The Government created the Jobs for Nature Fund in 2020, in response to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. It’s intended to both tackle pandemic-driven regional unemployment and the declining health of Aotearoa New Zealand’s waterways and landscapes.
SBN saw this as a fantastic opportunity to deepen and expand the support we have been offering with the Million Metres Project. In partnership with the Department of Conservation, SBN has administered several million dollars of grants from the Jobs for Nature Fund to support our community partners working on natural regeneration projects.
We have provided short-term employment and experience to more than a 100 people up and down the country. This is set to generate more than 50,000 hours of conservation work, including waterway replanting, weeding, maintenance, pest control and broadwalk building.
This programme has also enabled SBN to forge new and important partnerships with Te Orewai o Ngāti Hine, Nga Uri o Hau Native Nursery and Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei. The next stage of this work is a proposal to expand and extend its reach, to take in urban nature regeneration work, rather than just rural, and include a wider range of jobs.
What our partners are saying
“This project has had such a huge impact on our natural environment and our community. All new team members had been impacted by Covid, all in varying ways. Some were unable to find employment, others were working in forward facing industries and were worried for their health. Some owned businesses that relied on tourism or wedding industries. Bringing the diverse range of people together under this project has also created new networks and friendships that extend outside of work.”
Kristin Busher, Project Lead, Waiheke Resources Trust
“The fact that the workforce comes from rural communities has had a huge positive impact from a social and economic viewpoint. We have one local young woman who came back on the family farm after having lost her job during COVID. It was hard for her to find a job, but the Jobs for Nature scheme has allowed her to find a new direction right on her doorstep!”
Nic Caviale-Delzescaux, Director, Terra Tangata Environmental Consulting