Wollongong Environment Network | 'Environment Matters' Blog

Students Gather for the Planet!

Posted 3 April 2024 by Catholic Education

Recently 120 Catholic primary school students gathered at St Paul's Catholic Primary School, Albion Park, for a day focused on eco formation, inspiration, and action. Part of CEDoW's Wollongong Environment Network (WEN) program, the event aims to educate students about environmental stewardship and empower them to lead local action in their schools - and to learn how to work on their "own little bit of the puzzle" to help the environment.

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Love Bees, Love Honey

Posted 2 April 2024 by Catholic Education

At Ss Peter and Paul Kiama the school Bees have been incredibly busy and have made an amazing amount of honey - 8 frames that weigh about 1-2kg!!

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Cleaning Up

Posted 5 March 2024 by Catholic Education

Once again many of our schools have joined in the national campaign Clean Up Australia. Over thirty years ago, Ian Kiernan, AO, an "average Australian", had a simple idea to make a difference in his own backyard. The day has now become the nation's largest community-based environmental event, held every year in March. Over the years more than 21 million Aussies have participated in Clean Up Australia activities and events with our schools being regular participators.

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The Bees Have Landed at Holy Spirit

Posted 19 February 2024 by Catholic Education

The Garden at Holy Spirit College Bellambi was literally buzzing with excitement recently as the school's Environmental Group heralded the arrival of some very special guests.

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Winners are Grinners

Posted 15 December 2023 by Catholic Education

The smiles were wide at St Anthony's Picton when the school was awarded First Prize for Best School Garden in 2023 by Wollondilly Shire Council in their Spring garden competition. The school received $300 prize money which has gone to the purchase of garden supplies. Congratulations to the staff and students and especially the WEN Contact, Nicole Newton who oversees the gardens at the school. The gardens are one aspect of a myriad of environmental actions that the school is engaged in. Well done St Anthony's!

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CEDoW Schools Celebrate and Pray for Creation

Posted 6 September 2023 by Catholic Education

Since Pope Francis established 1 September as the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, our schools across the diocese have taken up the opportunity to join the global Christian community to pray for our common home. This begins the month long celebration of the Season of Creation.The theme for 2023 is “Let Justice and Peace Flow”, inspired by the words of the prophet Amos: “Let justice flow on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream.” (Amos 5:24)

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Budding "masterchefs" and gardeners at Milton!

Posted 12 July 2023 by Catholic Education

The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program has arrived and is well and truly underway at St Mary's Star of the Sea, Milton enabling students to learn more about where their food comes from and how to prepare yummy healthy meals.

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Listening to the Cries of the Poor

Posted 26 June 2023 by Catholic Education

In Laudato Si' we are challenged to listen to the cries of the earth and the cries of the poor and recently listening ears were indeed wide open at Ss Peter and Paul Kiama when 33 Year 5 and 6 students participated in the VINNIES WINTER SLEEPOUT as part of their continuing journey of mission.

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WEN Gathering During Laudato Si' Week

Posted 29 May 2023 by Catholic Education

The Laudato Si' Week theme, Hope for the Earth, Hope for Humanity was the focus for prayer when the WEN Teacher Contact group gathered for their annual professional learning day. This day is always a wonderful opportunity for WEN teachers to network, collaborate and share information and ideas in the ecological space. The Wollongong Environment Network is an initiative that aims to support school communities to respond to Laudato Si’ and implement environmental stewardship and sustainability.

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World Bee Day - The Bees Knees 2023

Posted 23 May 2023 by Catholic Education

When the community at Ss Peter and Paul found that a swarm of bees had taken up residence on a seat in their school playground a couple of years ago they made an ecological choice to contact a local apiarist, Laura. Laura just happened to be a parent at the school and was able to relocate the swarm to a better location and since then the school has been the beneficiaries of yummy local honey collected from their own school hive.

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Students Gather for Ecological Day

Posted 27 March 2023 by Catholic Education

With the rallying call, "You're never too small to make a difference", Primary students from across the diocese gathered recently at OLHC School Rosemeadow for a day exploring ecological issues and challenges, sharing ideas for environmental action and being commissioned as Eco Ambassadors for their schools.

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Schools Clean Up for Australia!

