Celebrating 25 years of youth-based conservation

News story
Survival and environmental skills at the forefront of Bush Rangers WA program.
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Bush Rangers students walking on a wooden platform along a sandy beach as the sun starts to set.

For students like Twyla, the Bush Rangers WA program provides the unique opportunity to travel around Western Australia while actively contributing to environmental conservation.

“I heard about the opportunity within the program to learn about and explore WA,” Twyla said.

“I also heard a lot of positive feedback from prior cadets about the experiences the program provided and thought that it would be a waste to miss the fantastic opportunity.”

Twyla is one of over 100 cadets at the Mount Lawley Senior High School’s Bush Ranger cadet unit which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary. 

Bush Ranger units are supported by Cadets WA, through Department of Communities, and are located throughout Western Australia in a range of educational settings including metropolitan, regional and remote schools, Education Support Units and Indigenous Community Schools across the Independent, Catholic and State education sectors.

The Bush Rangers WA cadet program is coordinated by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, and is the largest program stream within the Cadets WA programs.

Some of the conservation projects undertaken include helping rangers in the Shark Bay peninsula with activities such as weeding and fencing, harvesting termites for the numbats at Perth Zoo, and planting wildlife corridors for the Carnaby's black cockatoo.

The Mount Lawley Bush Rangers unit is led by School Chaplain Andrew Paul, who first set up the program and has seen sustained interest for more than 25 years. His tireless efforts have transformed a modest group of participants into a thriving unit of over 100 young people engaging in weekly activities and camps throughout the year.

“The support I’ve received from the Department of Communities has been outstanding and enables people like me to go out and support young people,” Andrew said.

More than 9,500 young people participate in over 180 cadet units throughout the State and involve around 1,100 volunteer unit leaders and instructors.

Communities funds a variety of Cadets WA programs including Emergency Services Cadets Corps, Bush Rangers, Police Rangers, River Rangers, Surf Life Saving Cadets, as well as the Navy, Army, and Air Force Cadets.

To participate in Cadets WA or to find out more, visit the Cadets WA page.