Look­ing af­ter our re­gion’s trea­sures

The Tribune (NZ) - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE -

Look­ing af­ter your­self, your fam­ily and your lo­cal trea­sures is what Con­ser­va­tion Week 2016 (Septem­ber 10-18) is all about.

The theme - Healthy Na­ture Healthy Peo­ple - en­cour­ages peo­ple to think about how they could look af­ter them­selves and their lo­cal nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment.

Stud­ies show that spend­ing time in the outdoors brings ben­e­fits to peo­ple’s health and well­be­ing. Just 30 min­utes of ex­po­sure to na­ture a week can re­duce the risk of de­pres­sion and heart dis­ease.

’’Dis­con­nect­ing from the hus­tle and bus­tle of ev­ery­day life is eas­ier than many peo­ple think,’’ says DOC’s Con­ser­va­tion Week spokesper­son Dawn Muir.

‘‘Un­wind­ing with the fam­ily in our nat­u­ral spa­ces is the per­fect pre­scrip­tion for a health­ier, hap­pier life.’’

Whether it is ex­plor­ing a re­serve, join­ing a lo­cal event or en­ter­ing a Con­ser­va­tion Week com­pe­ti­tion, there are plenty of op­por­tu­ni­ties to join the Healthy Na­ture Healthy Peo­ple team.

A num­ber of com­mu­nity groups and or­gan­i­sa­tions are of­fer­ing a great se­lec­tion of events to cel­e­brate Con­ser­va­tion Week across Horowhenua, Manawatu and Ran­gi­tikei. Planned ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude com­mu­nity plant­ing days, PNCC’s ‘preda­tor free’ day at Tu­tukiwi Re­serve, and field trips to some spe­cial places like Otaki Forks. The Oroua Whio Pro­tec­tors field trip on Sun­day Septem­ber 18 is a fam­i­lyfriendly event that will show­case the work be­ing done by the lo­cal com­mu­nity to pro­tect the en­dan­gered Whio or blue duck). Janet Wil­son, chair of the Ruahine Whio Pro­tec­tion Trust, will lead an easy tramp along the most ac­ces­si­ble preda­tor-trap­ping line in the Ruahine For­est Park. The trip will in­clude a snack stop at Alice Nash Memo­rial Her­itage Lodge be­fore head­ing down to the Oroua River. Text Janet on 0273418945 to reg­is­ter your in­ter­est in at­tend­ing.

If you can’t make it to any of the planned events, there are lots of other ideas on the DOC web­site. Check out http://www.doc.govt.nz/news/events/con­ser­va­tion-week/ to find out more about how you can help the team.

A com­mu­nity plant­ing day was held in Levin to mark a pre­vi­ous Con­ser­va­tion Week.

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