Projects

What are we doing to inspire Catchment Group action?

The Thriving Southland Change and Innovation project, funded through the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Land Use Programme, supports and enables Catchment Groups to lead the way towards productive and sustainable land use and to share their well-grounded knowledge and expertise.

There are currently 13 major, 4 medium and 5 small projects underway by Catchment Groups across Southland.

VIEW PROJECTS BELOW

LARGE PROJECTS  |    MEDIUM PROJECTS   |    SMALL PROJECTS

LARGE PROJECTS

Aparima Freshwater Management Unit

Aparima Community Environment (ACE)

Understanding the Land to Drive Change

Hedgehope Makarewa Catchment Group

Aquavan Action

Gore-Waimumu Catchment Group and Waihopai Catchment Group

​Alternative crop establishment methods for better wintering outcomes​

Hedgehope Makarewa Catchment Group

Beyond Regulation Matāura Catchment Project

Mataura FMU Catchment Group

Investigation using LUCI-Ag

Makarewa Headwaters

Women’s Enviro Evening

Mid Oreti, Hedgehope Makarewa and Makarewa Headwaters 
Catchment Groups

Next Generation Farming Systems

Next Generation Farming Systems – Project Reference Group

Understanding Land & Water to Effect Change

Wendonside Incorporated Society

Koura Sediment Trap and Catchment Development Plan

Otamita Catchment Group

MCI sampling for the Mimihau River

Mimihau Catchment Group

Understanding and Improving Catchment with Wetland Development

Between the Domes Catchment Group

On-Grass Winter 2022 Demonstration

Pourakino Catchment Conservation Trust

MEDIUM PROJECTS

Building our groups “Why” with Roger Dalrymple

Mataura FMU Catchment Group

MCI Scoping and Introduction for the Lower Mataura Catchment Group

Lower Mataura Catchment Group

MCI Introduction and Engagement Group Building Event

Tokanui, Waikawa and Waipapa/Haldane  Catchment Groups

Understanding International Farming Communities

Mid Oreti, Lower Oreti and Waihopai Catchment Groups

SMALL PROJECTS

ONGOING

Operational Engagement Grants

Project Description 

Thriving Southland provided operational engagement grants worth $500 each to all Catchment Groups to help with basic operational costs in their first year. 

Objectives 

  • To help Catchment groups with operational costs in their first year.

COMPLETED

Te Anau Catchment Group Information Evening

Catchment Group:
Te Anau

Project
Te Anau Catchment Group Information Evening

Funding:
$2,004.50 excl. GST

Period:
Sept 20 to Oct 20

Project Description 

A social and informative get-together at Te Anau squash club featured Catchment Group leaders speaking about what has worked well for their groups and an independent environmental consultant discussing freshwater rules alongside Environment Southland Land Sustainability Officers. The role of Thriving Southland and the funding available was also discussed.  

Objectives 

  • Enhance communication and engagement by raising awareness of Te Anau Catchment Group in the farming community.
  • Identify Catchment Group leads and general group members. 
  • Provide local farmers information around Te Anau and other Catchment Groups’ backgrounds and successes.
  • Introduce Thriving Southland, their coordinators, resources, funding and support available.
  • Have environmental consultants and ES present to answer questions and provide information around the new policy and rules for freshwater relative to farming.  
  • Hold a positive social event where likeminded farmers can share concerns and solutions and be made aware of support available to tackle issues.  

Outcomes 

  • Establish a database of people who want to be involved in Te Anau Catchment Group, including a core group of leaders/members – a starting point for the group to progress.
  • Raise knowledge and awareness of what a Catchment Group is, what they do and what success looks like.
  • Increase knowledge of freshwater rules; empower individuals to ask questions and receive answers specific to their circumstances.  
  • Attendees feeling positive, informed and supported, and perceive Catchment Groups and Thriving Southland as an avenue for positivity, support and information.

Surfing for Farmers

Catchment Group:
Lower Aparima

Project
Surfing for Farmers

Funding:
$2,000 Ex GST

Period:
Dec 20 to Mar 21

Project Description 

Southland farmers are under a lot of pressure, with increased anxiety levels and wellbeing issues. Surfing for Farmers is about getting farmers off farm and having some fun through a physical and social activity. 

Objectives 

  • Switch off from daily issues, release pressure, embrace nature, meet new people, engage with the community, learn a new skill and be off farm for a while. 
  • Improve mental wellbeing while also raising awareness of farmers’ relationship with water and local resources

Outcomes 

  • Learning a new skill – 10 surfing sessions at 2 hours each. 
  • Improving wellbeing and mental health. 
  • Providing new network channels, relationships and discussions. 

