Conservation Volunteers - Volunteering Post COVID-19
The Covid-19 lockdown has been a hard time for everyone, and not-for-profits and community groups have been no exception. At Conservation Volunteers New Zealand (CVNZ), the past months brought a lot of uncertainty. As an organisation whose very aim and purpose is to bring people together to volunteer on practical, on the ground conservation activities, we were suddenly unable to do the very core of our work – recruiting and working with teams of volunteers. In addition, projects which could no longer be delivered on, dried up and many of our funding partners are no longer in a position to support us. It was also a difficult time for many of our volunteers who on top of their own worries during lockdown, were no longer able to get out on to projects which is important for the mental and physical health of many as it allows them to regularly connect with nature and their communities. Some of our volunteers have been getting involved for years.
Despite this, CVNZ are very fortunate to come out of this relatively unscathed compared with many others. Staff, who had been reduced to part time work are now back full time and we have been able to restart many of our projects. This could not have come at a better time for us as this week marks the start of the 2020 planting season. Each year, CVNZ plants up to 150,000 native trees across the country and we expect this winter to be one of our busiest planting seasons yet. We have grown tens of thousands of trees in Auckland alone and will be assisting many community groups and landowners in the planting of tens of thousands more. Due to changes with Covid-19, there will be many challenges in getting these trees in the ground. This year, we will be hiring planting crews at some of our larger planting sites and we will also be running many community planting events across Auckland to give our communities an opportunity to get involved.
This year, we need your help more than ever!