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Media Release
The Hon Dr Sharman Stone
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Federal Member for Murray

6 September 2002

Schools Win Awards for 2002 'Hands on for Habitat'


Tasmanian school students artwork depicting threatened birds such as the Orange Bellied Parrot, Swift Parrot and the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagle, were today announced as the winners of the 2002 Hands on for Habitat awards.

At a ceremony at Melbourne Zoo Dr Sharman Stone, Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment and Heritage, announced that Strahan Primary School would share in $20,000 in prizes.

Members of the winning school community were at the Zoo to receive their prize of $5,000 for a conservation project. The funding may be used for a range of conservation activities, such as planting native vegetation around the school to ensure animals and birds have a home now and into the future.

Entries from the Holy Family School in Newcastle, New South Wales, and the South Johnstone State School in Queensland were runners-up in the Awards, winning $2,500 each for a conservation project. All three schools will also receive a digital camera, to help record their environment education activities, along with prize packs from Cadbury Yowie.

"The annual Hands on for Habitat Awards 2002 - a partnership between the Howard Government’s $2.7 billion Natural Heritage Trust and Cadbury Yowie - offers primary school children an opportunity to help Australia’s threatened species," Dr Stone said.

"The competition invites young Australians aged 6-12 years old to research a threatened species, answer questions and draw their chosen animal or bird in its native habitat, combining fun and creativity with education and environmental awareness.

"With about 3,000 entries in the 2002 Awards competition from 170 primary schools the judges had a tough time choosing one group as this year’s winners".

"Strahan Primary’s winning entry featured many beautiful illustrations of threatened bird species. The children also described the threats to their habitats in their local community".

"I congratulate all the students from around Australia who entered the 2002 competition. The quality of entries demonstrates a strong commitment from young people to learning about our environment.

"More than 300 species of Australia’s native animals and over 1180 species of native plants are at risk of disappearing forever if we don’t continue to work hard to save them. One of the biggest threats to our native species is loss of habitat - in many regions less than 20 per cent of native bush remains.

"I encourage all primary schools to think about ways they help save our native species," Dr Stone said.

Today’s announcement is particularly timely, ahead of National Threatened Species Day on 7 September.

Dr Stone congratulated Lyndsay Newett from Strahan Primary School for having her illustration of a Swift Parrot selected as the official National Threatened Species Day poster.

For more information on the Hands on for Habitat Awards or for a free National Threatened Species Day information kit, call Environment Australia’s Community Information Unit on 1800 803 772 or visit the website at www.ea.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/information/ts-day/

Contact:
Simon Frost 0419 495 468

Sharman Stone, David Butcher and Julie Allen with the winners og the Hands on for Habitat Awards

Dr Sharman Stone, WWF CEO Dr David Butcher and Cadbury Yowie Brand Manager Julie Allen celebrate with the winners of the Hands on for Habitat Awards 2002

Cadbury Yowie Brand Manager Julie Allen, Dr Sharman Stone and WWF CEO Dr David Butcher mark National Threatened Species Day at Melbourne Zoo with a threatened Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

Cadbury Yowie Brand Manager Julie Allen, Dr Sharman Stone and WWF CEO Dr David Butcher mark National Threatened Species Day at Melbourne Zoo with a threatened Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

Dr Sharman Stone and a student from Hands on for Habitat Awards runner up South Johnstone Primary School mark National Threatened Species Day with a threatened Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

Dr Sharman Stone and a student from Hands on for Habitat Awards winner Strahan Primary School mark National Threatened Species Day with a threatened Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

Commonwealth of Australia