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TfS National Manager, Don Roa, writes, “Welcome to Te Māra a Tāne our bi-monthly e-newsletter designed to keep our sponsors, schools and partners well-informed on the Trees for Survival programme.

“Regionally, we are strong and solid in Auckland; strengthening the programme networks in Wellington and Tauranga; engaged in major expansion in the Waikato with important opportunities emerging in Northland, Horizons and Nelson Marlborough. The contribution from our sponsors and partners is fundamental to the stability, growth and success of the TfS programme.

“We are grateful major funding from the Waikato River Authority will enable the establishment in 2013 of 15 more schools in the Waikato Region as part of the Waikato River Clean-up Project we are engaged in with Waikato Regional Council and Enviroschools. To date very positive responses have been received to the call for expressions of interest for project funding, from schools in the catchment (the Waikato and Waipa rivers from Cambridge and Te Awamutu to Ngaruawahia, and Otorohanga to Ngaruawahia).

“Additional interest is also being generated in other Waikato areas including Huntly, Hauraki and Thames which we will progress as further sponsors become available. Potentially, the opportunity exists this year to add another 20 sponsored schools to the current ten.

“Under the direction of Regional Manager Peter Gilberd growth continues in the Wellington area with a lack of funding the only constraint on further expansion. With 13 active schools and seven schools seeking entry when sponsors are found, the TfS programme there is in good heart.

“The establishment cost for schools requiring the Plant Growing Unit is $5000 and annual fees of $720 to meet the programme support and resource costs. We continue to seek to grow our team of corporate, business, service clubs/organisations and individuals willing to become involved in this community, school-based educational environmental programme – planting native trees to combat erosion, improve water quality and regulate water flow, increase native biodiversity as well as offsetting carbon usage and just doing good.

“The opportunities in Northland, Horizon and Nelson Marlborough again will be governed by securing sponsors for the schools wishing to join TfS.

“A further very fulfilling dimension has emerged recently for TfS, working with our elderly people and I am pleased to announce another application from a Rest Home/Retirement Village wanting to incorporate the programme.

“Heads up and moving forward.”

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