Huon Valley Council, Tasmania
Huon Valley Council, Tasmania

Huon Valley Care Groups

The Huon Valley Council allocates an amount of funding every year to support, maintain and advance the Huon Valley 'Care' Network. The network aims to "protect and improve the ecological balance and water quality of the Huon Region" and includes Landcare, Bushcare, Coastcare, Rivercare, 'Friends of' and Waterwatch groups, as well as schools, community groups and individuals.

The Huon Valley Care groups work across a variety of land tenures, including Council reserves, Crown land, private land and school grounds. These volunteers work together on projects including weeding, planting, collecting and propagating native seeds, walking track construction and maintenance, water quality monitoring, community education, protection of Aboriginal heritage sites, and flora and fauna surveys.

We are very lucky in the Huon Valley to have so many inspirational volunteers working to restore degraded areas and enhance remnant native forest areas, creating new habitat for our native wildlife.

If you are inspired to join a Care group, contact the NRM Unit on 6264 0300 for help contacting a group near you.

Volunteer Care Group Grants

The Huon Valley Council allocates an amount of funding every year to support, maintain and advance the Huon Valley 'Volunteer Care Group' Network.

There are three types of Grants available:

1. Association Membership Grants

The Huon Valley Council is able to continue to fund memberships to Landcare Tasmania, the Southern Coastcare Association of Tasmania (SCAT) and the Understorey Network (USN).  Application forms are to be completed in August and returned to the NRM Unit.

2. Incorporation and Annual Return of Association to the Tasmanian Business Affairs Department

Each new care group is responsible for obtaining initial incorporation.  However the HVC NRM Unit will fund subsequent annual incorporation requirements.  All annual returns to the Tasmanian Business Affairs Department should be completed and forwarded to the NRM unit within six months of the end of the financial year (an extra fee is incurred if submission is late).  The Business Affairs Department will then invoice the Care Group directly which can then be sent on to the NRM Unit for payment.  The above website also provides information on how to exempt your Care group from the formal auditing process.  However this does not exempt your group from payment of the annual fee.

The benefits of incorporation are significant, and include:

  • Protects individuals and their assets from liability
  • Ability to manage own funds directly without the involvement of a sponsoring organisation
  • Access to a wider variety of direct funding and grant sources (e.g. Australian Government programs, Regional NRM grants, Landcare Tasmania grants)
  • Exemption from income tax (ie. any interest earned in the group's bank account, income raised through donations etc.)

3. HVC Care Group Grants

Huon Valley Council makes an annual allocation to support Care group projects and activities in the Huon Valley. Project Grants up to a maximum of $2,000 are available to the Huon Valley Care groups to undertake on-ground works within the Huon Valley municipal area. Only one application per group, per year can be considered. Council's NRM staff can assist with project development and application preparation. Grant applications are assessed by Council's NRM Advisory Committee, and the Committee makes a recommendation to Council regarding the project. Applications are assessed on how well the project aligns with NRM priorities and benefit to the community.

Click on the following link to download a copy of Huon Valley Council's Care Group Grants application package.

 

Other Care Group Support

The Huon Valley Council's NRM Unit can provide additional support to the Huon Valley 'Volunteer Care Group' Network. Support activities include:

1. Insurance

Funding for Volunteer Care group insurance is available through a Landcare Tasmania Administration Grant. The LAP (Landcare Assistance Program) is the application form for assistance for insurance plus other administration costs. A LAP grant application form will need to be filled out and sent into Landcare Tasmania to cover insurance.

2. Joint Training Workshops

The Huon Valley Council NRM Unit, Kingborough Council Bushcare Unit and the Parks and Wildlife Service currently run educational sessions and workshops for the benefit of volunteer care groups.  A scheduling sheet will be sent out as new activities are added to the program.

3. Volunteer Equipment Available

The NRM Unit has a wide range of equipment for volunteer care groups to utilise.  This includes a trailer.  If you require the use of any equipment, it is available to pick up on request.  Please give us sufficient notice so that we can make sure the items are available at the time. In 2009 the NRM unit was successful in obtaining a Volunteer Equipment Grant from the Commonwealth Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs.  Among other requested items the NRM unit now has available extra wheelbarrows, mattocks and a pair of arthritis friendly secateurs for volunteer groups to use. 

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