Want to learn more about rocks, fungi, caring for Country, and conservation? Here’s your chance.


Based in multiple locations around Victoria, and run in partnership with local councils in early 2024, the Victorian National Parks Association is offering short courses of six to ten weeks duration for local residents to become ‘nature stewards’. Basically, they want to equip people interested in our fauna and flora with the knowledge required to become strong, well-rounded environmental advocates.


What’s a nature steward?

Environmental stewardship involves advocating for, and looking after the environment. If you’re a nature steward, you’ll be someone who doesn’t just take your own rubbish home and leave no trace, you’ll actively pick up the rubbish left by others as well.

Maybe you volunteer your time with the Australian Youth Climate Coalition (Volunteer with AYCC) or with Gippsland Intrepid Landcare. Basically, you give more than few cents about the environment and the animals that call it home.


About the Program

This program is about equipping you with the knowledge to back up your passion for the environment. You might know that it’s important to clean your boots before starting a hiking trail, but do you know why? This program will answer questions like that, connect you with other inspired locals in the area and introduce you to local volunteering opportunities.

As well as the six to ten weekly classes, there’s also the opportunity to attend up to six field excursions. Prices start from $65 for concession, and $90 for residents, up to $350 for non-residents.

You’ll receive a certificate of completion for your efforts, which will obviously take pride of place on the fridge!

What can you expect to learn?

Over the course of six to twelve weeks the following sessions have been outlined:

  1. Nature stewardship
  2. First Nations culture and place
  3. Environmental interpretation
  4. Ecosystems
  5. Geology and soils
  6. Plant life
  7. Animal life
  8. Water and water life
  9. Seasons, climate change, and fire ecology
  10. Program reflections and next steps


Who can apply?

While people from anywhere in Victoria can apply to be part of each cohort, preference will be given to residents of each council area first.

The courses are aimed at people over the age of 18 with little to no formal environmental training.

Hell yes! Where do I sign?

Visit the links below to submit an application to participate in the program closest to you.

Can’t wait until 2024? The Victorian National Parks Association runs activities year-round. Visit their events calendar for opportunities to assist with spotlight surveys, the annual Victorian fish count, or join their bushwalking program.