• Annemarie Taylor

$45,000 grant to Hawkesbury Community Nursery to help bushfire recovery

The Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife, the charity partner for Australia’s National Parks, has awarded a $44,900 Bushfire Recovery grant to Hawkesbury Community Nursery.

Hawkesbury Mayor Patrick Conolly with staff at Hawkesbury Community Nursery

In partnership with global non-profit, One Tree Planted and French beauty brand, L’OCCITANE, this is the first stage in FNPW’s mission to plant one million trees over the next five years to help replace trees that were lost in the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Annually, the Community Nursery produces around 20,000 to 30,000 native plants endemic to the Hawkesbury region and supplies these to numerous revegetation and restoration projects.

The grant will extend the nursery’s capacity to 45,000 trees, which will then be planted out to help the recovery of Wollemi National Park and the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, 80 per cent of which was devastated by the recent bushfire season.

Funding will also be allocated to provide levelling and drainage to the expanded area, nursery benches, water supply tanks, a plant trailer and other essentials required for long-term nursery growth.

Hawkesbury Mayor, Councillor Patrick Conolly, said the grant would benefit not only Hawkesbury Community Nursery, but the wider community as well.

“Our local area has experienced first-hand the effects of the bushfires and fortunately, we have a well-developed volunteer program that helps support the regeneration of our local flora and fauna. The grant will make a big difference to regenerating the native habitat for Australian wildlife. This grant will also see us widen our scope beyond the Hawkesbury region to offer even more support as our country regenerates.”

Trees grown in the community nursery include Forest Red Gum, Grey Gum, Black She-oak and Mountain Blue Gum to support threatened species including koalas, Yellow-bellied Gliders and Glossy Black Cockatoos.

Ian Darbyshire, Chief Executive Officer for the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife, said the Hawkesbury Community Nursery would “play a significant role in our mission to restore our national ecosystem”.

“Tree planting is essential for the regeneration of our future and plays a vital role in restoring natural habitats, native vegetation and wildlife rehabilitation efforts across Australia.”

The Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife has awarded grant funding to two other nurseries - Greening Australia in the ACT, and Yankalilla Community Nursery in SA. Trees will be planted in National Parks across Australia, as well as other public and private lands affected by bushfires.

Since 2015, the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife has also worked on its initiative ‘Plant a Tree for Me’ in response to the progressively degrading environment. A donation of just $10 will plant and maintain one tree in the Bushfire Recovery project. For further information and updates on Foundation For National Parks & Wildlife’s projects, visit www.fnpw.org.au

Hawkesbury Community Nursery is at 10 Mulgrave Road, Mulgrave, next door to the Hawkesbury Companion Animal Shelter. The Nursery is open is open to the public on Wednesdays from 9am to 1pm or by appointment and on the 1st Saturday of the month from 9am to midday (excluding December and January) under COVID-Safe guidelines. For details visit www.hawkesbury.nsw.gov.au/services/places-and-facilities/community-nursery