Birds of a feather flock together

Building pride in the community for their local environmental assets

Birds of a feather flock together

Building pride in the community for their local environmental assets

Community Participation -

LP011-007

The issue

Leeton’s locals know Fivebough Wetlands as a swamp and very few local people know its significance on the global stage as a RAMSAR site. Local Artist Jason Richardson was aware of the issue and was interested in raising the profile of the Wetlands by producing an artwork for display plus an information session in conjunction with the Leeton Community Op Shop. Kathy Tenison (Murrumbidgee Landcare) was aware of the need for artwork in the display cases at Fivebough Wetlands. So, repurposing the artwork on completion of the information session seemed a good fit. Jason also used the Fivebough banner design to produce promotional stickers.

The solution

The aim of the project was to raise the profile of Fivebough Wetlands, helping Leeton find greater pride in the site. The Community Op Shop takes pride in being a place for everyone in Leeton. Jason thought combining the Op Shop and Fivebough Wetlands would reflect the metaphor ‘birds of a feather flock together’. He designed a banner for Fivebough which features local and migratory birds who call Fivebough home.  This banner featured in the Op Shop window along with photos from Murrumbidgee Field Naturalists and Murrumbidgee Landcare encouraging local people to visit Fivebough to gain confidence in identifying wetland birds.

The impact

In conjunction with the display, Jason and the Op Shop staff organised a morning tea. Two speakers joined twenty-five volunteers. Max O’Sullivan from Murrumbidgee Field Naturalists explained the importance of the Wetlands internationally, the distance birds have to travel to get to Leeton and the best time of year/day for viewing the birds. Kathy Tenison from Murrumbidgee Landcare spoke about the benefits of nature for both mental and physical health. She also provided a resource package for volunteers to assist in identifying wetland birds and to gain a better understanding of the research occurring in the area.

Learnings

Art and Environment projects are a good mix. Fivebough Wetland is at the Heart of Leeton and is supported by Create NSW’s Country Arts Support Program, a devolved funding program administered by Regional Arts NSW and Western Riverina Arts on behalf of the NSW Government.

Key facts

  • Using art to raise the profile of Fivebough Wetlands in the local Leeton community
  • Connecting Op Shop volunteers with their local wetland environment, identifying similarities as birds of a feather flock together

Project Partners