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March 24, 2020

QWaLC Member Groups Insurance Coverage update

Thanks to funding from the Queensland Government and the ongoing support of AON we have renewed insurance coverage for all QWaLC member groups until 31st March 2021.

All member groups who have completed this years membership and insurance survey will receive, via email, the new certificates of currency. If you don’t receive your new certificates by the 1st April you will need to contact Darryl.

In these different and challenging times we all need to follow the most recent information from trusted sources about COVID-19.

QWaLC will soon have a general information page with resources about the virus. In the meantime we provide some links to trusted sources of information.

https://www.health.qld.gov.au/news-events/news/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-sars-queensland-australia-how-to-understand-protect-prevent-spread-symptoms-treatment

https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/what-you-need-to-know-about-coronavirus-covid-19#protect-yourself-and-others

https://www.nfplaw.org.au/covid-19-faqs

Download a free epidemic/pandemic policy template

https://communitydirectors.com.au/policies/epidemic-pandemic-policy

You may need to cancel or postpone events, meetings or gatherings. If you have any questions or unsure as to what you should do about your group, volunteers and activities please give Darryl a call or send an email.

March 20, 2020

A letter from the Chair of QWaLC

Dear QWaLC Members

I want to touch base with you on behalf of the Board and staff of QWaLC to let you know that we are thinking of you, your loved ones and your communities at this difficult time.

Following hot on the heels of the drought (still ongoing in a lot of areas), the fires, the floods, and the plagues of moths and locusts that some areas have experienced, COVID-19 is the last thing we needed but it is here and we have to deal with it and with the ongoing effects for the foreseeable future.

Like myself, many of our membership are ‘senior’ land carers and it is vital that you take the time to assess your risks and put whatever practices in place you can to minimise these risks – practices such as effective handwashing, social distancing and other recommended and mandated actions such as avoiding gathering in groups.  See the Queensland State Government websitehttps://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19 and QWaLC website https://qwalc.org.au/coronavirus-covid-19/ for a fuller explanation of actions that you can take to protect yourself, your family and friends and your community as much as possible.

When this passes we will need all hands on deck, particularly the experience of our ‘senior’ members as well as the energy and drive of the young and young at heart, to ensure that our movement continues and that the effects of the fires, floods and droughts continue to be addressed on-ground.  This means that we each need to take care of ourselves – put the necessary processes in place to lesson risk, continue to listen to the authorities as things change, cancel gatherings until advised that it is safe to reschedule them and look to non-contact ways (telephone, email, Facebook, zoom) to continue to support each other and those in your communities if you are able.  Please stay safe and well but if you do become unwell, take the necessary action as advised by the authorities.

If you are presently the recipient of a Grant for activities that require groups of people to participate, please contact your grant provider to arrange an extension period. There appears to be no formal policy announced on this at the moment but, through my network I have examples of this happening.

We look forward to continuing to support you and your group however we are able as we weather this storm together.  Part of our upcoming work will be to distribute the Certificates of Insurance to groups that have completed the Annual Membership and Insurance Survey.  Our plan is to have these emailed before the end of March so watch out for them.

In the meantime, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our Executive Officer Darryl if you have questions or concerns.

Yours faithfully

Geoff Elliot, QWaLC Chair

March 16, 2020

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

The World Health Organization has announced that Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a pandemic. All levels of government within Australia are taking steps to minimise the spread of this virus through the community.

As community groups you will need to take additional care when considering, organising or undertaking your normal activities. Especially considering the social distancing advice.

  • Pay close attention to good hand hygiene. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, especially before eating, touching your face and after using the toilet.
  • Practice cough/sneezing etiquette by coughing into your elbow as opposed to hands and sneezing with a tissue. Dispose of the tissue into a bin and then wash your hands afterwards.
  • Avoiding close contact with others, such as touching, shaking hands, hugging and kissing.
  • Regularly wipe down surfaces.
  • Face masks are not recommended for use by members of the public in Queensland.
  • If you feel unwell and develop a fever or shortness of breath, a cough or respiratory illness do not go to work, meetings or events and contact your doctor.

There are plenty of resources online to refer to and keep up to date with the latest information relating to government decisions and guidance.

