Finalists named in 2020 Conservation Awards

New Zealand dotterel at Te Henga Bethells Beach. Photo Auckland Council

Two local groups feature in this year’s Mayoral Conservation Awards.

Despite this year being a difficult one for those on the frontline due to the impact of Covid-19, more than 40 entries were received in three categories for the awards.

The awards celebrate the work of conservationists “dedicated to safeguarding the region’s natural environment”.

“I knew there was a lot of fantastic work being done in our communities, but I didn’t realise it was as widespread and significant as these finalists suggest,” says Councillor Richard Hills, Chair Environment and Climate Change Committee and a judge of the awards.

“Knowing now how much is being done to protect and restore our environment makes me feel the job isn’t as big as I thought it was and each of us are not doing it alone. Congratulations to all the nominees. Our birds and waterways thank you.

“We are immensely grateful for the work the community groups do. As the future of the natural world is brought into even sharper focus it is important the recipients of our awards continue their vital work.”

Lotu Fuli, Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board Chair and a judge commented it was very pleasing to see some great initiatives and diversity of ideas and groups getting involved.

“I was particularly impressed with the youth really getting engaged and exploring sustainable practices, including activities that reflect and embrace Te Ao Maori.”

The annual award ceremony is on Saturday November 28 at the Hyundai Marine Sports Centre in Ōrākei. It’s the first day of a two-day Auckland Conservation weekend that continues Sunday November 29 at the University of Auckland’s School of Environment Science Centre.

The shortlist of finalists for 2020 is:

Collaboration:

Waiheke Collective
Te Ara Awataha and Jessie Tonar Scout Reserve regeneration
Pakuranga Pest Free
Awhitu Landcare Community Conservation
Restoring Takuranga-Hauraki
Aotearoa Lakes

Schools & Youth:

Para Patrol
Mt Albert Grammar School
Howick College Trapping Programme
War of the Mites

Triumph Against Adversity:

Te Henga/Bethells Dotterel Minders
Totara Heights Bush Guardians
Ecofest North 2020
Friends of Lot 29