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Young Tasmanians help protect Black Gum Reserve.



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Julie Collins MP

Federal Member for Franklin MEDIA RELEASE

Wednesday 18 February, 2009

Young Tasmanians help protect Black Gum Reserve

The Federal Member for Franklin, Julie Collins MP, announced a new Australian Government Green Corps project today.

The project will help to protect the endangered Swamp Gum and Swift Parrot at the Black Gum Reserve in Huonville.

Ms Collins said participants in the project will be making an important contribution to increasing community awareness and appreciation for the natural environment.

“This project will give 10 young people the chance to help endangered species and improve the biodiversity of the area. This southern Tasmania project will also provide local residents and visitors with improved access to the area, and raise awareness in the community about environmental issues.”

Green Corps is a federally funded program which provides young people aged 17-20 with the opportunity to participate in projects that conserve, preserve and restore Australia’s environment and cultural heritage.

Green Corps also aims to help community groups with restoration and rehabilitation of the environment and heritage assets.

During the course of each 26-week project, participants work towards a minimum of a Certificate I qualification in horticulture, conservation and land management.

“Green Corps enables participants to work with people of their own age under the supervision of a qualified team leader and gives them training in recognised skills that are designed to lead to full-time work opportunities in related fields,” Ms Collins said.

Nationally, Green Corps participants have propagated and planted more than 15 million trees, put up more than 8500 kilometres of fencing, collected more than 11,000 kilograms of seeds, and built or maintained more than 6000 kilometres of walking tracks and boardwalks.

Ms Collins said that in line with its election commitment the Rudd Government had reviewed the current employment services including the Green Corps program.

“Following extensive consultation, the Australian Government has designed new, streamlined employment services that will provide more tailored services for job seekers,” she said.

“From 1 July next year, Green Corps activities will be a work experience option in the new employment services.

“Activities will retain their focus on natural environment and cultural heritage principles, with an added focus on water and climate change.

“Green Corps will also continue to provide the opportunity to integrate work experience with training, but will be expanded and now available to job seekers of all ages.”

More information on Green Corps can be obtained by visiting the Green Corps website at www.greencorps.gov.au.

Media contact: Lisa Mycko 0409 584 840