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Native Bee Keeping Project at Byron Bay Awarded Major 2016 Grant by Northern Rivers Community Foundation

November 26, 2016 Accolades No Comments Email Email



The Northern Rivers Community Foundation has announced its 2016 annual grants round, leading with The Katia Native Bee Youth Employment Project from Byron Bay Herb Nursery receiving $25,000 of a total $133,00.

The project aims to establish a native bee keeping business that provides employment opportunities for local indigenous youth and youth at disadvantage.

The Katia project will focus on manufacturing beehive boxes and farming native bees that can be sold or leased to the community and horticultural industry. The bees will be used for honey production as well as pollination of food crops and nut trees such as macadamias.

Participants will gain experience and skills in carpentry, native bee keeping and an understanding of the use of native bees in local indigenous cultural practices such as food and medicine production and implement making.

The Byron Bay Herb Nursery currently employs 23 people in their herb nursery, including 16 people with a disability. They also employ 4 young adults in their social enterprise area, which focuses on providing employment for youth at disadvantage through innovative projects such as composting.

The NRCF was created 12 years ago by generous individuals within the

community, and has distributed grants across 87 organisations and 211 projects meeting social, cultural and environmental need. The 2016 announcements take the total amount committed by the Foundation to the community to over one million dollars.

The smallest grant of $1,000 went to Northern Rivers Wildlife for training 8 volunteers to handle venomous snakes.

NRCF’S Chair John Callanan said “that between both these grant winners, another 20 projects further reflected the diversity of need within the community.”

“We have found the innovation, creativity, articulation and sheer enthusiasm shared by all applicants to be heart-warming. We are seeing a new awareness and understanding of how to progress individual causes, be they from underprivileged groups, pop-up and continual arts seeding, access to health care, educational opportunities, life skills, law, justice and community connections – including social media hubs. Scan through the successful applicants for this year, you will be astonished.”

Grantees range from a Clown Doctors Program at Lismore Hospital, a Northern Rivers Indigenous Communities suicide prevention program, a deaf dance theatre workshop – to a an E-space digital hub, and swimming lessons for former refugee children.

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