19 May 2024

South Wagga Rotary's Rocky Hill Regeneration project launches new website and brochure

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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three people in bushland with Rotary brochures

South Wagga Rotary Rocky Hill Regeneration project coordinator Milena Dunn (left), Transgrid community and stakeholder engagement officer Rebecca Peel and South Wagga Rotary volunteer David Dunn. Photo: Shri Gayathirie Rajen.

South Wagga Rotary’s Rocky Hill Regeneration project has a new website and an information brochure.

South Wagga Rotary volunteer Rocky Hill Regeneration coordinator Milena Dunn said the project had received $5000 from Transgrid earlier this year.

“It’s really gratifying to know people appreciate what you are doing,” Milena said. ”Because the first year was a hard slog, and when we got money, it had to be used on vegetation and nothing else.

“[With the $5000], I can do a basic website, and one of the volunteers said our brochures are big, and people only need something small that they hold in their hand with some QR codes to take them to the sites.

“The volunteer lady who designed the cards is amazing but didn’t want to be recognised. It was a couple of months of work, and she had done it after work on her own time.”

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Milena said she wondered how to disseminate the information to the public when she wasn’t well versed in social media.

“‘I’m not really a Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat user. I need some other people to do that,” she said.

After failing to receive funding from two different organisations, Milena applied to Transgrid.

“Transgrid has a thing in the paper that says you couldn’t apply if you already had a grant from them,” she explained.

“We had $1000 from them a couple of years ago, and I thought we would not get anything.

“I rang them, and they said, ‘Just put it in.’ It was the same grant I got knocked back for, but they [Transgrid] gave $5000.”

Thanks to $19,553 in funding from the NSW Community Building Partnership, the regeneration project obtained a container, storage items and solar panels, and paid for site preparation.

South Wagga Rotary’s Rocky Hill Reserve Regeneration project started in May 2020. It received vegetation funding from Wagga Wagga City Council, and all the volunteers used their own equipment.

The restoration of 51 hectares started with removing woody weeds, while the regeneration process involved planting trees and shrubs. The volunteer group has added more than 750 plants.

Rocky Hill is home to various fauna, including eastern grey kangaroos, wallabies, snakes, blue-tongue lizards, legless lizards, and 67 bird species.

The woodland community also has white box, Blakely’s red gum, kurrajongs and white cypresses.

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Milena said botanist Geoff Burrows had been helping with the restoration project by advising the volunteering group what to plant and warning them about certain weeds.

The volunteers have dedicated 2370 hours since 1 July, 2021, to the regeneration project.

Milena said South Wagga Rotary was supported by volunteers of all ages and invited anyone interested in volunteer work to contact the organisation.

To find out more about the Rocky Hill Regeneration project and how to become a volunteer, click here.

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