$25,000 boost for koalas

Koala in Noosa National Park

The Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation has received a $25k donation from Queensland Koala Crusaders to kickstart new koala conservation initiatives in the Noosa Biosphere Reserve.

The donation was announced at November’s Noosa Biosphere Wild Koala Gala to match monies raised. In total the Gala raised more than $50,000.

Newly appointed Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation (NBRF) Chair, Rowan Rafferty said the generous donation would be used to seed-fund a new Noosa Wild Koala Initiative and Fund.

“The Noosa Wild Koala Initiative has been created by the NBRF to facilitate a coordinated approach for koala conservation and education in the Noosa Biosphere Reserve.

“It is our endeavour to develop alongside stakeholders, meaningful action towards the future survival of Noosa’s wild koala,” said Mr Rafferty.

Queensland Koala Crusaders (QKC) Ambassador, Meghan Halverson said the Noosa Wild Koala Initiative is an important step in working towards a better future for our local koala population.

“QKC has been working to do what is best for koalas by collaborating with others and providing input as stakeholders in koala conservation. By supporting the Noosa Wild Koala Initiative, we can participate in creating a scope and vision for a progressive and innovative project to serve generations of koalas and humans into the future,” said Ms Halverson.

Koala populations across South East Queensland have declined more than 80 percent over the past 10 years.

The NBRF has supported koala research for the past six years and facilitated its first Koala Symposium in 2019, bringing together leading researchers with government, conservation and care groups to discuss local issues and opportunities.

It has now formed a stakeholder working group for the Noosa Wild Koala Initiative which met for the first time this month.

“This is where the NBRF can play a key role. We’ve experienced that bringing together key stakeholders and community representatives from different viewpoints is an important process to developing meaningful solutions to living positively within a biosphere reserve,” said Mr Rafferty.

“Koala conservation is complicated,” said Ms Halverson. “It will take the combined efforts of government, community, organisations, researchers and koala care groups to provide the funding and expertise to create a robust and successful plan,” she said.

“We want to see the Noosa Biosphere Reserve be a safe haven for wild koalas,” said Mr Rafferty.

“Ongoing research, education and engagement is crucial to deepening our understanding and improving how we co-exist.”

To donate to the fund or to learn more, visit www.noosabiosphere.org.au/koala.