‘Kaitiakitanga (guardianship) is such an important concept, and to see representatives from DoC, Massey University, the Palmerston North City Council and other organisations come together to support this is incredible. ’
Around 60 people gathered in the Victoria Esplanade last Friday for the dawn blessing of Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery led by kauma¯ tua from key project partners Rangita¯ ne o Manawatu¯ .
Kauma¯ tua Manu Kawana said the blessing was especially significant given the kaupapa (purpose) of the facility, and the timing during Conservation Week.
“Kaitiakitanga (guardianship) is such an important concept, and to see representatives from DoC, Massey University, the Palmerston North City Council and other organisations come together to support this is incredible,” he said.
Wildbase Recovery Community Trust chairman Roger Kennedy said the centre is now moving into the next phase of its life.
“The PowerCo Education Centre has a few final additions which will be included but otherwise, as far as the construction goes — we’re basically finished.
“The Massey University Wildbase team will now begin the commissioning of the centre, which will include a comprehensive pest removal operation and quarantine period.”
He said volunteer visitor hosts were in training and paid staff for the centre have been appointed and will be starting their new roles over the next few weeks.
“From this point, the centre will be handed over to its new team — who will be introducing schools and community groups to the education programme over time.”
The Wildbase Recovery centre will be owned by the council and co-managed with Massey University’s Veterinary School, working alongside Rangita¯ ne o Manawatu¯ , the Department of Conservation and community supporters.
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