Date: 24 August 2016
Launched earlier this year, the Toyota Kiwi Guardians network shows no signs of slowing with more than 1300 children having participated in the programme so far.
"We are excited to be working with DOC on a project that encourages Kiwi kids to conserve our natural environment and have fun doing it," said Toyota New Zealand CEO Alistair Davis.
Toyota Kiwi Guardians highlights family-friendly activities that support kids to engage their senses, take risks and, earn themselves a medal in the outdoors. It's about getting outside into nature, reducing time indoors and in front of screens.
"Research shows that a lifelong connection to nature can be established in six to ten year olds if they actively engage with it," says DOC Education Manager, Anita Anderson.
The additions to the Kiwi Guardians network are spread across Marlborough, Christchurch, Otago and Southland in the South Island and South Taranaki and Manawatu/Whanganui in the North Island.
The programme now has 36 sites and activities across the country - including five 'take action' at home activities - and will have 55 in total by the end of 2016.
"Like DOC, Toyota is passionate about making it easy for families to have great experiences in our national parks and reserves, and believes they are worth protecting," said Mr Davis.
The goal of the conservation programme is to turn Kiwi kids into guardians of the land and sea and increase Kiwi kids' connection with nature throughout New Zealand.
Children can also earn Toyota Kiwi Guardian medals by working on a variety of activities available on the Kiwi Guardians website.