Gordonvale State School receives Reef Guardian Award

Published: 18/11/2011

Gordonvale State High School is one of ten Reef Guardian Schools throughout the state that will be rewarded for keeping the Great Barrier Reef healthy through environmental initiatives undertaken in the past year.

The school will be presented with a Reef Guardian School Annual Award of $1000 tomorrow, as part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's Reef Guardian Schools program.

Reef Guardian Acting Director Nathan Walker said the school would receive the "Bright Sparks Award" for their inventive and resourceful participation in the program.

"Student Nathanael Honnef worked closely with the Cairns Regional Council, as well as other environmental partners, to help protect O'Leary's Creek in Gordonvale," Mr Walker said. 

"Nathanael researched the water quality of the Creek and the environmental impacts that rogue golf balls are having in the waterway. He developed and put in place a project management plan in co-ordination with the Council and the local golf club, focussing on long-term behaviour change to monitor and improve the water quality of the creek.

"His research was original and effective and he demonstrated initiative in fostering attitude change about this environmental issue in his local area."

Reef Guardian Schools are located throughout the Great Barrier Reef catchment and each undertakes a variety of activities aimed at improving the Reef's health and resilience.

Through these activities students learn about the connections between the land and the Reef and the role they can play in looking after it.

There are currently 279 schools and over 110,000 students involved in the Reef Guardian Schools program, which is now in its ninth year.

All Reef Guardian Schools manage their own resources (energy, waste, water and biodiversity), and educate their friends, families and communities about the difference we can all make by 'working together today for a healthier Reef tomorrow'.

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