Walking along the Yarra River in Warrandyte, east of Melbourne, you immediately notice the sound of the constant, rushing river, weaving and curving its well-formed path in the abundant forest of green and brown. Then you look around and might see a group of young kids wading in the shallow edges; a family set up with camping chairs and fish and chips; a couple strolling along with an energetic pup lapping at their heels.
I’ve been lucky enough to grow up in the close surroundings of nature, on a property in Warrandyte – an area defined by its green beauty, its freshness, and abundant wildlife.
Out here ‘the river’ is a destination, and a place to admire. It’s the centre of a community that shares a love for the exquisiteness of nature.
I think most of us have a place like this that makes us appreciate how lucky we are to have an opportunity to experience them. It’s these experiences that we must fight for. These experiences are so important to our communities and our sense of identity.
As a new volunteer for Environment Victoria, I am constantly learning new ways to be a helpful part of an environmentally friendly future. I have been involved in giving information out to people in regards to EV’s Repower campaign, which includes setting up information stalls. I am new to this and at first it was a little daunting to approach people on the street to let them know about the cause. However, I’ve found that the more I jump in and have conversations, whether they agree or not, the more rewarding it is. Volunteering has helped me build on my confidence and communication skills, and it has also given me the ability to converse with people about something that I care about (and often they care about it too!).
I made the first step to volunteer after talking to a friendly Environment Victoria member at the Sustainable Living Festival. I’m so grateful that I did. I’m gaining new experiences and contributing to a cause that I believe is vital.