It is a good time to stop and consider what you may need to postpone or change based on the expected length of this event.

Some QWaLC member groups have already decided to postpone or cancel planned events, forums or workshops.

https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19

https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert

February 18, 2020

Costa Georgiadis and Junior Landcare ask Aussie kids Whats in Your Backyard?

QWaLC, Landcare Australia and Costa are joining forces with Junior Landcare, the popular TV star and Landcare champion has launched the ‘What’s in your Backyard?’ campaign to encourage the next generation to get outside and document what’s in their local environment.

Costa wants kids across Australia to grab a camera, and snap photos of the flora and fauna in their backyard.

With the help from their parents, carers and teachers, kids can submit photos to Junior Landcare to be in with a chance to win one of ten $250 cameras. The major school prize will be a visit from Costa!

When submitting your photo, select from one of the four categories biodiversity,food productionIndigenous perspectives and waste management and tell us why it is important to you.

Costa says “the entire environment is your backyard…”

Your backyard might be a garden. If you live in an apartment, your garden could be plants on your balcony. You may live near a park or bushland area, or a river or wetland. You may live on the coast close to the sea, or on a farm. 

‘What’s in Your Backyard?’ is a key activity in Junior Landcare’s new Learning Centre. With 30-minute learning activities developed by education professionals, the Junior Landcare Learning Centre has been created to help children be aware, empowered and active in caring for their local environment. The Learning Centre will help children understand biodiversity, where their food comes from, Indigenous perspectives and recycling and waste management. 

The ‘What’s in your Backyard?’ campaign closes April 20! Get snapping and send us your photos today!

Get involved here: https://juniorlandcare.org.au/campaigns/whatsinyourbackyard/

February 8, 2020

QWaLC 2020 Membership and Insurance Survey

Keep and eye on your inbox.

We are now distributing the elink for the QWaLC 2020 Membership and Insurance Survey.

I look forward to reading your responses.

Your information will contribute to telling the story about the impressive and practical contribution community environmental groups and volunteers make to our landscapes and the life of Queenslanders.

2020 National Landcare Conference

Call for abstracts

2020 National Landcare Conference Call for Abstracts

On behalf of the Landcare community, Landcare Australia and QWaLC are pleased to call for the submission of abstracts and posters for the 2020 National Landcare Conference. The bi-annual event will be held from Wednesday 11 to Friday 13 November 2020, at the International Convention Centre in Sydney. We are seeking presentations for the concurrent sessions that demonstrate the Landcare ethos for the following streams:

Sustainable Agriculture
Innovation and technology, soil health, adaptation to climate change, integrating productivity and conservation.
Farmers manage over half of the Australian landscape, and innovation in primary production and conservation of natural capital are critical to ensure a better future. This stream will focus on how farming and agriculture is adapting to an ever-increasing range of challenges, including climate change. Also, how Landcare is developing and implementing innovative farming practices to sustainably manage our productive natural assets.

Environment & Climate Change
How to encourage individuals to take positive action to mitigate climate change with Landcare?
With impacts of climate change increasing through extreme drought, fire and flood events, Australia’s landscapes and biodiversity are under immense pressure. Communities and individuals need to have confidence in effective actions that will make a difference individually and collectively, and help restore, protect and manage our natural assets and our own wellbeing. This stream will demonstrate how various Indigenous, Bushcare, Coastcare and other Landcare community groups, as well as the organisations they work with, are contributing to successfully meet these challenges, and provide ideas for more people to take positive action with Landcare.

Community Partnerships in Action
Building community capacity and resilience, communication and storytelling, volunteering, partnerships, building and sharing knowledge.
Community participation is at the heart of Landcare. This stream will demonstrate the achievements of individual Landcare community groups and projects, and the value of actively investing in communities and successful partnerships. The stream will also explore how Landcare can enhance engagement with rural communities, support the sharing of knowledge and help breakdown the disconnect that exists between the city and the bush.

Landcare Impact
Landscape, biodiversity, community resilience, mental and physical health of individuals, community wellbeing, agriculture productivity, economy. This stream will demonstrate the positive impact Landcare has in multiple areas including the environment, landscapes, agriculture, community, health, and the economy. Demonstrating the multiple impacts of Landcare is essential to help showcase to government, business, and philanthropic supporters the value of continued and increased investment into Landcare – as well as why ongoing investment is required now more than ever.

