Almost $35k funding for schools’ environmental projects

Nearly three dozen Northland schools have shared in almost $35,000 from several sources to help fund a variety of worthy environmental projects across the region.

Pictured among native plants destined to form part of a Bay of Islands College project to create a native bush sanctuary are teacher Richard Higgins and Enviroschools Northland facilitator Jacque Knight.

The Kawakawa-based college has received just over $1900 from the Northland Regional Council’s (NRC) 2020 Environmental Leaders’ Fund (ELF).

Justin Blaikie, the NRC’s Deputy Chair, says the college will buy materials for the school’s tech students to earn credits as they build a nursery to grow native plants, which their fellow students will then plant near a stream and marginal land around the school.

“Council provides $20,000 annually for the ELF, with 2020’s money allocated to 21 schools for native planting and riparian restoration projects, fencing, shade house and nursery construction, and SHMAK kits for water quality monitoring.”

Councillor Blaikie says on top of the ELF, another $4255 worth of trapping hardware from the NRC’s biosecurity fund was granted to six schools carrying out pest control projects.

“Finally, another seven schools were allocated $10,372 from the Toimata Foundation (a charitable trust focused on creative sustainability) to supplement worthy projects that would otherwise have missed out on receiving funds this year.”

Councillor Blaikie says since its inception several years ago, a wide range of projects have received funding via the annual ELF fund.

“By teaching our tamariki and their whanau about sustainability from an early age, we’re investing in our future kaitiaki, and developing sustainable practices that will live long into the future.”

“Applications can be made for a maximum of up to $2000 funding and projects relating to council’s core business of biodiversity, biosecurity and water quality typically have a greater chance of success.”

Councillor Blaikie says while this year’s ELF money has now been allocated, the regional council has a range of other community funding available.

Find out more: www.nrc.govt.nz/elf

Pictured among native plants destined to form part of a Bay of Islands College project to create a native bush sanctuary are teacher Richard Higgins and Enviroschools Northland facilitator Jacque Knight.

Pictured among native plants destined to form part of a Bay of Islands College project to create a native bush sanctuary are teacher Richard Higgins and Enviroschools Northland facilitator Jacque Knight.