State's most popular cadets program celebrates 20th anniversary

A Bush Ranger cadet from Onslow abseiling at Karijini National Park.
A Bush Ranger cadet from Onslow abseiling at Karijini National Park. Photo - DBCA
  • Youth-based conservation and education program, Bush Rangers WA, celebrates milestone.

  • Bush Rangers has the highest participation of Aboriginal students, female students and students with disability of any Cadets WA program.

Western Australia's biggest cadets program, Bush Rangers WA, has celebrated its 20th year.

Attending the annual Bush Rangers conference today in Perth, Environment Minister Stephen Dawson commended the program that encourages secondary school students to develop practical nature conservation skills and contribute to their local community.

Since its inception in 1998, the program has seen more than 18,500 young people take part, contributing 1.9 million volunteer hours to conservation and community projects.

There are currently 67 cadet units around the State from Kununurra to Esperance, comprising of more than 3200 secondary school students. Students take part in regular camps where they carry out planting, fencing or weeding; as well as adventurous activities including abseiling, swimming with whale sharks, and rock climbing.

Bush Rangers is coordinated by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions and is part of the broader Cadets WA initiative, supported by the Department of Communities.

Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson:

"Bush Rangers is the largest program within Cadets WA and has the highest participation rates for Aboriginal students, female students, and students with disability, with 20 per cent, 45 per cent and 28 per cent respectively.

"The program's emphasis on volunteering and community involvement is at the heart of its success. In 2017, the 350 school teachers who run the 67 cadet units gave more than 52,000 hours of time to the program, most of it voluntary.

"Bush Rangers is reaching people in remote and regional areas. In particular, it is helping inspire young Aboriginal people to gain practical nature conservation skills to manage their traditional lands.

"Bush Rangers is proving to be an excellent starting point for careers in conservation and land management, leading to real employment opportunities for young people."

Minister's office - 6552 5800

Last modified on Thursday, 22 March 2018 15:38