Hello all! We are Chelsea, Kylie, Petrea, Kate, and Catherine, and are undergraduate students from the Australian National University. Our names may seem familiar, and that’s because we ran a survey for the ARRC in October 2020! Before we get into the nitty and gritty of our findings, here is some information about the five of us.

Hello! My name is Catherine, and I am a third year student studying a bachelor’s degree in environment and sustainability at the ANU! I have always loved the environment, and have followed that passion since I was little. Throughout my degree, I have developed an interest in science communication, forestry, and biodiversity conservation!
Favourite river – Whilst not a large river, I love the Tuggeranong creek! I conducted waterwatch sampling there for several months.

Hey! I’m Kylie, and I’m in my second year at ANU studying a double bachelor’s degree in Environment & sustainability and Design. I’ve always found rivers (and nature in general) very inspiring, from its stunning and ever-changing aesthetics to its ability to connect people, both physically and metaphorically! Favourite River – The Franklin River, I haven’t been there yet, but it’s on my Bucket list!

Hi! I’m Chelsea, and I’m in my final year of a double bachelor’s degree in environment and sustainability with international relations. I first became interested in the ARRC’s work because I major in natural resource management, and will be working next year in geoscience remediation. Favourite river – Parramatta River as I grew up in Western Sydney, and I loved taking the Rivercat into the city.

Hi, my name is Kate and I’m in my second year at ANU, studying a double degree in Environment and Sustainability and Development Studies. My main passion is doing anything outdoors in Australia’s alpine national parks and this has shown me the importance and beauty of clean healthy river systems. Favourite river – the Kiewa River!

Hi all! I am Petrea and am in my third year at the ANU studying a double degree in a Bachelor of Laws and Environment and Sustainability. Throughout my studies I have developed a particular interest in forests, healthy waterways and regenerative land management techniques. For as long as I can remember I have had a passion for animals and the environment! Favourite River – Johanna River in the Otways, I have many memories camping in this region.

The aim of this research project was to come up with recommendations for the ARRC for future work, and also to provide the ARRC with information about what its newsletter subscribers value the most of the Centre’s work. We created a survey last month, and received 127 responses! Thank you to everyone who responded, we are incredibly grateful for every response!

Here is what we found…

Our recommendations…

From our findings, we recommend that the ARRC:

  1. Run more online webinars and online stakeholder engagement workshops.
  2. Implement more river and riparian restoration projects in subscribers’ local areas, and to facilitate this, improve communication on where river restoration help is needed by redesigning the ARRC and RoC websites to be more user-friendly.
  3. Conduct annual surveys of the ARRC community, through surveys, interviews, and/or social media polls and posts.

Though we’ve only known and interacted with Siwan and Pat for a short amount of time, we have spent a lot of time reading through your responses and we hope these recommendations will improve your experience with the ARRC and their work in the future.

All in all, this experience has been valuable for all of us. We’re all aspiring to work in careers that have a positive impact on society and the environment, however we’re also unsure as to what those employment opportunities might look like. Working on this project with Siwan and Pat has boosted our confidence in what collaborating with environmental organisations and managing stakeholder relationships might look like, and we’ll be taking the things we’ve learned – from research design to working in groups – into our future careers. Thank you to everyone who answered this survey and made this all possible.

Left to right: Kate, Petrea, Catherine, Chelsea & Kylie.