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Kids Fight To Save Kauri


Kids Fight To Save Kauri

Imagine kauri groves springing up on school grounds all over urbanised Auckland. If Simon Grant from Community Waitakere Charitable Trust has his way that is exactly what will happen.

Tuesday, 17 July was kick-off day for ‘Kids for Kauri’ at Henderson Primary School, with formal speeches, a performance by the whole school, and ceremonial planting of kauri seedlings.

Simon describes the Kids for Kauri programme as “a practical way for our youngest people to save our oldest tree.” The pilot programme, run by Community Waitakere Charitable Trust, is being trialled in five primary schools in west Auckland this year, with plans to expand in 2013 if additional support can be found. Simon would love to join forces with more local businesses, adding that “it’s great we already have backing from the Kauri Dieback Management Programme (a partnership between the Ministry of Primary Industries, Department of Conservation, regional councils and tangata whenua in kauri areas) and support from the company Treescape.”

“The majority of the kauri were milled or burnt by early settlers. We now treasure our remaining kauri, but the newly-identified kauri dieback disease is again killing our giants. Thousands of trees are estimated to have died from the disease so far. This risk of losing our kauri motivated Community Waitakere to take action” explains Simon.

Kids for Kauri educators will work with students to plant a kauri grove in each participating school, and teach students to protect their kauri with simple measures- such cleaning shoes before and after visiting kauri. Assistant Principal of Henderson Primary School, Russell French, was excited to have the programme launch at his school, and sees “involving kids as essential in the fight to stop the spread of kauri dieback disease.”Flanshaw Road and Edmonton Primary are among the next schools eagerly waiting for their up-coming kauri planting days.


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The Henderson Primary School student, Lemuel Ely, cares for one of the Kids for Kauri seedlings

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The Henderson Primary School student, Steve Suthanthangjai, cleans mud off a fellow student’s shoes to prevent contamination of the school’s kauri grove with Kauri Dieback Disease.

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Henderson Primary School students imagining they are giant kauri trees. To the left is Saheeba Shah and Kavindi Wijeratne on the right.

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Henderson Primary School student, Atera Tomokino, planting one of the kauri seedling in the schools new ‘Kauri Corner’ at the Kids for Kauri programme launch

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Henderson Primary School and guests assembled for the launch of the Kids for Kauri pilot programme

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Deputy Principal of Henderson Primary School, Russell French, leads students in a waiata at the launch of Kids for Kauri


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