Wilderness Australia is an organisation with bold objects: the expansion, protection, and restoration of Australia’s wilderness areas and other landscapes of high environmental significance, for the purpose of sustaining the ecological processes on which all life depends.
To be successful in our efforts, we must not only work with experts, Traditional Owners and the wider Australian community, we must also chart a carefully considered pathway and attain a strong financial position, so that we may continue our advocacy in shifting political or financial climates.
With this in mind, and our new name and constitution in place, Wilderness Australia’s Board recently came together for two days of strategic planning in the beautiful rainforest setting of Ben Ricketts to prepare and plan for our future. It was the first time we had been able to meet in person since the world was hit by COVID-19 in early 2020.
Led by our Chair, Bob Debus, and supported by detailed research undertaken by our staff and contractors, we consolidated our vision, purpose, mission and approach, agreeing that:
- Our vision is that nature in Australia is healthy, safe and resilient, now and in the future.
- Our purpose is to prevent the collapse of nature by building a network of wilderness areas and resilient ecosystems across Australia.
- Our mission is to advocate for the science, policies, laws, public support and conservation activities required to establish a continental network of wilderness areas, nature reserves, and other landscapes of high environmental significance.
We have given ourselves a 50-year horizon to realise our vision and mission, and aim to become Australia’s premier nature-protection advocacy organisation by 2032.
As Australia’s premier nature-protection advocacy organisation, we will focus on activities that ‘protect terrestrial ecosystems’, biodiversity and ecological processes; engaging with general environment and climate change issues as necessitated by our mission.
Over the next 5-10 years, we will work to strengthen Wilderness Australia’s operational capability and financial position, so that we can continue our GIVE A DAM campaign and advocate for the protection of our forests, both locally and nationally.
We will also develop a 5-year plan that ensures we can achieve our vision through the creation of WildCountry, bringing together scientists, experts and traditional custodians to assist us in its development.
Our retreat was a great success thanks to the contributions of our directors Bob Debus (Chair), Kylie Cairns (Deputy Chair), Rob Pallin (Treasurer), Alix Goodwin (Secretary), Christine Milne, Ted Plummer and Virginia Young; our staff Harry Burkitt (General Manager) and Guy Threlfo (Communications); and consultants Alec Marr and Andrew Wong.
A big thanks to Rob and Nancy Pallin for their generosity in hosting the retreat at Ben Ricketts Environmental Preserve, Jamberoo.
A summary of Wilderness Australia’s Strategic Plan 2022-2026 will be published on our website in the near future.