Just arrived? Try a little conservation

Just arrived? Try a little conservation

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Conservation Volunteer Australia volunteer Ting Wu and Conservation offi cer Clare MacNish. Photograph — Richard Polden.

If you just landed down under, if you live in Canning and are curious to know more about Australia you should consider joining Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) to go on a learning hunt for Australia’s native wildlife and flora.

CVA received funding from the Department of Home Affairs to run a program aimed at helping newly arrived migrants to integrate into their local community.

The program encourages Australian migrants to engage with their wider community while helping to conserve the environment.

The City of Canning and SERCUL have been working with CVA to deliver the program every Tuesday morning.

Conservation officer Clare MacNish said many participants have joined the program simply because they are looking to make new friends but have since gained a new found interest in Australian wildlife and conservation.

“It is important for newcomers to learn about their local environment and the challenges we are facing in Australia,” she said.

“The program also offers an opportunity to learn new skills that will be valuable in the future when the participants are looking for work.

“I believe that the friendships that have grown as a result of this program will be
long lasting.”

Ting Wu joined the program after recently moving to Perth a month ago and has now become a regular while she is looking for permanent work.

“When I started, I was introduced to both Stirling and Cannington projects and it was an absolutely great experience for me to get some insights about environment conservation and to learn some basic knowledge about local flora and fauna,” she said.

“The volunteering work can vary but what I have done so far includes mainly planting and weeding.”

Ms Wu immigrated from China and said she understands how difficult it can be for new immigrants as they might encounter challenges such as unemployment, language barriers and a sense of isolation.

“I would suggest to them that they definitely try to find local organisations like CVA,” she said.

“It is a great opportunity to get to know more people, you’ll understand that you are not alone.

“You are getting involved in the community and provides a sense of achievement as well.”

As part of the program, people get to know more about the nature reserve and the reason behind the need for planting certain kinds of plants or the need to get rid of them.

To get involved in the project contact the Perth office on 9335 2777.

Anyone is welcome and it doesn’t matter if you can only speak some English.