Bridging people with the Maunga
We acquired a heritage building in 2005 and resited it on Rangimarie Reserve within Pirongia Village in 2012. This was done to both serve as an environmental activity centre as well as to further add to the existing heritage precinct within the village.
The building, a double classroom block, is deeply significant to our community and well loved by it, having been the ‘face’ of Pirongia school for over 50 years.
Prior to its relocation to Pirongia School in the 1950’s, it was the original Te Mawhai school building and dates from about 1914. (Historical records are unclear). We were able to gather 250 signatures for the retaining of the building in our community for use as an environmental education centre, which indicates the strong level of support we have for this project.
We are currently upgrading the building to be able to open it to the public and plan to provide programmes, workshops and hands-on opportunities for environmental protection and developing sustainability skills. Information about recreational opportunities on Mt Pirongia will also be offered, and the centre will also be available for hire to community groups
To provide a focal point for the provision and delivery of environmental and recreational programmes and initiatives drawing from the resources present on Mt Pirongia, serving the local community and greater Waikato area.
To provide interactive and relevant environmental education opportunities, both active and passive, for all ages and cultures in order to promote shared values, understanding and commitment for the care and appreciation of our specific environmental features and sustainable practices generally.
The following values will be promoted in our environmental education endeavour:
Cross cultural delivery
Maori cultural perspective
Personal and social responsibility for protecting our environment
Interconnectedness of environment
Interdependence with other groups, eg. Schools, businesses, local and regional authorities, Environmental agencies etc
Utilisation of local resource base as much as possible
Collaborative co-operation with other Environmental education operators