At the start of Term 3 the Impact Facilitators started working alongside Oranga Tamariki, Devon Intermediate, Activity Centre and Manukorihi School. The recent launch of Restore Taranaki and Towards Predator Free Taranaki had the young people eager to get involved in conservation focused projects.
Devon Intermediate students began their project with a rubbish clean up around the school grounds. They had a field trip to the Community Resource Recovery Centre to learn about recycling and afterward decided to make an eco-brick structure. They took the rubbish that they had collected from the school grounds to make the eco-bricks - plastic bottles filled up with soft plastics to form a hard brick. With these they created a rubbish bin sculpture. The rubbish bin sculpture and installed bin is to be placed in an area identified by the students as a litter problem area, in the hope to reduce the amount of rubbish dropped.
Activity Centre were very busy this term with a focus on Back Beach. The students where shocked by the amount of rubbish that ends up in our oceans and wanted to help. They planned a beach clean up at Back Beach to pick up the litter. They went one step further in creating an educational sign for the carpark area to ''Keep NZ Clean". They also supported the Restore Taranaki project by writing to the New Plymouth District Council and bringing donated Paritutu specific native Harakeke that they planted.
The students from Manukorihi Intermediate showed a lot of interest in the recreational hunting in their area and how this can have a positive impact on their natural environment. Their project focused on predator trapping to support the Taranaki Regional Councils Towards Predator Free Taranaki goals. They upcycled some real estate advertising signs to make tracking tunnels around the school and then used this information to learn what types of predators were in the area and identified which areas were best to set traps. The group set up five traps around their school grounds as well as native planting to help grow their nature areas. The school have also collected 100 traps for the students to build and sell for their community, these proceeds go towards further environmental initiatives within the School.
Sustainable Taranaki Impact program partnered with Oranga Tamariki for the first time during Term 3. The partnership has been a great success with five young people taking part in the Impact Program. They learnt about the Towards Predator Free Taranaki project and explored the pest trapping work being done around Pukekura Park with Taranaki Regional Council staff. The group decided to help with predator trapping at the Katere Ki-Te-Moana Marae, so they made some tracking tunnels and identified that rats and mice were present in the area. They built the traps themselves and set them out in the orchard area. They also planted pear trees and a feijoa to contribute to the space.
A huge thanks to the Taranaki Regional Council for all of their support around Predator Trapping and meeting with the young people engaged in the program. Thank you also go out to New Plymouth District Council for support with native tree planting at the Back Beach Reserve, Katere Ki-Te Moana Marae for welcoming us into your space and by so supportive of the youth project.
We also really appreciate all the support from school staff members and local residents who support all of the young people in achieving their projects, we are always amazed at their creativity and dedication to taking positive environmental and sustainable action.