Oct. 7, 2015
Going Green Education Award winner for 2015
Keep Australia Beautiful's (KAB) Blue Star Sustainability Metro Awards was good news this year for Randwick Sustainability Hub, the community education component of Randwick Community Centre.
The sustainability unit of Randwick City Council 2015 was awarded:
- Winner — Going Green Education Award for Randwick’s Sustainability Education Hub at Randwick Community Centre
- Highly Commended — Environmental Achievement Award to sustainability unit manager, Peter Maganov
- Highly Commended — Sustainable Systems Award for Getting the total picture on Randwick’s Energy Savings
- Highly Commended — Overall Metropolitan Sustainability Award.
Worthwhile words of advice
This was the first year of operation as the Blue Star Sustainability Awards that grew out of the Sustainable Cities, Clean Beaches and Tidy Towns award programs. The Awards are designed to promote environmental sustainability, litter reduction, community engagement, connection and volunteering.
The Awards were made in Manly in September this year. Hosting the evening was writer, comic and Manly local, Wendy Harmer, who made jokes about motherhood, nature, Manly rivalries and made a good-natured ribbing of NSW Minister for Environment, Mark Speakman.
Her message was that change is possible if we just roll up our sleeves and get to work.
Recognition for sustainability unit's hard work
That is exactly what has been happening at Randwick Sustainability Hub and that is what was recognised in the KAB awards.
The community centre, where the Sustainability Hub runs its courses, workshops and events is rolling out the ideas of a community participation planning program that some years ago produced a vision for the development of the community centre as a multiple-use public place in Randwick.
The new classroom, part of the development, has been in use for a school term and work is being completed on the habitat trail that will be used by the Hub's popular science education program for schools. The program links with the national education curriculum, effectively redeveloping and repurposing an uninteresting patch if native lomamdra grass and shrubs into an educational resource.
During an earlier phase of the development, the Permaculture Interpretive Garden proposed by the community consultation turned a largely disused wasteland of low quality lawn into a venue for the Hub's courses and into an edibly-landscaped public park now popular with local people. The community centre buildings themselves were remade into an educational feature when they were retrofitted for energy and water efficiency.
The KAB awards recognise the work of Council's sustainability unit in creating an educational and recreational place in Randwick. As Wendy Harmer said, change is possible if we just roll up our sleeves and get to work.
Story by Russ Grayson, October 2015