Kaarakin opens education centre

Kaarakin opens education centre

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Bill Dewhurst with one of the dingoes at the newly opened education facility in Kaarakin black cockatoo conservation centre. Photograph — Matt Devlin.
Bill Dewhurst with one of the dingoes at the newly opened education facility in Kaarakin black cockatoo conservation centre. Photograph — Matt Devlin.

Kaarakin black cockatoo conservation centre opened its new education facility last week.

Board member Glenn Dewhurst said the facility will allow Kaarakin to better educate the public about native and endangered animals by providing a more accessible space for people from diverse backgrounds to congregate.

“We get a lot of different people volunteering with us including people who have disabilities, older people, younger people and indigenous people,” he said.

“We’re also getting a lot of families starting to volunteer together, particularly parents who are trying to reconnect with their children, which is working really well.

“Hopefully this space will give us more of an opportunity to bring people together.”
He said the facility included a teaching space, a kitchen, disabled toilets and easy access paths.

“When people actually walk into the room there will be black cockatoos in there and we’ll be able to have dingoes walk through,” he said.

“Before this we didn’t really have a good space to cater for a big group of people, especially people with disabilities and seniors who often found it hard to get through the property.

“The people who came here before had to put up with not having access to a disabled toilet so this is a lot better.”

He said the education centre will be available to hire out to groups and people looking to do studies.

“We’re reliant on sponsorships but they’ve been on the decline recently so we’re hoping hiring the room out will be able to produce a revenue stream, which will allow us to do regular maintenance on the property,” he said.

“We’d also like to get people in the housing industry who knock down bush to come up here and learn about the birds and maybe think about the different ways of doing it.

“We want to put them in touch with what the birds actually need.”
The facility took about six months to build and was funded with the help of a Lotterywest grant.