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Council-first interactive program revealed for Sustainable Ipswich Month

Climate change resilient plants, plastic-free homes, smart water usage, pre-loved fashion, secrets to composting and student-led environment innovations will be the talk of the city when Sustainable Ipswich Month activates community spaces and gardens next month.

Spanning 3 to 30 November with more than a dozen free and low-cost events, Mayor Teresa Harding said the all-ages program explores simple, everyday ways residents can live more sustainably.

“It is our most interactive program to date about sustainability, exploring a range of topics that can help everyone create a greener and healthier home and community,” Mayor Harding said.

“The workshops are designed as hands-on opportunities to learn about topics such as how to reduce waste in your home, how to make your own liquid fertiliser and how you can protect the environment through recycling and swapping out what’s in your wardrobe.”

Environment and Sustainability Chair Councillor Russell Milligan said the program will see local unsung enviro-heroes present and teach their own sustainability tips and tricks to those in the community wanting to take positive environmental action.

“Sustainable Ipswich Month is a way for our community to learn from each other as we progress towards a greener future,” Cr Milligan said.

“The variety of activities give residents many ways to kick-start their journey or be inspired by new and innovative ideas to reduce waste, reuse materials and help the environment.

“This month of sustainable events and workshops is one of the ways we can learn simple and easy ways to make change and promote sustainable living in everyday life, all year round.”

Kicking off the program will be the Youth Sustainability Summit for almost 200 students in Grades 4 and 5 from 15 Ipswich schools.

The forum is an opportunity for students to share sustainability projects they are currently working on and learn about protecting local wildlife, building biodiversity in their school and backyard, recycling and composting, and learning about what plants grow best in our climate.

Gardening guru Kate Wall will teach you how to make your own liquid fertiliser in ‘Healthy Soils’.

Green thumbs will be itching to get their hands dirty after learning the secrets to great soil and composting at Healthy Soils with Kate Wall and the first-ever Sustainable Open Garden Tour of Ian Muil’s suburban garden oasis in Silkstone.

Avid gardeners can also learn about how climate change is affecting gardens and how to select plants for a successful home plot from one of Australia’s best-known horticulturists in Learning for Life with Paul Plant presented by Ipswich Libraries.

Savour Soil Permaculture will share ingenious ways to use water at home in Getting Smart about Water, and ongoing Mobile Nursery events across the city offer free plants that specifically suit the local climate and soil conditions – proudly propagated and grown in council’s production nursery.

Fashionistas can revive and refresh their wardrobes after being inspired by styling queen Emma Willmann at Clothing Swap with Statement Styling, as well as grab a bargain or three at the Garage Sale Trail spanning over two big weekends.

Those late to spring cleaning can learn how reduce plastic in everyday life and top tips for living a life with less with sustainability writer Nicole Lutze and local resident Sandra Preston-Hatcher at Plastic Free at Home.

The program also includes kids bicycle workshops to help build confidence and remove their training wheels, plus a free online bike maintenance webinar for adults hosted by Bicycle Queensland.

The Ipswich community are also encouraged to share their own sustainability tips using #sustainableipswich.

For more information and to register for Sustainable Ipswich Month events, visit Ipswich.qld.gov.au/sustainability

Program Overview 

Youth Sustainability Summit – Ipswich Civic Centre 
Wednesday 3 November 

The full-day forum will educate 175 students in Grades 4 and 5 from 15 Ipswich schools on a range of sustainability initiatives. Leaders from Springfield Central State School and Goodna State School will head the summit, and students will hear from young community leaders Darcy Witherspoon (Down2Earth), Jessica Lindsay (Mallow Sustainability), Tamielle Brunt and Matt Cecil from Wilderness Preservation Society Queensland and Solar Schools.

Plastic Free at Home – Queens Park Environment Education Centre 
Saturday 6 November 

Take a seat with presenters Nicole Lutze (sustainability blogger), and Ipswich resident Sandra Preston-Hatcher and hear their first-hand experience and best tips for living a life with less. This fun and interactive workshop is for anyone keen to learn simple and out of the box ways to reduce plastic in everyday life.
Cost: Free

Learning for Life with Paul Plant – Springfield Central Library 
Saturday 6 November 

Join Paul Plant, well-known horticulturalist and radio presenter, for a presentation that will highlight the impact of climate change on gardens, crops and wildlife, and how home gardeners can plan and select pants for a successful future garden.
Cost: Free – Secure your place here.

