Environment Centre Events & Projects

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Workshop Program

Workshops are run regularly at the Community Environment Centre, usually on a Thursday or Saturday.

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Workshops May-July 2024

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Growing Food for Wildlife



Join us as we help to grow food for sick, injured and orphaned native animals in the care of local wildlife rescue groups.

These working bees are a great opportunity to learn about native gardening, local plant species, local wildlife, and to have a laugh and connect with locals and wildlife carers in your area!

We are working together to help feed rescued wildlife and establish planting plots to grow food for rescued wildlife in care. The Growing Food for Wildlife project at Annangrove is a local wildlife rescue group and The Hills Shire Council Community Environment Centre initiative.

Wildlife rescue volunteers can collect foliage and buds, shoots, and flowers from our existing native plant garden to feed wildlife in care such as possums and gliders, some of which eat up to 1kg of greens a day!

A typical working bee may involve weeding invasive species and maintenance of planting plots, planting new native species, harvesting native foliage for animals in care, wildlife talks and a social BBQ at the end of the event (BYO food) to connect, socialise and share a meal together.

If you would like to help in this project, please feel free to come along to one of our working bees (currently the second Saturday of the month 10am - 1pm) to be part of making a difference for rescued wildlife and wildlife carers, and meet local wildlife and environment volunteers in your community.

Join us and be a wildlife grower in your community.

Join the Working Bees

Working Bees Flyer (Aug-Dec 2023)(PDF, 3MB)


Past Events & Achievements

Highlighted Media Releases

Council's Community Environment Centre is now open on Saturdays!

Published on 22 August 2022

Mayor of The Hills Shire, Dr Peter Gangemi has declared the Community Environment Centre, in Annangrove, officially “open” on Saturdays during a special Open Day on the 13th August.

This will be in addition to the existing Thursday operating hours of 9am - 4pm, with the community now being able to visit every Saturday from 9am - 4pm. 

“The Community Environment Centre is an integral part of the environmental work of the Council," Mayor Gangemi said. 

“Being open on a Saturday provides residents with even more opportunities to come down, visit the all-year gardens and also become Centre volunteers,” he added.

The Open Day event was one for the books with over 200 people in attendance and 20 stallholders present on the day, ranging from gardening and wildlife groups, environmental networks, and community art groups, to the local RFS. 

Activities ranged from petting and photo opportunities with wildlife, tours of the Centre and its gardens, information talks with the Centre’s volunteers on a diverse range of environmental topics, story-time for kids hosted by Council’s Library Caddy, and dancing to live music provided by the Bush Band.

“The open day was a tremendous way for the community to connect and celebrate the Environment Centre’s role in deepening our appreciation and respect for our natural environment,” Mayor Gangemi said.

“I would like to thank everyone involved, and also encourage residents, if they have some spare time on a Thursday or Saturday, to volunteer at the Centre," he added. 

Centre volunteers perform a variety of roles, including maintaining the gardens, assisting with environmental workshops and much more.


Volunteers help grow food for sick, injured and orphaned wildlife

Published on 13 January 2023

A group of dedicated and hardworking volunteers are growing food for sick, injured and orphaned native animals in the care of local wildlife rescue groups – and they are asking for more helping hands to join them at the Growing Food for Wildlife project.

The project is held on the second Saturday of the month at The Hills Shire Council’s Community Environment Centre, located at Currie Avenue, in Annangrove. 

Volunteers tend to the native garden plots which provides the much-needed food for native Australian animals – some of which are on the endangered species list and are at risk of disappearing forever.

Currently, volunteers are growing a variety of native shrubs and flowers, such as Lilly Pilly and different Grevillea species. They also collect buds, foliage and shoots.

Mayor of The Hills Shire, Dr Peter Gangemi described the project as being “so rewarding”.

“It’s a great way to give back, meet like-minded people and learn more about our local environment and plant species, and of course – help our local native wildlife,” Mayor Gangemi said.

“I thank our volunteers, including those at our Environment Centre, and everyone who has participated in the Growing Food for Wildlife project. I also want to thank our wildlife rescue groups, including our local WIRES North Shore and North West branches and Sydney Wildlife Rescue, for everything that they do to care and support our native wildlife.

“I encourage more people to get involved in this volunteer program. It’s just a few hours out of your day and you will feel absolutely amazing knowing that your efforts are helping our native animals to survive and thrive,” Mayor Gangemi added.

The project started in August after Shaun Warden, a branch executive at WIRES North Shore branch, contacted Council to source land to grow native plants to support animals in care.

Council already has a native garden at its Community Environment Centre and believed this would be the best place to run the project and engage its already strong and local volunteer base.

Mr Warden said the project had been so beneficial for wildlife rescuers and carers, who participate on a volunteer basis.

“Our sugar glider, possum and nectivorous bird rehabilitators must browse the streets daily looking for food to feed the wildlife that they have in care. This also includes doorknocking and reaching out for permission to harvest edible foliage and flowers from hedges and street trees. This can be very time consuming and sometimes stressful,” Mr Warden said.  

“Having these resources in the one place for the wildlife rehabilitation community will save us time and prevent compassion burnout,” Mr Warden added.

The next working bee is happening this Saturday 14th January, from 10am to 1pm.

A typical day includes weeding invasive species from planting plots, planting new native species and mulching and harvesting native foliage from the existing native gardens for animals in care. After all the hard work, volunteers can then enjoy a social afternoon together, with some bringing their own food and cooking on the facilities provided.

For further details and to apply to the Growing Food for Wildlife project, visit Council’s website, www.thehills.nsw.gov.au and search ‘Growing Food for Wildlife Working Bee’.

View More Media Releases


Past Workshop Information & Resources

Growing Your Own Food Workshop(PDF, 3MB)

Organic Gardening Workshop(PDF, 5MB)

Self Water Garden Beds - CEC Workshop(PDF, 4MB)

Habitat Stepping Stones Presentation(PPTX, 28MB)

Compost Information Booklet(PDF, 20MB)

Moon Planting Booklet(PDF, 20MB)


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