Funding to help look after our environment
FOUR education centres in the Whitsunday region have received a funding boost to help their students make positive environmental changes in their community and for the Great Barrier Reef.
St Catherine's School in Proserpine, the Eimeo Road State School, Swayneville State School and Cannonvale’s 121 Childcare Centre, each received a $500 Ripples of Change grant from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA).
GBRMPA Reef Guardian schools acting program manager Carolyn Luder said the Ripples of Change grants helped Reef Guardian Schools kick-start or expand pro- jects that addressed threats to the reef.
She said 121 Childcare Centre and Eimeo Road State School would use the funding to plant trees in their school grounds, while Swayneville State School were installing drip irrigation to reduce water use for maintaining gardens. Meanwhile, St Catherine’s School will be revegetating wetlands and creating a bush tucker garden and rainforest area.
St Catherine’s head of science Tanya Pernase said students were motivated by the Reef Guardian projects and were keen to increase environmental awareness within the school and community.
“Last year we launched the Turtle Club, a young science ambassador group, where students [gave] up their lunch break once a week to learn about biology, physics, chemistry and the environment” she said.
“The Ripples of Change grant will help the Turtle Club create sustainable gardens, fertilised through com- posting and build a wetland at the Manresa Campus to educate students about this type of ecosystem.”
Each year 20 Reef Guardian Schools receive a Ripples of Change grant to support existing sustainability projects or implement new Reef Guardian projects within the school or community.
More than 300 schools and over 123,000 students take part in GBRMPA’s Reef Guardian Schools program across Queensland.
A full list of Ripples of Change grant winners and project summaries is available at www.gbrmpa.gov.au.
REEF GUARDIANS: Kate Finch (GBRMPA), Caleb Robinson (student) and Tanya Pernase (teacher) at St Catherine’s College, were excited to be presented with a $500 Ripples of Change grant to help continue to implement Reef Guardian activities. They will be focusing on creating sustainable gardens and a wetland within the school.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Ellie Blakeley and Padraig Harris from 121 Childcare Cannonvale were excited to receive one of 20 Ripples of Change grants of $500. They plan to use the money to go towards building a green classroom area for their kindy kids to use.