Glen Eden’s Konini School is set in a beautiful location surrounded by native bush and forest. ‘We are almost unique for an urban primary school,’ says Principal Andrew Ducat. However, maintaining the 8.5 hectares of green space is challenging for the school. Now, thanks to the Your West Support Fund, that job is much easier.
Konini School has around 450 tamariki on the roll and is looking forward to celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2026.
According to Andrew, the school has a proud environmental record stretching back over ten years. ‘Sustainable education and looking after our environment are a huge part of the curriculum at Konini School,’ explains Andrew. And in 2020, the school’s efforts were recognised with the achievement of a Green-Gold status in the nationwide Enviroschools programme.
The school even has its own native plant nursery. The young people get their hands dirty growing native plants from seed. And many of the homegrown plants are used to regenerate the native bush surrounding the school. However, despite the kids’ best efforts, more plants are always needed.
The school approached the Your West Support Fund for help. Funding of $7,820 has been used to buy eco-sourced plants to help regenerate and maintain the school’s grounds.
‘The plan is to host three community planting days,’ reports Andrew. Before Covid, the school regularly held planting bees in partnership with the wider community. Andrew says the pandemic limited the number of opportunities in recent years. ‘We have missed being able to run community partnership events to look after our local ngahere,’ Andrew advises.
The first event was held last month and was very successful. The day was publicised on the Glen Eden and Titirangi community Facebook pages, and many locals turned up to help. Several hundred shrubs and plants were planted, and noxious weeds dug up.
Among the plants bought using the Your West Support Fund were several established native trees, including pūriris and pōhutukawas. Apart from providing a magnificent display, the trees will also provide much-needed shade.
Two more community planting days are planned for later this year. Everyone is welcome to get involved, so keep an eye on Facebook for updates.