Costa Georgiadis is joining forces with Junior Landcare Learning Centre to ask Aussie kids ‘What’s in your backyard?’
The online platform created for the initiative features fun, easy-to-use learning activities developed by education professionals to help children be aware, empowered and active in caring for their local environment.
Costa believes that children can’t be involved in caring for the environment if they don’t love it – and one way to do this is for children to get their hands and feet in it.
Throughout National Biodiversity Month and the school holidays, children are encouraged to grab a camera, or use a mobile phone camera, to capture photos of the flora and fauna in their backyard, and then share them with Costa and Junior Landcare, explaining why their backyard is important to them.
“We’re calling on all Aussie kids to get outside and explore their local environment,” said Costa.
“Your backyard might be a garden. If you live in an apartment, your garden could be plants on your balcony. You may live near a park or bushland area, or a river or wetland. You may live on the coast close to the sea, or on a farm – these could all be your backyard!”
This year, together with First Nations educator, Wiradjuri man Adam Shipp, 10 new First Nations learning activities have been developed by Landcare Australia to teach children and educators about how to have a connection to Country.
The resources have all been designed to help children build knowledge and deeper connections to biodiversity, where their food comes from, recycling and waste management, and First Nations perspectives.
“Young people play a vital role in caring for our environment, which needs all the help it can get!”
“Junior Landcare gives children -no matter where they are across the country- the opportunity to understand nature, connect with it and take action to protect the world around them. With Junior Landcare, we are educating the next generation of Landcarers, and this starts with parents, carers and educators encouraging simple moments outdoors,” said Costa.
Children -with the help of their parents, carers and educators- can submit photos to the Junior Landcare website, under one of four themes including biodiversity, food production, First Nations perspectives and waste management, to be in the running to win one of nine cameras (RRP $250), book hampers and other great prizes. One school or youth group will also win a visit from Costa to check out their environmental projects.
Joining Costa as a campaign supporter and host of Channel 10’s The Living Room, Barry Du Bois, said that he wants his ten-year-old twins, Bennett and Arabella, to experience the same sense of wonder around nature that he had when he was young.
“As a young boy, I loved exploring the creeks, beaches, animals and secret hiding spots in my own backyard, and I want that for Bennett and Arabella. There’s something magical about nature, and the ‘What’s in your Backyard’ campaign will help kids to find that magic in their own backyards.”
The ‘What’s in your backyard’ campaign opened on 6 September, as part of National Biodiversity Month, and will close on 31 October.
To find out more visit www.juniorlandcare.org.au/get-involved