Gateway students attend a chainsaw safety course organised by ESAI.

Project Tinaku provided close collaboration with local primary schools to help finance and organise planting events, while also assisting Ellesmere College students in pursuing agricultural and environmental careers through a partnership with the school’s Gateway Programme.

Over the course of three years, the Tinaku Project  joined forces with Te Ara Kākāriki to execute Kid’s Discovery Plantout (KDP) days with two nearby primary schools, Southbridge and Leeston. Initiated by Te Ara Kākāriki, the KDP program enables children to connect with nature, learn about native biodiversity, and contribute positively to their local surroundings. Throughout the project’s duration, Tinaku has supported seven activities in collaboration with these schools.

The planting events proved really popular among both students and educators. Feedback from these events was exceptionally positive, with students not only enjoying the planting experience but also engaging in learning about insect and bird habitats, identifying native plants via interactive scavenger hunts, and exploring harakeke weaving.

The Tinaku Project also helped to facilitate the involvement of Ellesmere College students in a substantial planting event at the DOC Lakeside site in September 2022.

In addition to the planting work we also partnered with Ellesmere College’s Gateway Programme to support senior students in navigating their chosen paths in agricultural and environmental careers. Over three years, Tinaku sponsored a total of 20 students, recognising the evident benefits of the programme.

Upon completion of the Gateway Programme, students acquired valuable skills and qualifications, fostering greater confidence in achieving their career aspirations.

Lou Drage from Te Ara Kākāriki shows primary school students how to plant native trees.

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