TREAT is a community based tree planting group operating mainly on the Atherton Tableland in the Wet Tropics Region of far North Queensland. It was formed in 1982 with the principal objective of encouraging people to plant native rainforest trees.

Membership has increased to well over 500 as more and more landowners with farms or urban gardens felt the need to plant native trees for a variety of reasons – such as the rehabilitation of degraded lands, improvement of water quality, provision of windbreaks, the restoration of forest remnants, rebuilding vegetated wildlife corridors to enable wildlife to move freely or, just to enhance the landscape.

TREAT members work voluntarily throughout the year with the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service - Restoration Services - Lake Eacham Nursery, rearing trees to rebuild the framework of the tropical rainforests of the Atherton and Evelyn Tablelands. Over the past 20 years, almost a half a million native plants have been propagated and planted. Production involves seed collection and preparation, the rearing of seedlings and the care of the young trees until they are ready to be planted out.

TREAT projects have ranged from the revegetation of 7 hectares on the shores of Lake Tinaroo, to planting 70 trees in a Kindergarten school yard and helping to build a 1.2 km wildlife corridor to facilitate wildlife movement between two isolated forest remnants. A key project currently being managed by TREAT - of several years duration, is estimated to cost $1 million. Part of this is being met with grants of $450,000 provided by the Natural Heritage Trust - a Commonwealth Government initiative. The balance is met by TREAT in the form of voluntary in-kind labour. A number of smaller projects are supported with grants from various sources.

planting

TREAT volunteers not only plant trees, they design and manage complex projects, supervise and monitor implementation and provide annual progress reports to agencies providing financial support; they are also involved in a number of other related activities, such as monitoring wildlife populations, studying vegetation changes and running school awareness programmes.

Operating within priority frameworks set by Integrated Catchment Management Committees and government bodies, TREAT works with government and non-government agencies, landowners and other community groups.

TREAT is incorporated under the Queensland State Associations Incorporation Act, is registered for Goods and Services Tax purposes and has been placed on the Australian Business Register. Endorsed as an income tax exempt charitable entity, TREAT manages a public fund – the ‘TREAT Environmental Benefit Fund’.

World Heritage Wet Tropics Restoring Communities

The Wet Tropics of North Queensland is a unique part of the world and in 1988 received World Heritage listing in recognition of this. Over the recent history of the region, large areas of the forests have been cleared for settlement, farming and timber industries. This is the story of how individuals and communities work together to protect the forests, so that their unique natural values are preserved for future generations.

Wet Tropics - Restoring Communities from sarahscragg on Vimeo.

Restoring Communities
Funded by local community groups to record the history of revegetation on the Atherton Tablelands

Contact Sarah to obtain a copy of this production on DVD: Sarah Scragg

Camera, Sound, Edit: Sarah Scragg, Additional Camera: Keiran James, Maps: Cornelia Carpenter.

Funded by: TREAT, Terrain, RADF grant, School for Field Studies, Barron Catchment Care.

This production is 32minutes long and was produced in 2011.

Details of the TREAT Environmental Benefit Fund »

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