Runoff Detainment Bund & Nursery Field Day

Catchment Group:
Mid Oreti

Project
Runoff Detainment Bund & Nursery Field Day

Funding:
$250.43 excl. GST

Period:
Oct 20 to Nov 20

Project Description 

Sedimentation of the Mid Oreti catchment area is a very significant problem. Losing sediment and associated nutrients off farm from erosion is a problem affecting many hill country farmers.  
 
The AB Lime runoff detainment project is the first of its kind in the South Island and a new approach to reducing sediment and other contaminants off a hill country farm. Catchment Group members were invited to AB Lime to view the runoff detainment bund that they have built and to speak about sediment and runoff mitigations. 
 
There was also an opportunity to visit the AB Lime native tree nursery and learn about how they have grown more than 10,000 trees in one year from seed and how to propagate plants in your own backyard.  

Objectives 

  • To educate and encourage interested parties on a sediment/runoff detainment project that is being carried out at the AB Lime dairy farm.  
  • To educate and encourage propagation of native trees.  

Outcomes 

  • Education around sediment and runoff control on farming hill country, and encouragement to implement sediment retention bunds and other control measures on farm. 
  • Education around native tree propagation from seed and community encouragement to grow their own natives. 
  • Networking with other Oreti Catchment Group members and the wider Oreti catchment. 

Wyndham Show Engagement and Telling Our Story Event

Catchment Group:
Three Rivers

Project
Wyndham Show Engagement and Telling Our Story Event

Funding:
$1,047.96 excl. GST

Period:
Dec 20 to Jan 21

Project Description 

Three Rivers Catchment Group combined with Edendale Nurseries, Menzies College and Environment Southland hosted a marquee site at the Wyndham A&P Show in December 2020.   

Menzies College showcased what had been achieved on the Mataura River, while Head of Science at Menzies College Dr Kit Hustler was on hand to share the learnings on the water science. Edendale Nursery shared their knowledge on riparian planting and pest control. Lead farmers from the Catchment Group were also present to talk with locals about the strength of working together in Catchment Groups, and Environment Southland provided an interactive pest management children’s game.

Objectives 

  • Build community engagement and public awareness of the Three Rivers Catchment Group and strengthen relationships with local businesses and the school.  
  • Offer a chance for the community to be involved in a family day out and engage in a social setting. 

Outcomes 

  • Registration sheets collected and new email addresses added to the Catchment Group database. 
  • 38 attendees.

Mid Calving and Lambing Get Together

Catchment Group:
Waihopai

Project
Mid Calving and Lambing Get Together

Funding:
$684.25 excl. GST

Period:
Sept 20 to Oct 20

Project Description 

A mid-calving and lambing community event was held at the Woodlands Tavern to bring the Waihopai and Woodlands community together and to learn more about their Catchment Group, and how to get involved. Environment Southland created a large topo map for the group to understand the area their catchment encompasses. 

Objectives 
  • Increase awareness and engagement of the Waihopai Catchment Group.  
  • Learn about Catchment Groups, what other groups are doing or have done, what could the Waihopai Catchment Group look to do in the furure?  
  • Identify a community vision, purpose, goals and values.
  • Community support and wellbeing check-in during calving and lambing.   

Outcomes 

  • Increased community knowledge of what the Catchment Group can do.  
  • Clear Vision, values and goals for the Catchment Group going forward, with overall community input.
  • Improved community wellbeing with the social event, providing new network channels, relationships, discussions and new members to the group. 

Wintering Tour

Catchment Group:
Three Rivers

Project
Wintering Tour

Funding:
$768.69 Ex GST

Period:
Jul 21 to Sept 21

Project Description 

An afternoon event where farmers in the Three Rivers Group toured their catchment on a bus to visit different wintering systems, including a sheep wintering system, a bailage and grass, a barn system and a crop system.  

Objectives 

  • To get farmers out seeing different wintering systems.
  • To talk about Good Management Practices and look at changes they can make in their own on farm systems.  

Outcomes 

  • Discussion about change and how to access information required to make a change. Practical and peer to peer learning.  
  • Social interaction, getting out and talking with fellow farmers about the challenge that is intensive winter grazing. 

Community Consultation

Catchment Group:
Dipton

Project
Community Consultation

Funding:
$488.91 excl. GST

Period:
Oct 20 to Nov 20

Project Description 

A community consultation meeting was held at the Dipton Golf Club to help with the initial step in forming a Catchment Group. Guest speaker Geordie Eade from the Pourakino Catchment Group talked about forming a Catchment Group. The role of Thriving Southland was explained as well as the opportunity for project funding.

Objectives 

  • Raise awareness among the Dipton community of what a Catchment Group is and the role of Thriving Southland.
  • Determine topics of interest for people wanting to be involved in the Dipton Catchment Group.  
  • Hold a well-attended meeting with locals fully engaging in the discussion.  

