September 20, 2023

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BCUC. Custodians of the Earth.

Every year we plant native trees for the kind hearted community at Ballarat Central Uniting Church. For this we are very grateful.

TREES PLANTED

353

Working for ecological justice is one of many missions ascribed to by members of the congregation at Ballarat Central Uniting Church. The church community values and supports sustainable ways of living to ensure the wellbeing of our global family. They do this by building partnerships with community groups, government, not for-profit organisations and the philanthropic sector to achieve greater social impact. For over 35 years, it has delivered fundamental support to thousands of people in the Ballarat community.

 

 

I feel I can speak on behalf of the Congregation of the Ballarat Central Uniting Church when I say we are trying to follow our Christian belief that we are custodians of the Earth and its flora and fauna.

Jan Souter | Member | Ballarat Central Uniting Church

 

Axe Creek, VIC | 90 trees | 2023

 

The trees (90) were planted at Axe Creek on property Dja Dja Wurrung land, known as djandak. The site has a Trust for Nature covenant on it to preserve it in perpetuity. The Campaspe River and Mosquito Creek run through the site.

 

A sunny September morning. Perfect for tree planting.

 

Due to long-term grazing, the understory had been destroyed with very little native grass, native shrubs or flowers remaining. The beautiful big old eucalypts were intact though. Close to the river they are the iconic River Red Gums and higher up away from the river it is mainly Grey Box, many of which are large and very old with numerous hollows. Three of these trees are registered scar trees.

The project, in simple terms, has been to remove the sheep, progressively eradicate the weeds and introduced grasses and plant indigenous grasses and shrubs in their place. Kangaroo grass, wallaby grass, wattle varieties, Austral indigo, various native daisies, hop bush, hakea and weeping she-oaks are some of the species that have been planted at this site.

 

A variety of plant species is vital to a healthy ecosystem.

 

The property is blessed with a wide range of wildlife, such as;  kangaroos, wallabies, wombats, echidnas, platypus, possums, a wonderful array of birds and reptiles. Some of the more interesting examples are the Tawney Frogmouth, Powerful owl, Azure Kingfisher, Spotted Pardalote, Tree Creeper and Robin Redbreast.

 

In early September, we began planting the trees that we were supplied to us from sponsors of Fifteen Trees. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this wonderful assistance we have received.

Bill & Jo Morrissey | Members | Axe Creek Landcare

Brisbane Ranges, VIC | 110 trees | 2022

 

The team from Koala Clancy.

 

This year, the good people from Ballarat Central Uniting Church raised funds to enable Fifteen Trees to plant 110 native trees in the Brisbane Ranges of Victoria in collaboration with the Koala Clancy Foundation. An independent not-for-profit organisation, the Koala Clancy Foundation’s mission is to provide better protection of wild koalas by planting trees for them to create new habitat. Since 2016, the Foundation has planted over 80,700 koala trees in the You Yangs and East Gippsland regions of Victoria and this year, they added another 110 trees thanks to the caring community at BCUC.

 

The native tree species included River-red gum, Yellow gum, Manna gum, Sweet Bursaria, Wirilda and Lightwood. All trees were sourced from local indigenous nursery at Western Plains Flora. Koala Clancy is working with landowners and councils to provide connecting habitat corridors for their local wild koala populations.

 

Hills of the Brisbane Ranges, VIC.

 

At the Koala Clancy Foundation, koalas are their top priority and to properly care for one species, they have to care for the entire ecosystem. When they plant trees for koalas, they are also providing habitat for local bird species such as these 4 threatened woodland birds; Speckled Warbler (top L), Diamond Firetail (top R), Brown Treecreeper bottom L) and Jacky Winter (bottom R).

 

Birds of the Brisbane Ranges. 

 

 

Grampians, VIC | 153 trees | 2021

 

Ballarat Central Uniting Church raised $820 via a coin line fundraiser to purchase 153 trees for community groups in the Grampians District of Victoria for planting, and facilitated by us with Buloke and Northern Grampians Landcare Network, who also have a long history in caring for country.

 

 

This much appreciated fundraising effort, hosted by the Church’s Social Justice Group, demonstrated that they are very concerned about Climate Change, and as many of the Congregation have settled in Ballarat from rural areas, they deeply appreciate the gift of trees and the impact that has.

 

The Uniting Church has a very strong Social Justice arm, and are a ‘vibrant, active, inclusive Christian church, committed to follow the way of Jesus, and to serve our community and world through both the work of the congregation and Uniting Ballarat.’

 

Their Tongan Minister was right there with them, and the group additionally gave some financial support to Refugees. This is not surprising with their own community encompassing a diverse background, with a mixture of life experience, culture, age and theological outlook, and always welcoming all people.

 

tree planting
The Church’s Social Justice Group stacking up the coins

 

They have a particular focus and commitment of being in relationship and community with those who are isolated, ostracised, and disadvantaged by social and political structures.

 

tree planting
The Squirrel Glider is a nocturnal creature

 

The trees and native bushes planted in the region will go a long way in securing a more protected habitat for one of our cutest marsupials, the Squirrel glider. Sometimes confused with their cousins, the Sugar glider, the way to tell them apart is that the Squirrel gliders are twice their size and less vocal. They do love climbing trees but take shelter in tree hollows during the day and will only venture out at night.

 

“We want to regenerate lost habitats, create biolinks on agricultural land, enhance and help nature and celebrate our 35th Landcare Anniversary.”

Andrew Borg | Coordinator | BNGLN

 


 

Writer: Bronwyn Blaiklock.

Bronwyn, is a multidisciplinary creative: a poet, a pianist, a reformed perfectionist. She has worked in the creative and education sectors for over 25 years. Find Bronwyn here.

 

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