Hero photograph
Photo by Bernadette Shaw

2020 despite our trials and tribulations has been a most successful year for the Burnside Environment Group.

Jon Land —

We have advanced our plantings in Jellie Park and have now planted over 600 native trees along the Hewlings stream.

The Christchurch City Council has proved to be a fine partner and they have committed to providing trees and resources once more in 2021. 

Our own little forest has now been gifted the name of Te Uru by our local rūnanga. Te Uru meaning both a grove of trees and referring to the whakataukī, me uru kahikatea. Kahikatea grow close together intertwining their buttressed roots with neighbouring kahikatea to support each other in swampy grounds and harsh weather conditions. Recognition for the idea of naming of our forest needs to be given to Piper Pengelly and we also thank Whaea Amber for her work with our local Maori guardians in establishing an appropriate name. 

The Environment Group has also worked alongside Helen Townsend and Peter Maher in establishing a community garden. Produce is already flowing and we all believe that fresh veggies, herbs and fruit have a special part to play in staff wellbeing.

This year 220 students have given time and energy to the Environment Group and the 2500 hours of service have made an enormous impact on the schools grounds. We would like to thank them for their commitment, wish our Year 13s well and hope that many of our junior students will be once more active in the group next year.

 Particular thanks also go to Chiara Mercer and Maya Halford who have been the group’s photographers this year and done a wonderful job. We would also like to thank the Sustainability Council for their work. They have been a self-organised group this year and have provided invaluable service. They have raised funds and awareness and have been a fountain of good ideas and initiative. The group could also not function without the enormous input from Burnside staff. Their dedication, good humour and reliability has made this a productive and pleasant group to work with and we are always looking for additional volunteers to help manage the large numbers of students who meet each Wednesday after school.

Jon Land Burnside Environment group leader