New temporary nature jobs boost NZ’s green recovery

11 Sep 2020 by

The Sustainable Business Network is collaborating with seven community-based conservation organisations to create at least 36 new temporary nature based roles, in partnership with the Department of Conservation.

The Partnering to Plant initiative has been made possible by an $800,000 grant from the Government’s Kaimahi for Nature/Jobs for Nature fund.

This funding will enable the regional partners of SBN’s Million Metres Streams Project to establish 34 eight-week fixed contract positions within community based conservation organisations up and down the country. These roles will deliver waterway replanting, but will also be engaged in other conservation activities. This could include planning, weeding, maintenance, pest eradication and management, monitoring, fencing and boardwalk building.

SBN will be administering two co-ordinating roles for the initiative. The hope is that SBN will also be able to generate more funds and support to extend the duration of some of the roles.

Georgina Hart leads SBN’s Water Programme.

She said: “We’re delighted to assist in this way. It's helping business and staff. It's boosting the environmental restoration work our partners are doing across Aotearoa. It’s great to see government support for a green recovery that will bolster community security and ecological health.”

Upon announcing the funding at SBN’s Annual General Meeting, Minister of Conservation Hon. Eugenie Sage, said: “Really delighted by your Million Metres Project and the work that Rachel Brown and the team at SBN have put into partnering with businesses and partnering with community organisations to restore the health of our awa.”

Megan Williams, WAI Wānaka is one of the partners, based in Wānaka, Otago. She said: “WAI Wānaka is thrilled to work with Million Metres on the Partnering to Plant initiative. This funding will allow us to employ up to eight full time positions for two months, to work on improving our local environment. The region has been hit hard by Covid, particularly the tourism industry. We know that affected businesses and other unemployed are keen to get out and take part in planting projects, maintenance and pest control work.”

Editors notes:

The Million Metres Streams Project was established in 2014 to help landowners and local communities raise funds for waterway restoration. It’s already supported the planting of more than 67km of waterway in 62 projects nationwide. The goal is to plant more than 1,000km in the next four years. As well as helping to boost this year’s planting season, this new partnership will help extend Million Metres reach and impact.

SBN’s Partnering to Plant initiative partners include:


  • Matuku Reserve Trust
  • Waiheke Resources Trust  


  • Te Whangai Trust

Hawke’s Bay

  • Whangawehi Catchment Management Group


  • Waimakariri District Council, on Behalf of Silverstream Advisory Group


  • WAI Wanaka
  • Sinclair Wetland/Te Nohoaka o Tukiauau

Editors Note:

To find out more, or arrange an interview with any of the participants, please contact:

Fiona Stephenson
Head of Communications & Marketing, Sustainable Business Network
021 233 1053