EcoMatters Environment Trust, in partnership with Whau River Catchment Trust, has recently completed the much-needed replanting of a section of the Te Whau Pathway.
The pathway connects the Manukau Harbour at Green Bay to the Waitemata Harbour at Te Atatū. Offering new off-road walking and cycling tracks for commuters and recreational users, the Te Whau Pathway improves access to the Whau River.
It's an ambitious project, and work has been completed in sections. Several community organisations have been involved in the restoration.
EcoMatters has a long track record in delivering community environmental initiatives. Formed in 2002, the not-for-profit organisation has a broad remit, focusing on climate action. EcoMatters supports the community by providing knowledge and tools to restore nature, grow food, reduce waste, ride and fix bikes, and live sustainably. Based in New Lynn, the organisation also runs workshops and provides opportunities for hands-on environmental action out West. ‘EcoMatters' mission is to help care for our precious environment,' explains Carla Gee, Chief Executive Officer.
Partnership working is vital to delivering EcoMatters’ mission. Carla says they work closely with central and local government, community organisations and not-for-profits.
The Te Whau Pathway restoration couldn't have gotten underway without a critical partner – the Whau River Catchment Trust. ‘We worked together on replanting the Tony Segedein Esplanade Reserve section of the pathway,’ says Carla.
She advises that the reserve was overgrown with pest plants, which smothered natives, and disrupted the area's delicate ecology, impacting birds and wildlife.
The area has been restored thanks to funding from the Your West Support Fund and the help of 50 volunteers from the Whau River Catchment Trust. Pest plants have been removed and replaced with around 400 natives, including flaxes and grasses of all shapes and sizes.
And the volunteers have been back to water and maintain the area, ensuring the native plants thrive. ‘It’s been a fantastic collaboration,’ says Carla.
‘The Trusts has been a terrific supporter of environmental projects over the years,’ reports Carla. She advises that the funding has had an even bigger impact because it was matched with in-kind donations, including volunteer hours and plants from community nurseries.
Now West Aucklanders can enjoy more of our local green spaces and waterways.