Catchment team supporting community action
A passion for rural life, land and water, and agriculture binds Thriving Southland’s catchment coordination team. The team of five are out and about and getting stuck into conversations about how they can best support catchment groups.
There are now 35 groups covering over 90% of Southland, with more groups forming. Senior Catchment Coordinator Rachael Verhaegh says the team enjoy working with people in the catchment group communities.“We are here to encourage and support groups with meetings, events and to help get projects off the ground” she says.
Alongside Rachael, is Sarah Thorne, well-known to people in catchment communities as she was the energetic Southland coordinator for the NZ Landcare Trust Southland Farmer-Driven Community Catchment Groups Project. “I love working with Southland's Catchment Groups and all the agencies and people that support them. I put my heart and soul into my work, and love seeing the real and lasting changes we are making across Southland,” Sarah says.
Originally from the UK, Clare Officer, dairy farms at Centre Bush. “I enjoy working with and supporting people to enhance their farms, catchments and rural communities for the next generation,” Clare said.
Tania Clarke, alongside her husband Alan, grows grain, farm deer and run their agricultural business during the warmer months. “As a proud Southlander with a passion for rural life, I believe there is no better place to live and raise a family”, Tania said.
Rounding out the team is born and breed Southlander, Tessa Miller. "I am excited by the opportunity to support and learn from other farmers and growers, while contributing to the growth of the Southland region and the network of catchment groups," Tessa says.
If you want to get in touch with the team please click here.