Posted 10 March 2023 by Catholic Education

Since the first official Clean Up Australia Day on 21 January 1990, communities all over Australia have gotten involved each year and taken positive, practical action to clean up the environment. This year, once again many of our CEDoW schools have embraced the opportunity to join in and clean up their "own backyard".

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Five Years of Support for Eco Projects

Posted 24 January 2023 by Catholic Education

2022 marked the fifth year of CEDoW's Environmental Education Grants program, a significant support to the ecological conversion journey of our diocesan schools.

These grants have been offered to schools since 2018 and have enabled schools to engage in inspiring, practical and affirming ecological projects that have contributed positively to our world. Each year schools are invited to apply for a grant of $2,000 for an ecological project that is connected to an action from their School Environment Management Plan (SEMP). 

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Actioning Laudato Si' at St John's Nowra

Posted 8 December 2022 by Catholic Education

The staff at St John the Evangelist Nowra continues to walk the path of ecological conversion and recently engaged in a professional learning experience run by the JAG (Johnnie's Action Group).

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Schools Engage in Ecological Formation Opportunities

Posted 9 November 2022 by Catholic Education

Since the release of Laudato Si' in 2015 schools across the diocese have been on a journey of ecological conversion which has involved not only environmental action but also theological and spiritual formation that encourages an exploration of our call to care for our world. In 2022 seven schools engaged in the formation day, Praise Be! Living Our Ecological Conversion.

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Listening to the Voice of Creation

Posted 8 September 2022 by Catholic Education

The Season of Creation began on September 1st and the theme and invitation of this year’s season is Listen to the Voice of Creation. Schools across our diocese have taken up the opportunity to listen to, pray for and act for creation.

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Planting Trees for the Bees at Corpus Christi

Posted 17 August 2022 by Catholic Education

Corpus Christi students under the guidance of the WEN Teacher Contact, Mr Justin Gallinar have planted some beautiful natives in preparation for the beehive which is planned for the end of Term 3. The school was lucky enough to secure donations of 160 tube stock from Jamberoo Native Nursery and a selection of 'bush tucker' natives from Bunnings Shellharbour, with the intent of adding to the existing gardens and providing additional sources of pollen and nectar for when the bees arrive later this year. Over the course of a week, a range of classes spent time in the school gardens planting away as part of the school's National Tree Day celebrations.

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St Columbkille's Environmental Stations of the Cross

Posted 15 June 2022 by Catholic Education

The St Columbkille's Corrimal School grounds have taken on a facelift in the form of beautiful images and ecological quotes to inspire prayer and reflection on caring for creation.

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Schools Celebrate World Environment Day

Posted 9 June 2022 by Catholic Education

Following hot on the heels of the celebrations for Laudato Si' Week our schools celebrated World Environment Day through prayer and action, exploring the theme ONLY ONE EARTH.

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Corpus Christi Goes Global

Posted 2 June 2022 by Catholic Education

The Laudato Si' Movement is an international coalition of Catholics from many nations, continents, and walks of life and just recently featured the School community of Corpus Christi Oak Flats as part of Laudato Si' Week celebrations.

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CEDoW Schools Celebrate Laudato Si' Week 2022

Posted 23 May 2022 by Catholic Education

Schools across the Wollongong Diocese have marked the seventh anniversary of Pope Francis' environmental encyclical Laudato Si' by joining with the Australian Church in celebrating Laudato Si' Week.

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WEN Teacher Contact PD Day

Posted 14 March 2022 by Catholic Education

Despite floods and the chaos of road closures it was wonderful to have the WEN Teacher Contact group still able to gather together face-to-face for their annual professional development day. This day is always a valued opportunity for formation and collaboration, sharing ideas and experiences in the ecological space for the WEN group of teachers.

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A Home for the Birds at St Michael's Nowra

Posted 18 February 2022 by Catholic Education

St. Michael's Nowra had a visit from the Nowra Men's Shed who built a Nesting Box for the school grounds with the hope of attracting endangered Powerful Owls or Black Cockatoos into the school. The nesting box will be located in the Black Cockatoo Garden with the Year 6 Aboriginal student leaders being involved in the project.

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Combating Mask Waste at Holy Spirit College

Posted 11 February 2022 by Catholic Education

With the pandemic we continue to witness the generation of an enormous amount of waste that goes to landfill or collects in waterways and bushland. One culprit is the disposable mask.

