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Environmental Education & Awareness


> Download The Whau River and the Kurt Brehmer Walkway PDF

> Download The Avondale Te Whau Heritage Walks PDF


It is valuable to involve children in conservation because their enthusiasm spreads out to parents and the community.

One of the key aims of Whau River Catchment Trust (WRCT) is to support local schools to integrate the ecological restoration needs of our local waterways with environmental education within the school curriculum. Through a mixture of creativity and technology, knowledge and experience, our local streams and waterways become an interactive classroom and living laboratory.

We have mutually supportive relationships with a number of schools within the Whau River catchment. This support ranges from one-off community based restoration activities to the full adoption and restoration of a neighbouring stream or waterside reserve. Some of the numerous ways that the Whau River Catchment Trust (WRCT) is able to support your school programs includes:

  • Delivery of an audio-visual presentation of Whau River catchment ecological issues to a small group, or to the whole school. Presentations can be developed to align with specific school curriculum topics or highlight specific issues such as storm water pollution or biodiversity.

  • Provision of resources – including our publication ‘The Whau – Our Streams, Our River, Our Backyards’ by Jo Mackay, complete with interactive CD-ROM for your library and now available on the WRCT website.

  • Fully supervised re-vegetation (planting eco-sourced native plants) and plant maintenance activities. The riparian planting season extends from April or May through to October however there are numerous other activities that can be undertaken outside of these times in preparation for planting – So book now.

  • Weed identification and removal, rubbish clean-ups from riparian areas and estuaries. This is often carried out in conjunction with other environmental organisations such as Keep Waitakere Beautiful or the Weed Free Trusts in order to ensure sustainable weed/rubbish disposal solutions e.g. composting etc.

  • Water quality and stream life monitoring programmes in conjunction with Wai Care.

  • Supervised pest monitoring and pest control activities.

  • Field trips e.g. Conservation Trails, Bird counts, Plant Identification, Eco Education Games.

  • Adoption of a stretch of stream as an on-going whole school ecological restoration /living laboratory project. Support encompasses choice of site, site analysis and development of a Management Plan through to full restoration and on-going monitoring and maintenance.

  • There are numerous opportunities to link stream restoration activities to specific curriculum based topics within the mathematics, statistics, science and technology, geography, art, personal health and physical education curriculum areas e.g. surveys, bird counts, water testing etc.

  • Raising awareness about the wider issues that affect the Whau catchment also provides numerous opportunities to link into the social sciences – languages, history, media and arts curriculum areas. The creative possibilities are endless – Cultural Connections, Art & Photography auctions, Documentary making.

  • We also work with a range of other organisations to provide specific expertise such as Auckland Council, Wai Care, Enviroschools, DOC

Check out our Education Resources and Links


Contact Gilbert Brakey - WRCT Manager for the Whau River Catchment Trust (WRCT) if you would like more information about any of these opportunities.


Check out our Citizen Science Page

Check out our Brochure

Education E-News

One of the key aims of Whau River Catchment Trust (WRCT) is to support the 28+ schools within the Whau River Catchment to integrate the ecological restoration needs of our local waterways with environmental education within the school curriculum.

Do join us onsite at a stream, river or reserve near you – all tools, gloves etc. supplied. Or we can come to you with an introductory talk about local environmental issues and some of the solutions including– how our everyday actions can reduce pollution and enhance the quality of habitats for a variety of local species. As far as possible, activities are tailor made to suit your needs and availability. If you are thinking of joining us, then we’d love to hear from you.

Contact Gilbert Brakey our WRCT Manager at or 027 437 8867.


Education for Communities and for Businesses

In addition to providing regular riparian ecological restoration activities such as planting days and clean ups, the Whau River Catchment Trust (WRCT) is keen to engage with and support local communities and businesses to raise their awareness and knowledge of issues that impact on the ecological health of our rivers and streams and the wider environment within the Whau River catchment.

Invite WRCT staff to talk to your organisation, neighbours, scout or church group, boat club or business about your vision and how your actions can make a difference. Learn more about storm water runoff, pollution and water quality monitoring; improving water quality for recreation, swimming and boating; erosion, sedimentation and stream bank stabilisation; providing habitats for aquatic and terrestrial wildlife, fauna and flora identification and monitoring, cultural, historical and social connections to the Whau River catchment.

Ask WRCT for advice and help on weed management, eco-sourcing and what you can plant on your section if you live next to the river or a stream. Join or start up a local Neighbourhood Group for your area.

Monitor the river or stream near you. Anyone can join in or can be trained up to start a regular weed control program, or a pest animal monitoring & control program, or a water-monitoring (Wai Care) group for your neighbourhood.  Or monitor the river or stream near you for rubbish or pollution and help clean up dumped rubbish. Learn how different types of rubbish and pollution impact on the health of streams and waterways, and discover how to avoid pollutants from entering a river or stream near you.

Report any pollution incident to the 24-hour Auckland Council Pollution Hotline 09 377-3107 and to the WRCT

We also work with a range of other organisations to provide specific expertise.

Check out our education resources and links. 

Historical Web Link: Chimaera Colonisation

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