Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Workshops for Local Schools

BOSS is looking forward to working with Boonah and surrounding schools in 2010.

Thanks to funding from the Scenic Rim Regional Council’s Sustainability Program, local primary schools will be offered the opportunity to participate in innovative waste minimisation education.

The approach will be to support and enhance initiatives already in place in schools or to assist in introducing new concepts.

Schools will be offered a selection of themes from which to choose, with the aim of raising students’ awareness and thereby allowing them to make informed choices. The focus will be on the students as ambassadors of ‘smart waste’ behaviours, spreading the message within their socialising circles and families.

Far more than just the usual recycling messages, the program includes the opportunity learn from the entertaining Madam Mulch.

Heavily involved in the program are Rob and Jo Davies who are well known for creating junk instruments and orchestras where they improvise music from recycled materials. Their Dumplings Junk Band featured at the Recycling Festival hosted by the Cubberla-Witton Catchments Network in 2009.

BOSS to boost community awareness on being ‘resourceful’

BOSS was thrilled recently to receive ten thousand dollars from the Queensland Government through their Natural Resources Awareness grant program. The grant forms part of the government’s Toward Q2 Green Strategy.

BOSS President Sharon Murakami, said, “BOSS has been working on the ground with local community, local council and other government agencies for several years to promote and encourage sustainable living.”

“The Natural Resources Awareness grant allows our organisation to further our objectives and provide the community with creative and practical information and skills to live more sustainably.”

Boonah is at the centre of World Heritage sites, National Parks, and prime farming land and those living amongst such natural beauty are increasingly confronted with the challenges of modern living and the impact this puts on our natural environment.

Sharon explains, “Since BOSS was created the organisation has witnessed an increasing awareness and commitment by the local community to live and act more sustainably. However we still have challenges in reducing our collective carbon footprint. For example many of our larger primary producers do not sell locally.

Such local dilemmas formed the basis for the funding submission, such as the importance of promoting and encouraging local produce to be the first choice of the community.

The project involves a series of workshops and field days and the development of information packages which will culminate in a World Environment Day event on Saturday June 5.

Themes will include working with natural produce and products in the garden and in the home, including aquaponics, the myriad uses of food and waste, caring for chooks, creating musical instruments from junk, fabric making using organic material and low energy cooking methods.

The project also includes a component of tree planting to offset carbon impacts, and collation of information regarding local recycling opportunities and locally sourced products.

The overall aim is for the Boonah community to have an increased awareness of what is grown and produced locally, how to limit impacts on landfill by creatively upcycling and freecycling, and how to reduce carbon footprints.

Changing community landfill attitude and behaviour is vital as the Scenic Rim Regional Council recently undertook a carbon audit which highlighted landfill sites are the region’s largest emitters of carbon.

BOSS will work with other community groups particularly those who have a focus on primary produce and the natural environment in developing the project.

Already plans are underway for the program to provide educational workshop support to a new gardening working bee initiative where people will exchange their labour, produce, and helpful gardening advice.

BOSS member Jo Davies who is coordinating the gardening exchange scheme sees the Natural Resources Awareness grant as providing an invaluable opportunity for educational resources to transform an idea into a long-term practical solution to acting locally and living more sustainably.

For more information regarding the upcoming workshops or field trips, or to make general enquiries with BOSS please contact BOSS via email at
boonahboss@hotmail.com or phone 5463 4774.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

SEQ Living Landscapes Forum

BOSS coordinated the South East Queensland Living Landscapes Forum held in Boonah during September 2008.

The forum was hosted by the Regional Landscape and Open Space Advisory Committee and presented by the Queensland Government Department of Infrastructure and Planning and the South East Queensland Council of Mayors.

The keynote speaker was Dr John Williams, BSc Agr (Hons) PhD Commissioner of the Natural Resources Commission of New South Wales.

The forum focused on solutions for urban and regional dependencies to enhance livability; managing multiple values to maintain economically viable and socially vibrant communities; and working together in an uncertain future of climate change and increasing fuel prices.

The forum also included the launch of the Fassifern Rail Trail and a Tree Planting Ceremony.

Entertainment during the forum included Sounds of the Land, a celebration of Australian bush music with Bush Telegraph, and many field trips around the beautiful Boonah region.

welcome to the blog of the boonah organisation for a sustainable shire

BOSS focuses on the values, principles, and aspirations which underpin a sustainable future for Boonah and beyond. BOSS is committed to ensuring our community has a vibrant, caring and green future with a visible connection and celebration of its past and the natural environment.
Membership is open to everyone who shares those goals.

Currently our membership extends from Boonah across Beaudesert and Mt Barney, and over to Beechmont, the Gold Coast and Brisbane.