CERES (a Community Environmental Park in Brunswick) is an award-winning not-for-profit sustainability centre located on Wurundjeri land, by the banks of the Merri Creek. It’s a rare Melbourne schoolchild who hasn’t enjoyed an excursion or outing to CERES, or been involved in one of its wide range of education programs. CERES has a broad, multi-faceted reach, with an overall mission to maintain a practical conversation about how we can live well together in a sustainable way. As one small part of this, it encourages schools to reduce the carbon footprint of their CERES excursion travel emissions by contributing to the purchase of two trees per excursion – and most do.
Semester One, 2019 trees (102) were planted directly under the Westgate Bridge, Port Melbourne VIC. The park (Westgate Park) is managed by friends and volunteers of Westgate Biodiversity who attend planting and maintenance sessions at the park most weeks. They also manage a nursery, Bili Nursery that is open to the public.
A special shout-out to Tony Flude, George Fotheringham and their team from Westgate Biodiversity who manage Westgate Park. The founder of the Park, 19 year old Naomie Sunner, discovered the Park back in 1999. She thought this neglected, abandoned park – the closest she could get to the river mouth – was nonetheless beautiful and had such potential! When she realised that there was no-one looking after the Park, she started her own group called Friends of Westgate Park. Both Tony and George were 2 early members.
Westgate Biodiversity members and other volunteers gave up part of their Saturday to improve Westgate Park’s Southern Wetlands. This area was added to the park several years ago and has undergone a transformation. Using plants provided by the amazing CERES, the wetlands area is a stunning addition to the Park especially with the spring flowering plants.
Tony Flude | Co-ordinator | Westgate Biodiversity
Once again, thank you to the team at CERES who regularly kick in to support our community tree planting projects. These trees are closer to home than usual. I hope you do get to visit the Park one day to see what an amazing place it is – right in the heart of Melbourne.
Sláinte – Colleen
Colleen Filippa is the Founder and Director of Fifteen Trees. This year, Fifteen Trees celebrates 10 years. To be part of the movement of people looking to make a tangible contribution to our community groups and our native environment, contact Colleen at <[email protected]> or on 0400 040 659.