Restoration Day Celebrates Region’s Conservation Community
Birds, bugs and lizards was the theme of the Restoration Day 2021, an event that brings together dedicated volunteers, experts, iwi and community to celebrate their efforts to protect and restore our region’s natural environment.
This year, this annual celebration was led by Greater Wellington in partnership with Department of Conservation, mana whenua, local councils, Zealandia and Wellington Zoo.
Greater Wellington senior biodiversity advisor and event organiser Jo Fagan says although you may not see it, there is a crowd of dedicated people working to protect and enhance the natural world under your feet, in our forests, and in the sky.
“If our birds, bugs and lizards could speak - they would say thank you to those who pitch in countless hours to help their survival.”
“So for us, Restoration Day is all about thanking those who are doing the mahi on the ground - while connecting community groups with experts and other groups, to strengthen and support this hard-working community,” says Jo.
A few of the event's highlights included a keynote speech from Capital Kiwi’s Paul Stanley-Ward, mana whenua perspectives, ‘lightning round’ talks from environmental restoration experts, workshops and field trips.
Department of Conservation Kapiti operations manager, Angus Hulme-Moir says, “It is always a privilege to be a part of Restoration Day. Spending time with people who have a strong commitment to Te ora o Papatūānuku/healthy nature, is always a heartening experience.
"Without the thousands of hours contributed by the community conservation sector, Wellington would not have the incredible wildlife we have today," says Angus.
Greater Wellington parks, forest, biodiversity and recreation portfolio leader and councillor, Prue Lamason says the wonderful thing about Restoration Day is it builds momentum around conservation projects, discussions and future plans.
“Thanks to a diverse group of partners and volunteers working towards a common goal– together we’re generating a real buzz around conservation and sustainability, which we hope will inspire others to join us.”
“If you’re interested in volunteering or taking part in conservation projects in your area, Greater Wellington supports over 20 volunteer groups across the region,” says Cr Lamason.
For more information on restoration projects in our region, visit: www.gw.govt.nz/volunteer/ or contact your local Council to find out about groups in your area.