The Friends of Mt Majura have taken out ACT Landcare’s Community Group of the Year award.
The Mt Majura group was honoured for its significant contribution to the rehabilitation and protection of critically-endangered environments.
For the past 18 years, its volunteers have improved several degraded areas in the Mt Majura Nature Reserve including sheep camps, a former horse paddock and dams.
The core of its work has concentrated on large-scale tree and shrub planting, woody and herbaceous weed control, erosion control, direct seeding and soil improvement measures. Volunteers have worked on a number of projects with the ACT Parks and Conservation Service and local Landcare network Molonglo Conservation Group.
In 2021, members of the Mt Majura group volunteered 5500 hours of their time for the local environment, despite not being able to work during the COVID lockdown.
Work at the group’s current project, The Fair site in North Watson, began more than 10 years ago. Hundreds of trees have since been planted on site.
A Friends of Mt Majura spokesperson said The Fair work had been a real community effort with scouts, rugby clubs, schools and university students all working together with the Friends.
“While there is always more work to be done, this part of the nature park has been transformed by these efforts,” the spokesperson said.
“Park users can now enjoy meadows of wildflowers, bird song and wildlife sightings.”
Delayed by the COVID lockdown, chief executive officer of Landcare ACT, Karissa Preuss announced the 2021 awards last month at Gold Creek Station, Hall.
Ms Preuss described the contributions by all groups nominated for awards as “truly remarkable”.
“In the ACT, there are many thousands of individuals and over 70 groups who are dedicated to caring for the natural assets of our bush capital,” she said, adding the awards recognised and celebrated the work of dedicated Landcare volunteers.
“We received 37 nominations in 11 categories and it wasn’t an easy task for judges to decide on the winners.
“The winners of many of the 2021 ACT Landcare awards will go forward as nominees for the 2022 National Landcare Awards to be held on August 24 in Sydney.”
Winners of the 2021 awards were:
- ACM Landcare Community Group Award: Friends of Mt Majura
- Australian Government Individual Landcarer Award: Deb Kellock
- Australian Government Landcare Farming Award: Mt Majura Vineyard
- Australian Government Partnerships for Landcare Award: The ACT Healthy Waterways partnership between the Southern ACT Catchment Group, Ginninderra Catchment Group, Molonglo Catchment Group and ACT Government
- KPMG Indigenous Land Management Award: Karen Denny
- Steadfast Young Landcare Leadership Award: Fred McGrath Weber
- Woolworths Junior Landcare Team Award: North Ainslie Primary School and P&C
- ACT Government Citizen Science Award: Dr Rosemary Purdie
- ACT Government Quiet Achiever Award: Gudgenby Bush Generators Group
- Landcare ACT Photography Awards – Amateur: Jim Lehane
- Landcare ACT Photography Awards – Professional: Ian Houghton.