Small Environmental Projects Fund
Inspiring Environmental Awareness in the Community
Cowra Shire Council’s Natural Resources Management Advisory Committee manages a Small Environmental Projects Fund which is a program aimed at schools, care centres, community groups, clubs, progress associations and not-for-profit organisations to encourage environmental awareness within the local environment.
Proposals are encouraged from the community that support environmental health and practices that engage, inspire and educate the community in:
- sustainable practices
- wildlife habitat enhancement
- biodiversity & local ecosystems enhancement & protection
The program commenced in 2014 and has assisted the community in building edible gardens, restoring natural environments and providing educational tools. Since inception the program has provided a total funding assistance of $22,526 to 20 projects.
Council encourages the successful applicants to support local businesses by sourcing all materials and labour locally and to use native plants endemic to the local area where possible.
Applications for 2021 are now closed
However, applications may be considered at any time and will be assessed based on factors such as; the environmental benefit, urgency and funds available. Click here(DOCX, 63KB)
for an application form and guidelines.
Below are past projects that received funding through the Small Environmental Projects Fund:
- St Raphael's Catholic School - Organised working bees with the students and parents and set-up irrigation and planted native grasses (Fountain Grass) along a terraced bank in the school yard. This softened and stabilised an unusable steep bank within the school grounds. Final Report(PDF, 2MB)
- Mid Lachlan Landcare - Developed and installed an interpretive sign at Belleview Hill Reserve, ‘Conserving Grassy Woodlands'. The sign provides information about grassy woodland ecosystems and why it's important to restore and protect them for future generations. It also provides an informative and educational display on the natural features within the Reserve, while raising awareness of threatened species. Final Report(PDF, 913KB)
- Darbys Falls Progress Association - Local volunteers restored 3 gardens within the village of Darby’s Falls. Working bees involved cleaning out the existing beds and the planting of natives, mulching and the use of local bush rock. One of the garden beds included a naturally established silky oak. Final Report(PDF, 983KB)
- Cowra Early Childhood Centre - Purchased raised garden beds and created an edible garden. The children assisted with filling the beds with soil and planting a mix of herbs and vegetables. They continue to take a hands-on approach in caring for the gardens and learning about sustainable living. Final Report(PDF, 200KB)
- Rotary Club of Cowra - Enhanced the riparian zone of Waugoola Creek at Europa Park by removing weeds and planting native trees and understory. The project has helped to stabilize the creek bank and provides a habitat and corridor for the local wildlife. Final Report (PDF, 152KB)
- Cowra Public School - Created an avenue of trees and bushes along the northern boundary of the school and a native garden around the school canteen. The trees and garden will help to provide shade and screening from the adjoining road, buildings and public carpark. Final Report(PDF, 2MB)
- Cowra Lady Golfers - A team of volunteers planted mixed varieties of Bottlebrush and Gums around the Cowra Golf Course to replace trees that had died and to revegetate barren spaces. The planting of the trees adds to the presentation and natural environment of the site. Final Report(PDF, 319KB)
- Cowra Early Childhood Centre - Created a nature playground with native shrubbery and grasses; logs to walk along; rocks to climb on and a dry riverbed to play in. The play area is now an inviting, safe and sustainable natural environment for all of the children and families to enjoy. Final Report(PDF, 2MB)
- St Raphael's Catholic School - Constructed a productive food garden by acquiring old water tanks and converting them into vegetable plots. Students are learning through real-life experiences about planting, nurturing and harvesting seasonal produce. Final Report(PDF, 3MB)
- Cowra Information & Neighbourhood Centre - Created a 'Community' vegetable garden to educate families in the benefits of sustainable food growth practices. The produce from the 'Growing Gardeners Family Garden' project will go towards CINC programs and be offered to clients and volunteers. Construction of the garden involved volunteers clearing an unused area behind the centre, installing raised garden beds and the planting of seasonal produce. Final Report(PDF, 473KB)
- Cowra Public School - Extended the avenue of native trees and bushes along the northern boundary of the school and created a native garden in the Primary Playground. The new gardens have improved the aesthetics of areas that were previously weeds and dirt; will provide shady green areas for the children to sit and play under; and screen the playground from the adjoining shopping centre car park. Final Report(PDF, 275KB)
- Mulyan Public School - Created an 'Outdoor Garden learning Space' to educate the students on how plants grow, plant identification, composting, worm farming and cooking and eating fresh food. It is also used as a schoolyard classroom where students reconnect with the natural world and understand the true source of their food. The students participated in creating the herb and vegetable garden by building a 'no dig' patch and installing raised beds, hanging pots and wall planters.
- St Raphael's Catholic School - Expanded their productive food garden for the Secondary Students by creating raised vegetable wicking gardens. The students documented construction of the garden as part of the Archibull Prize and it has provided many opportunities for the students including being actively involved in the planning and building stages and investigating the science behind vegetable gardening. Final Report(PDF, 1MB)
- Carinya Early Childhood Services - Bush Tucker Garden Project
- Cowra Show Society - Revitalisation of the Pavilion Garden Project
- Gooloogong Public School P&C - Sustainable Food Garden Project
- Mulyan Public School P&C - Sustainable Living Garden
- St Raphaels Catholic School P&F - A Patchwork of ecosystems
- PCYC Cowra - Healing Garden
- St Raphaels Catholic School P&F - Compost Tumbler Bins