In the June 2012 Newsletter, I advised that the increasing number of members (now over 600), the complexity of the organisation, and increasing accountability requirements had prompted the Committee of Management to undertake a review of ANGAIR’s office administration.
I am pleased to inform you that the review has been completed and the report discussed by the Committee. The report contained much valuable information about how we can further improve administrative support to all our members, especially those who undertake the crucial conservation work of ANGAIR.
The report clearly identified the need to provide consistent, comprehensive and skilled administrative support based on a clear set of procedures.
Following the discussion, the Committee decided that the first step should be to try and find a volunteer to develop the procedures, and this is currently underway. The Committee also decided to apply to the Australian Government for a grant under its Grants to Voluntary Environment, Sustainability and Heritage program, which is available to Voluntary Environment Organisations to help with their administration. The Committee will, if successful use this grant to help pay for an “experienced office management” person. Any appointment to this position will be for six months initially, to make sure we are getting good value for money.
We have also appointed a small working group to identify the projected costs, and other sources of funding for the position for final approval by the Committee at the November meeting.
I acknowledge this is a major step for ANGAIR, which has over the last forty-three years been highly successful in its conservation efforts, which were supported by a huge effort from volunteers, who did the necessary administrative tasks. It now seems clear that ANGAIR needs to support our volunteers in a more effective way.
Several members have recently been busy taking guided wildflower walks with groups from outside the area, as well as the students from Anglesea Primary School. ANGAIR has also received phone calls from people unable to attend the Wildflower Weekend, wanting to know where to go to see wildflowers. It is pleasing to note the interest from outside the area, in the rich biodiversity of the Anglesea and Aireys Inlet District.
ANGAIR, in recognition of the Society’s achievements, was invited to present a paper about ANGAIR’s history and achievements, at the Victorian Landcare Conference in October. Margaret MacDonald gave the presentation entitled “42 years of caring for an unique coastal environment”.