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Students get creative to help the Hunter River
Students from Metford, Ashtonfield, St Joseph’s and Bolwarra Primary Schools’swill be recognised at awards presentations this week for using their creative skills to raise awareness of ways residents can help keep the Hunter River clean.
Hunter-Central Rivers Waterwatch Coordinator Ingrid Berthold will present prizes to the students who created the four top brochures as part of the Protect our Creek program.
The program saw senior students learn the top nine tips for keeping local waterways clean and healthy and then asked the students to create a brochure to help raise awareness of the tips.
The students’ brochures include tips about picking up after your pet, washing your car on the grass, not fertilising gardens when rain is predicted, and doing the right thing with household waste, litter and cigarette butts.
Hunter-Central Rivers Waterwatch Coordinator Ingrid Berthold said the students aimed to help their local community understand that the little things they do every day affect the health of local waterways, and health of the Hunter River.
'While all of the students’ creations were impressive, we had to select only one winner per school. We were lucky enough to award a Highly Commended at each school too for the first time this year,' said Ms Berthold.
The competition was an initiative of Hunter-Central Rivers Waterwatch, and was made possible through the generous sponsorship from Hunter Water Corporation and support by Maitland City Council.
The winning entries will be rewarded with a prize pack of books and games at a school assembly. The winning brochure in each school will also be reproduced and copies given for each student in the school to take home.
Awards will be presented by representatives from Maitland City Council – Councillor Philip Penfold and Environmental Health Officer Fiona Rowan - and Hunter Water Corporation’s Nick Kaiser and Ashleigh Killingly.
The five participating schools from the Maitland area were Ashtonfield Public School, Bolwarra Public School, Gillieston Public School, Metford Public School and St Joseph’s Primary School.
The Hunter River drains the largest coastal catchment in New South Wales, covering some 22,000 square kilometres. It supports a great diversity of land uses, industries and urban settlements, from its beginnings in the Barringtons, to its end where the Hunter Estuary joins the ocean between Nobbys and Stockton Beaches. The health of the river system is dependent on the carefully balanced management of ecosystems across the catchment.
‘The competition has also been run with schools in the Flaggy Creek, Throsby/Styx Creek and Winding Creek catchments, and is a really fun and creative way for the students to get involved in raising community awareness about stormwater pollution and improving the health of our catchments,’ said Ms Berthold.
For more information about the brochure competition and looking after our waterways, please call Hunter-Central Rivers Waterwatch on 02 4930 1030 or go to www.hcr.cma.nsw.gov.au.