Clothing Swap – Event Space #3, 1 Nicholas Street, Ipswich City Council Building 
Thursday 11 November 

Be part of the circular economy and exchange your unwanted (but great condition) clothing for ones they will use and love. As you ‘shop’, presenter Emma Willmann of Statement Styling and Ipswich artist Rebecca Lewis of Little Brown Dog will share their tips on saving the environment through fashion and offer styling advise on looking great for less. A clothing swap is a fantastic way to refresh your wardrobe and keep clothes ‘in the loop’ as opposed to op-shops or ultimately landfill.
Cost: $10 – and don’t forget to bring at least five clothes to swap! Secure your place here.

Getting Smart about Water – Redbank Plains Community Centre 
Saturday 13 November 

Ipswich is known for its low annual rainfall and hot summers. We use water for everything, from drinking and essential maintenance to the use on our gardens. Join Michael and Victoria from Savour Soil Permaculture as they share how to be smarter about how we use water at home. This session will show you how you can do more with less and be strategic with this amazing resource.
Cost: Free – Secure your place here.

Active Kids, Removing Training Wheels – Grande Park Springfield Lakes 
Saturday 13 November 

This bike riding course is designed for children who are progressing towards removing their training wheels. Children will be taught basic riding skills, increase awareness of surroundings and build their confidence to remove their training wheels.
Cost: Free – each participant will need to bring their own bike and helmet. Registrations are essential and places are limited.
Session 1: 9am – 10am, secure your place here.
Session 2: 10am – 11am, secure your place here.

Garage Sale Trail – various locations around Ipswich
13 to 14 November and 20 to 21 November

Reusing old stuff is not only a way to make some extra cash, but also a way to help reduce waste that ends up in landfill. This year will see two big weekends of garage sales held simultaneously around the nation, with more bargains and more planet-saving fun than ever before! Follow this link to learn how to host a sale and find locations in Ipswich.

Healthy Soils with Kate Wall – Queens Park Environmental Education Centre
Saturday 20 November 

The secrets to great gardening start in the soil. Learn tried and tested ways to create great soil in your garden with gardening writer and consultant Kate Wall. These workshops will explore a variety of soil improvement methods and ways to make home composting simple, adding valuable matter to your soil and keeping waste from landfill. You will also learn how to make your own liquid fertilisers from natural organic matter.
Cost: Free
Session 1: 10am – 12pm, secure your place here.
Session 2: 2pm – 4pm, secure your place here.

Jamie’s Ministry of Food ‘Sustainability and Food’ Cooking Classes – d’Arcy Doyle Place
Tuesday 23 November

One of the easiest ways you can make a positive impact on sustainability is by reducing food wastage at home. These cooking classes will teach you how to make a simple but versatile tomato sauce using fresh ingredients, where nothing goes to waste. You will also be taught Jamie Oliver’s tips and tricks on how to reduce your food waste by shopping smarter, seasonally and locally.
Cost: $8
Session 1: 10am – 11am, secure your place here.
Session 2: 12pm – 1pm, secure your place here.

Ian Muil has transformed his front and backyard into a productive haven for plants, animals and insects.

Sustainable Open Garden Tour – suburban garden in Silkstone
Saturday 27 November 

For one day only, Ipswich gardener Ian Muil will open his suburban garden to the public and share his passion and knowledge for gardening. Hear from Ian and his landscape designer, Jonathan Gregory, about how they went about transforming Ian’s front and backyard into a productive haven for plants, animals and insects. This event is delivered by the Habitat Gardens program with Ipswich City Council.
Cost: Free – Secure your place here.

Mobile Nursery at locations across Ipswich 

Ipswich residents can visit a Mobile Plant nursery to collect up to six free plants. Plant species are chosen to suit local climate and soil conditions and are proudly propagated and grown in Ipswich City Council’s production nursery.
Cost: Free – You will need to present either your rates notice or a driver’s licence before you can collect your free plants. Follow this link for more information.
6 November – 8 to 11am, Winston Glades Shopping Centre Car Park, Flinders View
20 November – 8 to 11am, Yamanto Shopping Centre Car Park, Yamanto
27 November – 8 to 11am, Riverview Community Centre, Riverview

Learn to maintain your bike – Online Workshop
Tuesday 30 November

Join Bicycle Queensland for an online beginner bike maintenance workshop that covers a range of helpful tips such as the ‘ABC bike safety check’, drive train care, route planning and repairing a flat tyre.
Cost: Free – Secure your place here.

Sustainable Ipswich Month is delivered through the support of the following partners:
Ipswich Libraries, Council’s Habitat Gardens Program, Ipswich Waste Services, Ipswich Nurseries, Council’s Active Kids Program, and Garage Sale Trail.

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