Land­care re­view to sup­port vol­un­teers

Mansfield Courier - - NEWS -

THE Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment has an­nounced a re­view of its pro­gram of sup­port for Land­care to make sure it is up to sup­port­ing the needs of vol­un­teers and com­mu­ni­ties.

Min­is­ter for En­vi­ron­ment, Cli­mate Change and Wa­ter Lisa Neville an­nounced the re­view as part of the gov­ern­ment’s com­mit­ment to en­sur­ing we pro­vide ef­fec­tive sup­port to the Land­care com­mu­nity across Vic­to­ria through the Vic­to­rian Land­care Pro­gram.

“This re­view recog­nises the cru­cial role that vol­un­teers play in Land­care groups,” she said.

“We need to make sure they are sup­ported as ef­fec­tively as pos­si­ble so they can con­tinue their valu­able en­vi­ron­men­tal work.

“We are com­mit­ted to strength­en­ing and build­ing Land­care to en­sure it con­tin­ues to de­liver real, on the ground re­sults and meets Vic­to­ria’s cur­rent and fu­ture en­vi­ron­men­tal needs.”

The re­view process be­gins with gath­er­ing a wide-range of com­mu­nity views in or­der to strengthen the role and scope of lo­cal fa­cil­i­ta­tors and de­velop the best pos­si­ble long-term ar­range­ments for the Vic­to­rian Land­care Pro­gram and the Vic­to­rian Land­care Fa­cil­i­ta­tor Pro­gram.

A stake­holder ref­er­ence group has been es­tab­lished as part of the re­view’s con­sul­ta­tion process and in­cludes rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Vic­to­rian Land­care Coun­cil, Farm Tree and Land­care As­so­ci­a­tion, Catch­ment Man­age­ment Author­i­ties and the Depart­ment of En­vi­ron­ment, Land, Wa­ter and Plan­ning (DELWP).

John Gil­son, pres­i­dent of the De­latite Land­care Group, wel­comed the re­view.

“Land­care fa­cil­i­ta­tors play a vi­tal role in co­or­di­nat­ing the work of Land­care groups and other en­vi­ron­men­tal or­gan­i­sa­tions,” he said.

“Fa­cil­i­ta­tors are able to act as a link be­tween lo­cal and state gov­ern­ments - the role of the Land- care fa­cil­i­ta­tors is vi­tal and needs on­go­ing gov­ern­ment sup­port.”

The gov­ern­ment re­cently high­lighted its on­go­ing sup­port for Land­care through the launch of the $2 mil­lion 2015-16 Vic­to­rian Land­care Grants in ad­di­tion to the fund­ing of Vic­to­ria’s 68 Land­care fa­cil­i­ta­tor po­si­tions for a fur­ther four years.

Along­side a num­ber of sig­nif­i­cant re­forms the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment is re­view­ing the Land­care Pro­gram and Lo­cal Fa­cil­i­ta­tor Ini­tia­tive to en­sure the best pos­si­ble sup­port for land car­ers and com­mu­nity groups, which in turn, sup­ports lo­cal en­vi­ron­men­tal projects.

The con­tri­bu­tion Land­care makes to­wards pro­tect­ing and im­prov­ing Vic­to­ria’s en­vi­ron­ment, along with the im­proved pro­duc­tiv­ity of farms, and the many so­cial ben­e­fits is well recog­nised in Aus­tralia and around the world.

The online sur­vey and fur­ther in­for­ma­tion can be found at www. land­care­vic.net.au.

TREESCAPE: Mer­ton Land­care Group re­cently planted out trees along the Great Vic­to­rian Rail Trail at Mer­ton – a part of their com­mit­ment to Land­care and the en­vi­ron­ment.

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