Hawke legacy in Landcare 30th birthday

Hawke legacy in Landcare 30th birthday

National News
Sophie Taylor-Price is continuing her grandfather Bob Hawke's environmental vision through Landcare.

Sophie Taylor-Price is continuing her grandfather Bob Hawke's environmental vision through Landcare.

Aa

Thirty years after Landcare brought farmers and conservationists together to care for the environment, the movement is looking to build on its healthy base wi...

Aa

Thirty years after Landcare brought farmers and conservationists together to care for the environment, the movement is looking to build on its healthy base with new volunteers.

Sophie Taylor-Price, whose grandfather Bob Hawke was instrumental in making Landcare a national program, said the 30th anniversary of the program was a moment to acknowledge its success.

"When it was launched in 1989 it was done with a lot of hopeful aspiration of what could be achieved if you brought farmers and conservationists together," she told AAP on Friday.

"It's good to take a step back and look and acknowledge just how successful that's been."

Ms Taylor-Price said she met a farmer near Canberra this week who told her how much of a difference the program had made.

"He was just talking about how critical it was to have those volunteers who came onto his land and helped him actually do the work that's required to restore and maintain the landscape," she said.

Landcare chief executive Shane Norrish said the organisation brought young and old people together to make a difference.

"It only takes a small number of people to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty but their work captures and motivates others to be a part of that process," Dr Norrish said.

At a memorial for Mr Hawke following his death in May, Ms Taylor-Price told a story of how she was a four-year-old when her grandfather addressed the nation about climate change.

That speech - and a passionate year 10 geology teacher - sparked a lifelong passion for the environment and led her to become a Landcare ambassador.

Ms Taylor-Price said it was important to make sure the strong volunteer base continued.

"How do we make sure that there's a healthy succession plan and bring on young people to be involved in the Landcare movement?" she asked.

Agriculture Minister Bridget McKenzie said Landcare, launched on July 20, 1989, had played a part in developing Australian farmers' reputations as sustainable land managers.

"By making a difference and helping to create healthy soils, vegetation and supporting biodiversity, landcarers and farmers are playing a part in growing a sustainable Australian agriculture industry," she said.

Australian Associated Press

Aa