We thought being a finalist for the ‘Restoration’ category of the inaugural Mayoral Conservation Awards was already a great effort and quite an achievement. The other finalists in this category were:

  • Restoration of Mangemangeroa Reserve
  • Tararata stream
  • Introduction of tieke to Shakespear

Very worthy opponents, with the people of Mangemangeroa in the business of restoration and planting for the past 22 years, and the team at Shakespear headed by one of our most recognizable rangers (Matt Maitland). The team at Tararata Stream were doing great work as well by looking after native fish, and working with artists and scientists in this South Auckland neighbourhood.

But the jury, in their wisdom, chose us as winner! Our project, not even two years old but run by experienced and dedicated people, with rare native birds and plants, and funded without council money: they must have liked some or all of it ;).  A huge thank you to Auckland Council and their sponsors for organizing this event and another huge thank you to the jury, among them Councillor Penny Hulse, Councillor Alf Filipaina, Glen Wilcox and local board members.

The awards were presented by Mayor Phil Goff and the keynote speaker Dr Michelle Dickinson (aka Nano Girl) shared her lively story of becoming a New Zealander and did an impressive job of convincing us of the need to get our next generation into science and conservation.

With the other category winners like Frazer Dale, Windy Hill Reserve, CatchIT Schools, Kaipatiki Project Nursery, EcoTrack and The Chewcard Project, Matuku Link was in very good company.

John Sumich got on stage, Colleen as our Rivercare representative and yours truly were there at the night, but Matuku Link couldn’t have done it without all of you! This is OUR Mayoral Award, let’s celebrate together at our upcoming second birthday party in November.

Annalily van den Broeke – secretary Matuku Link