Outcomes 

  • A summary of topics of interest, community values and challenges ahead, as shared by locals wanting to involve themselves in the Dipton Catchment Group.  
  • Collection of a comprehensive contacts list.
  • Development of a vision and objectives for the Catchment Group.
  • Indication of people interested in being on the core committee.  

Community Social and Wellbeing Event with guest speaker Wayne Langford

Catchment Group:
Greater Dipton

Project
Community Social and Wellbeing Event with guest speaker Wayne Langford

Funding:
$1,635.42 excl. GST

Period:
Sept 21 to Oct 21

Project Description 

Wayne Langford is a well-known farming and wellbeing speaker. Wayne’s inspiring story tells how a change in perspective has changed his farm, his family’s life, and his community for the better.  
Thriving Southland’s Project Lead Richard Kyte spoke about the various projects Catchment Groups across Southland are involved in to help spark some ideas for the Greater Dipton Catchment Group. 

This was also an opportunity for people to get together and chat at a busy time of year to support individual and community wellbeing.  

Objectives 

  • Bring the Greater Dipton community together for an informative and social event on farmer and community wellbeing, featuring a well-known, inspiring and relatable speaker who has the potential to help individuals, families and communities be healthier, happier and more productive.  
  • Promote the Greater Dipton Catchment Group and Thriving Southland, and give people a chance to talk to their local Catchment Group members about their ideas. 

Outcomes 

  • Farmers gained a better understanding of mental wellbeing and what personal and community actions can be taken to help support each other.  
  • Dipton community came together at a busy time of year (calving and lambing) to relax, be together and learn about how they can look after their personal and community wellbeing.  
  • Raised awareness of the Greater Dipton Catchment Group and shared new ideas for the group to pursue in the future. 

Understanding the soil, geology and water of the Balfour Catchment

Catchment Group:
Balfour

Project
Understanding the soil, geology and water of the Balfour Catchment

Funding:
$1,635.42 excl. GST

Period:
July 21 to Aug 21

Project Description 

Locally farmers are aware of issues with nitrate levels but don’t fully understand where, how and why this is occurring and what options they have to make effective mitigations. The Balfour group engaged specialist speaker Dr Clint Rissman of Land and Water Science to collate and present water, soil, geology information relevant to the land managers in the Balfour catchment and to provide them with a base knowledge of their catchment.   

Objectives 

  • Provide Balfour farmers and land managers with science-based information that is understandable and relatable.   
  • Give farmers an understanding of why and what the issues in their area are in a non-blaming way.
  • Start discussions on what solution options exist or could be looked at as a Catchment Group.
  • Hold an enjoyable, social and informative evening. 

Outcomes 

  • Farmers have a better understanding of soil, geology, water and land-use interaction in the Balfour catchment. 
  • Farmers with scientific information have more confidence to make decisions around environmental improvements. 

Recycling – what can you do on your farm, your household and in your community

Catchment Group:
Waihopai, Waikaka Stream, Greater Dipton and Three Rivers Catchment Groups

Project
Recycling – what can you do on your farm, your household and in your community

Funding:
$4,235

Period:
11 April 22 to 14 April 22

Project Description 

These four Catchment Groups from the Oreti and Mataura catchments are joining forces to bring Trish Rankin from the Taranaki catchment to present practical on-farm, household and community recycling options through two daytime and two evening events. For rural communities there are limited recycling options available and this project will allow people to understand their options around reducing, reusing and recycling. 

Objectives 

  • Provide practical on-farm and household recycling options to start the recycling momentum within the Oreti and Mataura catchments. 
  • Start discussions on what recycling options exist or could be looked at a Catchment Group level. 
  • Create social and informative events to bring communities together. 

Outcomes 

  • Farmers and the wider community now have a better understanding of recycling options both on-farm and household, and can take relevant actions to reduce, reuse and recycle both individually and collectively. 

Wellness Grants

Period:
July 21 to Dec 21

Project Description 

Running from July to December 2021. With the 2021 lambing/calving season being a particularly hard one in Southland, Thriving Southland provided a grant worth $500 to enhance wellbeing among Catchment Groups. The grant can be used for events that bring people together for a chance to get off the farm and connect with neighbours. 

Objectives 

  • Provide a social outlet for Catchment Groups to boost morale and improve wellbeing. 

Outcomes 

  • Catchment Groups really made the most of this opportunity by organising get-togethers and social events. One group came up with the idea of putting their $500 towards the prize pool for an on-farm Christmas decoration competition, which proved to be extremely popular across Southland. 

COMPLETED PROJECTS

Southland Catchment Group Christmas Competition

 The aim of the competition - to encourage everyone to get on board and spread some rural festive cheer throughout Southland. 

Women’s Enviro Series 2021

Mid Oreti Catchment Group, Hedgehope Makarewa Catchment Group and Makarewa Headwaters Catchment Group

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