Like many of our CEDoW schools, the staff and students at Holy Spirit College Bellambi continue to seek ways of lessening their environmental footprint and are utilising TerraCycle to collect and recycle some of the masks used across the school community.

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Gardening Club farewells its Year 6 Leaders

Posted 13 December 2021 by Catholic Education

At Holy Cross Helensburgh there were fond farewells given to four Year 6 Gardening Club Leaders - Kai, Claire, Charlotte and Angus, who were thanked and farewelled with a celebratory ceremony that reflected on their Gardening Club journey.Each student was presented with a certificate, their gardening gloves and clip, and also a Bush Tucker plant. After the presentation, they celebrated together, recounting their most memorable moments (with lots of laughter) - and there were a lot of them!Gardening Club has enjoyed watching these four young students develop their love for the environment and leadership capabilities and the school community wish them all the very best for what lies ahead.Congratulations Kai, Claire, Charlotte and Angus!

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National Recycling Week at Edmondson Park

Posted 9 November 2021 by Catholic Education

National Recycling Week, established by Planet Ark in 1996, is held every year during the second week of November (8th to 14th of November 2021). This year is the celebration of its 25th anniversary with the theme of:

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Students Speak 4 the Planet

Posted 13 October 2021 by Catholic Education

At St Francis Catholic College Edmondson Park, students have engaged in the Speaking 4 the Planet Competition. Speaking 4 the Planet is an Arts-based approach to sustainability that invites students to participate in an annual online competition in the categories of public speaking, visual arts, drama, writing, video or memes/cartoons. In 2021, the theme was “Rewind the clock – reverse ecosystem degradation.”

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Season of Creation and the Laudato Si' Action Platform

Posted 11 October 2021 by Catholic Education

Once again, CEDoW schools seized the opportunity offered by the Season of Creation to further engage in environmental activities and positive actions for the planet.

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Praying and Caring for Creation

Posted 2 September 2021 by Catholic Education

With the arrival of Spring, school communities across the Wollongong Diocese have joined in with the global family to celebrate the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation marking the beginning of the annual Season of Creation which runs from 1st September and concludes on 4th October.

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War On Waste at Bowral!

Posted 23 July 2021 by Catholic Education

There's been a war on waste happening at St Thomas Aquinas Bowral. Since Week 5 in Term 2 the school community has been recycling all of their rubbish, both after morning tea and lunch time as well as in the classroom during wet weather.

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No time to WASTE!

Posted 29 June 2021 by Catholic Education

Waste and not wasting time were key themes explored by students at the recent Secondary Sustainability Conference hosted by Edmund Rice College at Mt Keira.

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Wonderful Waste Recycling at St Anthony's Picton!

Posted 24 June 2021 by Catholic Education

There's lots of wonderful things happening in the environmental space at St Anthony's Catholic Primary School at Picton.

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Baking with Baba at Port Kembla

Posted 17 June 2021 by Catholic Education

The students at St Patrick's Port Kembla recently spent an amazing day working in their permaculture garden, The Living Classroom. Each year, the girls and boys in Year 4 are ‘garden ambassadors’, where they work together in the garden, learning about permaculture principles, building soil, planting trees, growing amazing produce and having fun in the sun – and occasionally the rain!

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CEDoW Schools Reimagine, Recreate and Restore on World Environment Day

Posted 9 June 2021 by Catholic Education

The annual celebration of World Environment Day on 5th June is always an opportunity for the world to collectively pause and reflect on how we can all better care for our planet. As usual, schools across the Wollongong diocese joined in and celebrated this day with prayer and action, challenged to make a difference for the planet through this year's theme of "Reimagine. Recreate. Restore."

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Teachers Gather to Care for Our Common Home, Our Schools

Posted 2 June 2021 by Catholic Education

WEN Teacher Contacts from across our diocesan schools recently gathered for their annual Professional Development and Formation Day, Caring for Our Common Home, Our School. Held at the conclusion of Laudato Si' Week, the day proved to be a wonderful opportunity for professional learning, professional dialogue and sharing of best practice in the areas of ecological conversion, environmental education and action.

