In 2013 we challenged Victorian schools to show their love for their local threatened wildlife. The result? Some very creative campaigns from some very committed students!
Buxton Primary School inspired many others to care for and help save the Leadbeater's Possum. They organised Lenny the Leadbeater’s Possum to appear at the at Steel Band Festival and displayed posters, poems and a video at the Marysville Information Centre. Next came a radio interview and an article in the local paper. They also wrote letters to politicians and organised a community awareness night with guest speakers from both sides of the issue surrounding protection of remaining possum habitat. And if that's not enough they also put on an art show and placed collection tins in local businesses. This raised $400 which will go towards infra-red monitoring cameras to study possums in the wild!
Chiltern Primary School got behind the Regent Honeyeater, a local critically endangered bird. Students did individual projects and engaged with field researchers responsible for releasing the birds to the wild.
Gembrook Primary School wanted to help their close neighbour, the Baw Baw Frog. They published an article in the local newspaper and created a Baw Baw frog lantern which they proudly marched in the Belgrave Lantern Festival!
At Macclesfield Primary School a very talented young author, Mieke Florisson, wrote and published her own book called “Lunar the Leadbeater’s Possum”. Her fellow students organised a book launch with signing by the author which raised $500 !
Don Valley Primary School also focussed on the Leadbeater’s Possum . Students made posters and sent a newsletter to the families of the school. They also organised a petition for people to sign to pledge to use recycled toilet paper, and then took this further by engaging with other schools in the Wollombi cluster area asking them to pass on the petition to their school community to encourage more people to convert to recycled toilet paper.
At the foot of Mount Hotham sits Harrietville Primary School. Further up in the mountains lives the critically endangered Mountain Pygmy-possum . The students made posters to hang around Harrietville and Bright and made a documentary about the Mountain Pygmy Possum and put it up on YouTube! You can watch their video here.They then shared the link in a school newsletter and on Facebook .
Penhurst Primary School is a tiny school of only 10 students. When they learned that the Eastern Barred Bandicoot (EBB) used to live in their local grasslands they were determined to help save this cute marsupial. They had an article publishedin the local paper , put up information posters around the school, and visited Hamilton Institute of Rural Learning to learn more about the threats to the EBB. They then took up the Common Cents Challenge to collect as many 5 cent coins as they could find to support our EBB conservation program.