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Victorian National Parks Association

Victorian Nature Stewards Program

Victorian Nature Stewards Program

Nature Stewards is an introductory environmental education program that connects curious people with their local and wider habitats as well as local environm...

GOAL

$60,000

RAISED

$23,000

australia > VIC > Metro and regional
01/01/2024 > 01/01/2027

FIELD OF INTEREST

  • Environment conservation and climate change
  • Community and economic development

TARGET POPULATION

  • General population

PROJECT SUMMARY

Nature Stewards is an introductory environmental education program that connects curious people with their local and wider habitats as well as local environment volunteer groups. Participants gain knowledge, learn practical skills and meet like-minded others in the local community.

The only course of its kind running in Australia, participants come together weekly over 10 weeks for classes and field excursions, guided by an experienced facilitator and topic specialists. Topics range from the benefits of nature, caring for Country, ecosystems, rocks, soil, fungi, plants and animals, climate change, and ways to get active for nature. Over 500 people have completed the program since 2019, and their feedback is overwhelmingly positive.

The program has a curriculum which was written to be dynamic, ready for local tailoring and varied delivery styles and as such, is easily adapted to new local areas and modes of delivery in Victoria. The quality of the 335-page curriculum resource document was recognised with the Outstanding Educational Materials award from the US-based Alliance of Natural Resource Outreach and Service Programs in 2020.


The target audience for this program includes all interested community members over 18 years. Class participants regularly span six decades, diverse occupations and multiple
cultural backgrounds, supporting intergenerational and intercultural learning and networking. Melbourne metro and regional programs have led directly to positive actions for nature at home, via environmental volunteering, in knowledge sharing within personal and professional networks, and new careers.

PROJECT OUTCOMES

Increased understanding of the following:
- Rocks, soil, fungi, plans and animals
- Climate change and seasons
- Ways to care for Country and manage private property
- How to be a citizen scientist, conservation volunteer, advocate for nature or a nature guide
- How and where you can volunteer in your area

Profile of Victorian National Parks Association

Victorian National Parks Association

VNPA is an independent, non-profit, membership-based group that protects Victoria’s unique natural environment and biodiversity through the establishment and effective management of national parks, conservation reserves and other measures.

We achieve our vision by facilitating strategic campaigns and education programs, developing policies, through hands-on conservation work, and by running bushwalking and outdoor activity programs which promote the care and enjoyment of Victoria’s natural heritage.

BUDGET BREAKDOWN

TOTAL BUDGET: $80,000
FUNDING
Funding sourceAmount
ACF Sub Fund - Mellidora Fund (Confirmed)$2,000
Funding Gap (Unconfirmed)$60,000
EXPENSES
Expense itemAmount
Project Cost Over 3 Years$80,000

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