Kids Restore NZ, part of the Air New Zealand Environment Trust, has formed a significant partnership with the Fiordland Conservation Trust.
'Kids Restore the Kepler' is an extraordinary conservation project with a difference. As well as having conservation goals seeking to restore birdsong in the Kepler Mountains, the project also has a strong education focus.
The project aims to inspire Fiordland's young people, from preschool through to college, develop values, knowledge and skills so that they can be confident, connected and actively involved in caring for their environment now and in the future.
The Kepler Project is located on the Kepler Peninsula, an area of 12,000 ha bordered by Lake Te Anau to the north, Lake Manapouri to the south and the Waiau River to the east.
These natural boundaries substantially reduce the risk of pests re-invading the area, making the project ideally suited and cost effective as a restoration site, and one of the largest of its kind in the country.
With the commitment of the three local schools (Fiordland College, Te Anau Primary and Mararoa School) and two early childhood centres (Fiordland Kindergarten and Southern Stars ELC), the kids are involved in many aspects of the project, such as:
- building connections with their environment,
- establishing knowledge and skills,
- carrying out restoration work including activities such as marketing,
- celebrating milestones, reflecting and making changes.
This is an opportunity for the young people of Fiordland to make a difference on a local, national and even global scale.