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Christ's Hands On Earth at Mt Carmel

Posted 14 May 2021 by Catholic Education

We are often reminded of the phrase, act local, think global. At Mt Carmel Catholic College Varroville this phrase is being put into action in a Christ-centred way that fosters a sense of community and nurtures a culture of service through initiatives that promote stewardship and care for our Common Home.

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New Eco Ambassadors for CEDoW Primary Schools

Posted 18 April 2021 by Catholic Education

Embracing the idea, 'You are never too small to make a difference', over 100 students representing Catholic primary schools from across the Diocese of Wollongong attended the inaugural Primary Student WEN Day which was held at St Paul’s Catholic Parish Primary School in Albion Park. 

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CEDoW Schools Step Up To Clean Up!

Posted 15 March 2021 by Catholic Education

For this year's Clean Up Australia Day many of our schools took on board the challenge of "Step Up To Clean Up" and participated in a number of Clean Up events, joining thousands of people across Australia in caring for their local environment.

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Eco Conversations with Japanese Friends

Posted 5 March 2021 by Catholic Education

Year 6 students from St Columbkille’s Catholic Primary School Corrimal recently engaged in a Zoom conference with university students living in Japan. These students are currently involved in a program called ‘Project Unite’ which is based around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

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St Thomas More's "Wickedly" Good Garden

Posted 25 February 2021 by Catholic Education

In 2019 St Thomas More Ruse applied for a $2,000 CEDoW Environmental Education Grant to establish a self-watering wicking garden, the fruits of which are now being realised.

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A New Year of Caring for Our World!

Posted 15 February 2021

The school community at St Pius X Unanderra has signalled that during 2021 they will continue to "care for our common home" through positive ecological actions.

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Cooling Off at Mary Immaculate Eagle Vale!

Posted 16 December 2020 by Catholic Education

The students at Mary Immaculate Catholic Primary School at Eagle Vale are working with hundreds of other students from other schools to add thousands of plants to community spaces and schools across Greater Sydney.

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Schools Utilise Grant Money for Ecological Projects in 2020.

Posted 16 December 2020 by Catholic Education

With the release of Laudato Si' in 2015, CEDoW's system of schools has been on a path of encouraging strategic planning and implementation of sustainable practices, ecological action and formation for our schools.

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Springing Into The Garden at Bowral

Posted 8 December 2020 by Catholic Education

At the end of Term 3 in 2020 the whole community of St Thomas Aquinas School Bowral spontaneously and simultaneously responded to the feel of warm air, the buzzing of bees and the budding of bright green leaves by preparing garden beds and raising seedlings in readiness for a massive planting around the school.

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Growing Hope at Milton

Posted 23 November 2020 by Catholic Education

St Mary's Star of the Sea Milton students have been "happy and honoured" to take part in the Convoy of Hope's Regrow' program – helping those who lost everything in last summer's devastating bushfires.

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Beacon of Sustainability

Posted 9 November 2020 by Catholic Education

St Patricks Primary School’s Living Classroom is a beacon of sustainability in the Catholic schools of New South Wales. This verdant cornucopia is a thriving food garden and inspiring learning oasis.

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Sport House Spirit Drives Container Collection for Vinnies Return and Earn

Posted 20 October 2020 by Catholic Education

St Brigid’s Catholic Parish Primary School in Gwynneville held two drives during Term Three where more than 5,700 recyclable drink containers were collected and deposited to the Vinnies Return and Earn depot in Unanderra.

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Schools Celebrate and Pray for Creation

Posted 11 September 2020 by Catholic Education

CEDoW schools have marked the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation and the Season of Creation with prayer, liturgy and actions that demonstrate a strong commitment to raising awareness and caring for our common home.

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World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation

Posted 28 August 2020

One of the ways that our school communities can participate in ecological conversion each year is on 1st September which is The World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. This day marks the beginning of the Season of Creation, which is an annual event that encourages prayer and action for our common home and it runs from 1st September through to 4th October, the Feast Day of St Francis of Assisi.

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Holy Cross Helensburgh Gardening Club Meets Masterchef!

Posted 10 August 2020 by Catholic Education

The Leaders of the Gardening Club at Holy Cross Helensburgh are also budding Masterchefs recently demonstrating that they have culinary skills as well as green thumbs.

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