The Victorian Nature Stewards program is suitable for anyone over the age of 18, who has a general interest in learning about their local environment, getting involved in environmental action, meeting other like-minded people, professional development, or considering an environmental career.
Nature Stewards is funded by the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water, and Planning, and hosted by Outdoors Victoria. The two inaugural Victorian programs will run in early 2019, in partnership with the City of Melbourne and the City of Melton.
Each program will run over 10 weeks, providing 36 hours basic training. This will include ten class sessions (2.5 hours each) and three field sessions (4 hours each). During this time participants will learn together about the Victorian and local environment, through topics spanning geology, soils, climate, plants, animals, conservation land management, and environmental interpretation, given from western and Aboriginal perspectives. Additionally, the program will offer a chance to meet others in the local community and will provide practical skills and information to assist participants to connect, get active in nature, and find local environmental volunteering opportunities.
There will be specialist guest speakers during the class and field sessions, from local Aboriginal communities, local and state government, community environmental and citizen science groups, and other local experts.
The Nature Stewards program has been initiated in Victoria by the McGregor family, with inspiration and advice from well-established Master Naturalist programs in the USA, especially the Texan program. The concept was developed with collaborators across many Victorian organisations from government, the not-for-profit sector, and interested individuals.
Melbourne Program: 7th Jan- 25th January, 2019
Melton Program: 7th Jan- 1st February, 2019
Questions about either program
A vibrant community throughout Victoria of well-informed and trained citizens, actively engaged in conserving, observing and interpreting nature.
The Nature Stewards program promotes environmental literacy and stewardship of nature through discovery, action, and ongoing learning. The program directly supports participants in training and volunteering, thereby generating benefits for the wider community and the environment.