The Friends of Parks organisation is suitable for people of all ages who have in interest in the wondrous diversity of the state's fauna and flora.
“Whilst the Volunteers Protection Act 2001 gives legal protection from personal liability to volunteers doing voluntary work for an incorporated
community organisation or government organisation, it does not cover additional matters such as personal injury.
To ensure protection for the organisation and volunteers in relation to personal injury, organisations may need to consider obtaining specific insurance cover. This additional cover can provide benefits to volunteers following injury, disability or even death while carrying out duties for their organisation. A volunteer is not protected under the Act if they:
You should also refer to the Induction document where the above is discussed further.
STEP 1: Find your Friends Group
Identify a Friends group in your area of interest. Visit their website or contact the Friends of Parks Inc Secretariat, which will provide you with contact details.
STEP 2: Contact your Friends Group
Contact a Friends Group and enquire about what activities they engage in and the types of roles you could enjoy.
Each Friends Group decides upon the range of activities it wishes to undertake and how you contribute depends on what your personal goals are. Activities can focus upon biodiversity conservation and/or cultural heritage projects.
Biodiversity conservation requires a range of strategies that often emphasise bushcare techniques (minimal disturbance weeding) but also can require chemical or biological control of weeds and/or feral animals.
Mapping and/or monitoring of species can provide an opportunity to use or develop knowledge of particular plants or birds. Also photographic skills!
Heritage projects can utilise and develop maintenance and construction skills or research skills as you delve into the history of a site. Not everyone is interested or able to contribute their time when working bees are scheduled.
There are other opportunities available! Producing NEWSLETTERS or PUBLICISING the work of your group or issues at your site; creating INFORMATION DISPLAYS; organising EDUCATIONAL OR CULTURAL EVENTS, or the SOCIAL PROGRAM for your group. And the challenge of FUNDRAISING can exercise and develop the creative talents of others.
Think about the time you wish to commit
Attend the Friends' next meeting and/or working bee
STEP 3: Become a Member
Each Friends Group requires a small joining fee, and operates autonomously, in concert with their District Ranger. You will receive a copy of INDUCTION DOCUMENT which explains how you can become a responsible and valued contributor.
DEW staff are available for training from the parks designated ranger to specialist DEW officers. They are a fount of information on a number of topics.
Your "new employer" DEW also offers training courses throughout the year. They may be anything from chainsaw use, flora identification use to poisoning weeds and are well worth attending.
Your initial mentors will be your friends already involved with the park. Many friends become members of a friends group because of an interest in fauna, flora, history, geology. Over time they collectively accumulate a wealth of knowledge about many of the above and in particular the park you have friended.
Enjoy your volunteering.
Respect the park in which you have an interest and treat it as if was your own.
Follow safety instructions when required to protect yourself and your fellow friends. A good general rule when you are not sure is to ask yourself "what would a reasonable person do in these circumstances?" All volunteers are covered by the Volunteer Protection Act as discussed at "Am I protected."
Apart from the planting, weeding, trail making, activities in which you may get involved you may also volunteer to be say the President, Secretary or Treasurer. These are positions that carry specific responsibilities but none that the "reasonable person test" will not cover.
Find a Friends Group in your area of interest.Browse our directory
Contact a Friends Group and ask about what activities they engage in and the types of roles you could enjoy.
Each Friends Group requires a small joining fee, and operates autonomously, in contact with their District Ranger.
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