All abstracts are to be submitted electronically in accordance with the guidelines below and should be submitted by 11.59 pm (EST) on Wednesday 8 April, 2020. Authors may submit more than one paper, but the program is limited and your submission(s) may not be included in the conference program.

For further information and to submit an abstract please visit the Landcare Australia website:

https://landcareaustralia.org.au/call-for-abstracts

January 28, 2020

Qld Land Restoration fund applications open

Applications for the first intake of the Land Restoration Fund 2020 Investment Round close on 28 February 2020. A second intake will close 15 April 2020.

Information about upcoming information workshops and other support is on the Land Restoration Fund website. Workshops for those who wish to engage on koala habitat areas will be added soon.

January 14, 2020

Australian Government Volunteer Grants

Applications for the Australian Government Volunteer Grants are open until 6 April 2020

The objectives of Volunteer Grants are to:

1.  help community organisations to support the efforts of Australia’s volunteers

2.  help community organisations to support the inclusion of vulnerable people through volunteering

3.  encourage, support and increase participation in volunteering.

Please note that you will need to speak to your Local Member of Parliament to be nominated to apply.

For more information see the link below:

https://www.communitygrants.gov.au/grants/volunteer-grants-activity-%E2%80%93-2019-20-volunteer-grants

Qld Citizen Science Grants round 2

The second round of Queensland Citizen Science Grants are now open for applications.

The Queensland Citizen Science Grants provides funding of up to $30,000 to applicants over a period of up to three years. Applications are sought for projects that actively engage citizen scientists and address one or more of the strategy goals:

•         raise awareness: work together to ensure the Queensland community has an understanding of citizen science and the projects which are relevant to Queensland

•         make it easy for our community to find and participate in projects and for scientists to recruit and train citizen scientists. 

•         grow the community of citizen scientists and scientists working together to make scientific discoveries.

Visit the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist website or Advance Queensland website for more details. 

Applications close 1:00 pm Monday 9 March 2020.

January 13, 2020

Qld Govt Wildlife Carer Grants

Of the available $250,000, $120,000 will be divided up evenly between the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, RSPCA Wildlife Hospital and Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital to help cover the costs of caring for animals being brought in for treatment. 

The remaining funding, $130,000, will be provided to individual carers and wildlife care groups.

Eligible individual carers who do this selfless work on behalf of all Queenslanders can apply for a grant of up to $2,000 and eligible care groups can apply for a grant of up to $5,000.

The round will open 29 January 2020 with grants provided in an ongoing basis until all funding is allocated, so interested applicants should apply early when the round opens.

Applications for the Wildlife Carers Assistance Grants will open for funding at 9:00am on 29 January 2020.

  • Grants up to $2,000 (ex GST) are available to individual wildlife carers.
  • Grants up to $5,000 (ex GST) are available to wildlife care organisations. 

Funding will be provided for items which directly assist existing Queensland wildlife carers and care groups in the rescue and rehabilitation services they provide to sick or injured wildlife.

Applications will be accepted from individuals and organisations who:

  • have held a current Queensland permit as a wildlife rehabilitator or wildlife care group for at least 12 months
  • are undertaking rehabilitation activities from their registered location
  • have no convictions under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 or the Animal Care and Protection Act 2001 during the past ten years
  • have not had an authority cancelled or accumulated ten or more demerit points during the past three years
  • have submitted annual returns and maintained a register for all protected animals rescued or cared for in accordance with the requirements of their rehabilitation permits
  • have consent from the relevant property owner to undertake wildlife care activities.

In order to ensure a smooth application process, please have the following on hand when applying:

  • a copy of a current Queensland permit as a wildlife rehabilitator or wildlife care group. The permit must be in the name of the individual or the organisation applying for the grant
  • confirmation from the relevant property owner to undertake the wildlife care activities
  • a budget which details your project expenditure
  • a quote and design dimensions for any proposed enclosures to be constructed.

Grant program guidelines and the application form will be published on the Department of Environment and Science’s website on 29 January 2020 at https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/pollution/funding/community-sustainability

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