Our local Landcare movement began back in 1988 with the formation of Gympie & District Landcare Group, sparked by the interest of local graziers in the Mary Valley. The interest in Landcare continued to grow across the region and led to the formation of the Cooran Landcare Division in early 1990.

During these formable years, the volunteer landholder-led Landcare groups sought to address local land management issues, like the prevention and rehabilitation of land slips, reforestation and alternative methods of Groundsel control, a prominent agricultural weed at that time.

In 1991, Noosa & District Landcare was born when the Cooran Landcare Division received support from Noosa Council to deliver revegetation and education projects over a three-year period in the Noosa Shire. By 1992, Noosa & District Landcare had become an incorporated association.

The group began informally operating from the formally known Resource Centre in 1993, which is now our Hinter Hub store and retail nursery along Station Street in Pomona. The Resource Centre housed a reference library of land management information and plant identification materials as well as a native plants greenhouse, stocked with plants grown by volunteers for local revegetation projects.

In the beginnings Noosa & District Landcare was largely powered by a committed community of volunteers and the occasional ‘Project Officer’ funded by the periodic and short-term nature of grant funding of that time. By the late 90’s, Noosa Landcare had started to build a small team of staff, covering services like project management and nursery production. This followed with a joint initiative with Rural Futures Network, Noosa Landcare, and Queensland Department of Education, that saw the opening of the Noosa Landcare Rural Futures Centre and depot in Pavilion Street at Pomona in 2002, allowing Noosa & District Landcare to grow as community organisation and business. With our new home, Noosa Landcare started to shift the focus and change the balance of revenue from being primarily grant based to incorporating a greater percentage of fee for service, allowing us as a non-for-profit enterprise to create more sustainable employment within our industry and increase our impact on our local environment and community.

Photo supplied by Brian Stockwell.

Undertaking weed control in the early days at Yellow Belly Reserve in Cooran. Left to right: Dave Burrows, Ben Mayne, Jon Francis, Phil Moran and unknown.

Maintenance at the Kin Kin Aboretum. Left to right: Barry Craig (founding member and our first chairperson), unknown, Ron Phillips, and Paul Steels (founding member and long-term committee member).

The beginnings of the Resource Centre, now known as the Hinter Hub, back in 1993 at Pomona.

Noosa Landcare’s first native nursery being built in 1993 at the Resource Centre.

Resource displays at the Rural Futures Centre in the early 2000’s, now our depot and main office in Pomona.

Over the 30 years, Noosa Landcare has been fortunate to have had many committed, passionate and skilled individuals, from volunteers to field crew, grace our organisation and help transform our local landscape. Many of Noosa Landcare’s founding members and staff are still active volunteers or staff members today. Noosa Landcare has also been an incubator for our community. From the first team of trainees under Green Corp back in the early 1990’s, Noosa Landcare has supported many to gain employment in natural resource management locally and interstate.

We continue to grow and evolve as an organisation, business, and community group. Today Noosa Landcare has a staff base of more than 60 people, hosts more than 20 trainees per year, grows more than 300,000 native plants, and has an active membership of up to 500 people.

Partnerships continue to be fundamental to the work we do. Many partnerships are long term and highly valued, including with the Mary River Catchment Coordination Committee, Noosa Council, Sunshine Coast Council, Noosa Integrated Catchment Association, Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation, Burnett Mary Regional Group, Tourism Noosa, Healthy Land & Water and Seqwater.

Many partnerships are project focussed and vary in size and scope. Our partnerships include local, state and commonwealth governments, local and national businesses, and community organisations and charities. Our solid history and performance over time has allowed our organisation to form amazing partnerships and undertake some large and ground-breaking projects.

Community is still at our core. We provide a range of avenues for our community to participate and support the many things we do here at Noosa Landcare. From volunteering, work placement and traineeship opportunities to our many wonderful local events – we encourage everyone in our community to get involved, learn new skills, and share experiences and knowledge.