Koala carers need your help

In the 2010/11 year the Friends of the Koala Care Centre took in 306 koalas, and with increasing development placing more strain on the native animals, the urgency for new volunteers is greater than ever.

Friends of the Koala will be conducting a course of basic training on Saturday, February 11, covering rescue techniques, assessment and handling, transportation, koala leaf collection, tree identification and more.

"We have an ongoing need to train koala rescuers, carers, advocates, and educators," Friends of the Koala president Lorraine Vass said. "Directly or indirectly, each and every one of us can do something to assist the survival of our precious koalas. Friends of the Koala is the perfect organisational framework for those people who want to help but are not sure how they can contribute."

Care co-ordinator Pat Barnidge said people who would like to get up close and personal with koalas can do so in whatever spare time they can give.

"The Koala Care Centre we operate in Lismore provides an opportunity for people wanting to work directly with koalas to do so on a rostered, team basis," she said. "Caring does not have to be a 24-hour commitment and there is a wide range of other activities in which volunteers can become involved."

Bookings for the training are essential. Phone 6622 1233, email info@friendsof thekoala.org or visit www.friendsofthekoala. org.

Meanwhile, the draft Koala Plan of Management is on public exhibition and submissions are welcome until February 3. It's available at Lismore City Council offices or on their website.

Care Centre volunteer Craig Handy feeding Rosalie but feisty back-young Alika can't wait.


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