On behalf of Bees Business, Western Sydney University and the NSW Environmental Trust, I am inviting you to participate in the launch of the first–ever Australian Pollinator Week celebrations. We hope you will join us in this new and exciting project, to build community awareness of the importance of native pollinators and their role in driving biodiversity and ecosystem sustainability.
In the northern hemisphere, during the last week of June, “Pollinator Week” has been celebrated since 2007. Because June is the middle of winter in the southern hemisphere, it is an ineffective time for Australians to celebrate the importance of pollinators. We are proposing to launch Pollinator Week on the 15th of November 2015 for one week.
Some of you will already know about our community education project, Bee Aware of Your Native Bees, which ran from April 2014 for a year. This project is an extension of the initial Bee Aware… project, financed with some leftover funds. So it's not a big project, but promises to be the start of something bigger. Because funding is only small we have decided to run activities based around a ‘Central Event’, at Eskbank House, Lithgow, NSW which previously participated in the Bee Aware of Your Native Bees project. Then by using the Central Event as an example, in almost–real time, activities can be shared with the ‘Virtual Events’. The Virtual Events will be set up by volunteer community groups. Some of these groups are already members of the "Bee Aware of Your Native Bees" Facebook group, which now has membership of over 2,000 members. Activities will be held on the first day of Pollinator Week (Sunday the 15th of Nov) so that they can be recorded and shared with social media communities. They can participate in similar activities at the same time or on any of the other 6 days of Pollinator Week. We will be encouraging participants to share the daily events for the week, on social media.
The dates for Pollinator Week have been chosen to coincide with Charles Sturt University's “wild pollinator count” project (wildpollinatorcount.com), which has been running since April 2014. By combining the two projects we will be able to extend our reach for both projects and increase the potential collection of data pertaining to our native pollinators.
The community will be invited to take part in a variety of activities such as:
Educational resources, based around the site activities, have been developed to support the Central and Virtual Event hosts in their activities. These will help participating groups plan for the activities and gather any materials needed prior to the event.
All resources are downloadable from the Bee Aware of Your Native Bees Facebook group site "Bee Aware of Your Native Bees" or here from the links below. If you are interested in participating in some way or have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me.
I’d like to extend a HUGE thank you to all those people who hosted a Pollinator Week event!
I’d also like to thank all of you for supporting the events, whether in person by attending, or by liking and sharing the posts for the events.
There were 23 events held, most within the Sydney region, but also extending into NSW. There were several held in the South East Qld area, by Matthew Middleton (I think he single–handedly educated most of the schools within the region). There were also two events in Victoria and one in Western Australia.
I estimate that 759 people attended those 23 events. The number of images posted in association with the events was 85 and Daniella’s Little Valley Farm video had 313 views.
Posts / images associated with the 23 events received 502 ‘likes’ and there were 1,941 people ‘reached’ on my Bees Business FB page, during Pollinator Week.
Cristina, Jen and I amassed a potential engagement of 420 people through the dissemination of posters and promotional material in public spaces.
Pollinator Week was promoted on NSW radio (3 stations) and local newspapers (3 newspapers). Educational posts about some of our pollinators reached 745 people.
There were at least 19 educational resources developed for Pollinator Week, all of which are downloadable from the “files” tab on this group page or my website.
From the time of the first promotional post for Pollinator Week, on the 16th of September (only 2 months prior to the first event), we have had 513 new members join our Bee Aware of Your Native Bees FB group!
Just think what we could achieve with some time, money and organisational support!!
So as a bit of a treat and a THANK YOU to all of you, I hope you enjoy this video. I dedicate this to our first–ever Australian Pollinator Week.
And thank you to Lithgow Living History for starring in this video!