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A first portal of call

Daniel Bouwmeester    October 13, 2022    3 min read   

Ever felt like volunteering, but had no idea where to begin or whom to ask? Ipswich City Council’s Better Impact Volunteer Portal can put you on the right track.

Nearly 400 volunteers from across the Ipswich region currently help the Council run smoothly, thanks to accessibility tools like the Portal.

It lists all currently available positions according to category and time frame, with detailed information and links for signing up.

Community, Culture, Arts and Sport Committee Chairperson and Division 3 Councillor Andrew Fechner directed residents of all ages to the website for rewarding experiences.

“If you are interested in joining a bushcare group or get involved with our visitor centres and city events, visit Council’s Volunteer Portal to see opportunities open across Ipswich,” Cr Fechner said.

Volunteering for the Council covers a range of roles, including: helping out at festivals, concert groups, and poetry readings; staffing public information and education centres, libraries, and history rooms; and working outdoors with bushcare, nursery, and nature centre groups.

There are currently two opportunities listed on the Portal within Greater Springfield, both involving riparian (riverbed) preservation and regeneration activities, such as watering, weeding, and litter clean-up.

Bellbird Park’s Woogaroo Creek Bushcare group, which formed just a year ago, meets at the nearby Eugene Street car park at 2pm on the last Sunday of every month.

Above: Volunteers of the Opossum Creek Project planting 550 new native trees and shrubs. Image: SLNC.
Top: Image: Ipswich City Council.

The Opossum Creek Project – run by Opossum Creek Bushcare, which is part of Springfield Lakes Nature Care (SLNC) – is currently postponed due to Council works and this year’s extreme weather, but will recommence in November.

Environment and Sustainability Committee chairperson and Division 4 Councillor Russell Milligan said volunteers are essential to support and enhance the gardens, parks, reserves, and waterways of Ipswich.

“Partnering with volunteers such as these Bushcare groups, some of which have been active for more than 20 years, is one way Council is working with the community to improve the city’s natural environment,” Cr Milligan said.

The Council also encourages residents with passion and drive, and a bit of group-organising experience, to set up new bushcare groups.

“As part of Council’s Bushcare program, each volunteer group receives tailored support including on-the-ground training, insurance cover, plants, tools and mulch.

“Whether it’s adding a burst of biodiversity to your garden with free plants, or showing your love for a park by joining a local bushcare group – get out there and get Ipswich growing!”

Residents can access the portal by searching online for “Ipswich Better Impact Volunteer Portal”.

Daniel Bouwmeester

Daniel was born in a mining town in New South Wales to Dutch and Welsh immigrants, before relocating to Logan City, where he attended Canterbury College for twelve years. He pursued his passion for music by completing a first-class honours degree at the University of Queensland (UQ), and later signed with a local record label. He has travelled the world from a young age, including a student exchange in rural France, a job working the ski lifts in Colorado, and visits to the islands of the South Pacific. After a six-year career in market research, Daniel returned to UQ to complete a Bachelor of Journalism and Arts dual degree, majoring in political science. His varied experiences at home and abroad have contributed to a passion for spreading good news while defending the truth buried inside complex societal paradigms.