Time to apply for environment grants

Applications are now open for this year’s Teachers Mutual Bank environment grants.

Members in schools, colleges or early childhood centres are invited to apply for one of five environment grants of $3000 each, sponsored by Teachers Mutual Bank.

Typical projects could include habitat conservation, biodiversity, vegetable and kitchen gardens, water and energy saving, tree planting, recycling, waste, composting and Aboriginal cultural projects. A winner last year, St Bernard’s Primary School Batehaven teacher Sallyann Burtenshaw said the grant, which she won for a computerised hydroponic garden project, had brought the school and local community together.

“Local businesses, the students, staff and parents have all got involved,” Sallyann said.

Another previous winner, Vocational Education teacher Bridget Ward also said her project had become a focal point for the school.

Bridget’s school, Loyola Senior Catholic College in western Sydney, won the grant last year for their wicking garden.

’Wicking’ means drawing moisture. The school created a number of garden beds using the wicking technique.

“We put them in over the Christmas holidays and planted some seeds. I told the gardener not to water them at all, and he was amazed how they survived that hottest, driest time of the year without any watering.”

“The flow on effects to the school community have been very positive.”

Applications close 19 July. For applications forms and further information contact Betty Tan at betty@ieu.asn.au