|Sydney Community Bushcare Program|
This major natural area restoration program has grown from small local neighbourhood efforts to become a unique movement involving more than 6000 volunteers across the Sydney area, supported by government agencies at the NSW and local level.
The technical focus of Bushcare typically involves weed removal in a manner that enables natural regeneration, ensuring systematic follow up until native resilience is reinstated and weed resilience minimised. The land managers support such programs with additional inputs to address causal factors such as weed dumping, drainage and fertility problems and inappropriate fires regimes.
Restoring sites at the urban bushland interface, especially in species-rich or endangered ecological communities, requires considerable skill and experience.
An important aspect of Sydney Bushcare is the training provided to volunteers. Modules from Land Management and Conservation accredited courses have been especially tailored for Sydney bush regeneration volunteers.
Environmental outcomes: Improved condition and extent of nartive vegetation. Increased capacity of community and land managers to engage in natural resource management.
The SMCMA supports Bushcare in the Sydney region and beyond. A key role is administrative management of the Volunteer Coordinators Network (VCN) which meets quarterly in Sydney for professional networking and sharing of ideas.
Every two years the SMCMA publishes a survey of volunteer hours worked in the catchment on on-ground projects and has an ongoing role assisting new volunteers to join local bushcare groups.
The SMCMA facilitates and assists with events and activities for volunteers including hosting an annual Community Forum which provides an opportunity for Bushcarers across Sydney to get together and share experiences.
Bushcare.org.au is a helpful resource for anyone interested in Bushcare. It helps to connect individuals, local groups and organisations involved in Bushcare, and shares the latest news, upcoming events and useful resources.