Local community groups strike gold as RACV digs deep

Seven diverse environmental projects in local communities around the Goldfields region will benefit from close to $180,000 in funding, thanks to a new partnership between RACV and Landcare Australia.

Predicting outcomes that will benefit both the local environment and local communities, the projects will result in improved biodiversity, the creation of habitat for wildlife, improved water quality, education for local students, and the eradication of many hectares of invasive weeds.

One of the projects being undertaken by the Upper Mount Emu Creek Landcare Network involves 60 landholders and will see the creation of eight hectares of new habitat for native wildlife.  The visitor experience at Creswick Forest will also benefit from another of the projects, managed by Wattle Flat-Pootilla Landcare Group, which will see the installation of four BBQs, signed pathways, as well as weed removal and the planting of native trees.

“RACV has made a number of exciting improvements since we commenced operating the RACV Goldfields Resort last November, with many more improvements planned. We have received a terrific welcome from the community and are continuing to build strong partnerships throughout the region,” said RACV Goldfields Resort Manager Stephen Roberts.

“RACV is committed to supporting the Victorian community and we are especially excited to partner with Landcare Australia to support such a strong suite of projects in the Creswick and Goldfields areas to improve the health of the local environment.”

Landcare Australia CEO, Tessa Jakszewicz, is delighted to see such a substantial investment into local groups. “The impact that these projects will have on the health of local land and water assets is large-scale and long-term, and it’s fantastic to be able to support such a diverse range of Landcare groups through this partnership, which involves farmers, students, conservationists and local residents” she said.

The projects being undertaken through the RACV and Landcare Australia partnership will take place across the region, from Daylesford to Ullina and Invermay, and in between.  The RACV Goldfields resort employs 140 people and those staff members will have the opportunity to volunteer at the projects, gaining hands-on experience in natural resource management, and providing assistance to the local community groups involved.

For more information on the projects and the partnership, please visit www.landcareaustralia.org.au/our-partners

 

Project Descriptions

  • Ullina Landcare Group - Active for 20 years and predominantly made up of local primary producers, the Ullina Landcare Group is working to restore Birch Creek, and will be removing exotic weeds, collecting seeds, planting, erecting fencing and installing water tanks and pumps.  This long-term project will see an improvement in water quality, habitat for native fauna, and a reduction in erosion.
  • Upper Mount Emu Creek Landcare Network - Six landholders will be involved in this project which will see the creation of biodiversity corridors, with eight hectares of new habitat created, and a further 16 hectares enhanced.  Species in the area include the koala, brush tailed phascogale, growling grass frog and striped legless lizard.
  • Bald Hills-Creswick Landcare Group - This community group has been eradicating weeds and planting native trees in the area for over 25 years.  The group will undertake a project at Park Lake Botanical Reserve to help restore it to its former glory.  Local community groups will be involved in the work which will include clearing weeds and lining walking trails with native flora.
  • Wattle Flat-Pootilla Landcare Group - Visitors to Creswick Forest will benefit from this project, which involves restoration works to Slaty Creek Picnic Ground and the Great Dividing Trail walk.  Signed pathways, fencing and BBQs will be installed, weeds will be removed, and a number of native trees planted.
    Upper Loddon and Avoca Landcare Network - The Smeaton Farming for Sustainable Soils Group will undertake a project to measure the ability of management practices shown to improve soil microbiology and overall soil health.  Intensive tests will be undertaken and a soil master class conducted, with the aim of increasing the economic and environmental sustainability of production in the district.
  • Blampied-Kooroocheang Landcare Group - Farmers and landholders work together in this group which has been active since 1988.  Pest plant species will be actively controlled, including gorse, blackberry and boxthorn, and indigenous plants used to revegetate, including Yarra gum, tree violet and silver banksia.
  • Friends of Cornish Hill - Working on the restoration of Cornish Hill, this group will undertake three projects involving and educating local students, providing hands on experience with native animals and taking part in a ‘River Detectives’ program.

 

About Landcare Australia
Landcare Australia is a not-for-profit organisation, leading the promotion of and providing financial support to the Landcare national resource management programme in Australia; aligning the practice of environmental management with land productivity, and devolving governance and management to local communities.

Landcare Australia works collaboratively with federal, state and local governments, corporate partners and sponsors, and individuals, to deliver hundreds of projects annually through the volunteer efforts of local community groups, indigenous groups, and the more than 5,400 Landcare and Coastcare groups across Australia. www.landcareaustralia.org.au

 

About RACV
RACV has more than 2.1 million members.   It provides products and services to meet the changing needs of members and acts as a respected independent voice for members’ broader interests in the community. RACV’s community engagement programs provide financial, in-kind and volunteer assistance to a wide range of Victorian charitable and community organisations. www.racv.com.au

Written by Liselotte Geary, RACV Public Affairs, 9790 2717
September 20, 2016