Student designers invited to help protect river

GREATER Taree City Council, in partnership with Manning Great Lakes Waterwatch, is inviting primary school aged children to enter a competition to design a sign that will help to protect the Manning River.

Council has received funding through the NSW Estuary Management Program to undertake a water quality monitoring program in the Manning River estuary and to raise community awareness of the importance of the river system and the impact people's actions can have on its health.

This will largely be achieved through the educational signage put up in popular locations along the river, which the children will have the chance to design.

Council's team leader environmental services, Tanya Cross, outlined how children play an important role in influencing behaviour changes within their families by leading by example.

"They can make decisions to put litter in the bin. They can pick up after their dog when they take it for a walk, and they can learn how to compost," said Tanya. "Children can also come to understand that when they help to wash the car, it should be done on the lawn or at a carwash. This is because 'only rain goes down the drain'.

"It is these seemingly small actions which can add up significantly to protect the river, which will be much more meaningful if the whole community does them too," said Tanya.

In conjunction with this project, school classes will also be invited to learn about the river and the issues facing it in sessions with the Manning-Great Lakes Waterwatch Coordinator, Kirsty Hughes.

Interested schools can contact Kirsty on 6592 4830 or at waterwatch@midcoastwater.com.au for more information.

Competition entries need to be submitted to council by Friday, May 16 with the winner receiving a $100 gift voucher and the runner-up a $50 gift voucher for Manning Valley Books.

For more information on the competition and to download an entry form, please go to taree.cc/design, contact Tanya Cross on 6592 5248 or email tanya.cross@gtcc.nsw.gov.au.

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