About the Conference

Landcare Australia, together with the 2021 National Landcare Conference Steering Committee, are proud to host the 2021 National Landcare Conference from Thursday 5 to Friday 6 August as online event. MC Costs will be speaking from the International Convention Centre at Darling Harbour in Sydney. This event has been made possible due to the support of the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

The 2021 National Landcare Conference Steering Committee members are made up of representatives of the Australian Government, the National Landcare Network, Landcare NSW, Local Land Services and Landcare Australia. The Committee have been involved in providing advice to Landcare Australia in the development of the 2021 National Landcare Conference program.

With Landcare champion Costa Georgiadis as the MC, the 2021 National Landcare Conference promises to be an inclusive and inspiring event for anyone who cares about conservation activities, sustainable land management practices and community wellbeing. The Conference will include speakers on bushfire recovery and community resilience, Landcare farming, wellbeing and mental health, and cultural land management. The session streams include Environment and Climate Change, Sustainable Farming, Landcare Impact and Community Partnerships in Action.

Due to COVID-19, the 2021 National Landcare Conference Field Trip program will be postponed to Tuesday 23 August 2022.

A highlight of the 2021 National Landcare Conference program is the National Landcare Awards, and this year due to COVID-19, the event will be held online. From across Australia, 69 finalists representing nine National Landcare Award categories will come together for the announcement of the 2021 National Landcare Award winners. This event is proudly supported by the Australian Government, Austcover, Australian Community Media, KPMG and Woolworths.

We were to host the National Landcare Conference and National Landcare Awards (with the finalists from the 2019 State and Territory Landcare Awards) in 2020, however due to the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic, both events will take place online in August 2021. The National Landcare Conference and National Landcare Awards are biennial events. This means that we will host the 2022 National Landcare Conference and 2022 National Landcare Awards (with the finalists from the 2021 State and Territory Landcare Awards) from Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 August, 2022, with the gala dinner hosted on Wednesday 24 August, 2022.


Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, particularly the lockdown in Sydney, this year’s 2021 National Landcare Conference and 2021 National Landcare Awards events will be hosted online.

We are restricted by the NSW Government to the number of people who can attend the events. It is anticipated that the 1 person per 4sqr metre rule will be in effect in August thereby significantly reducing the number of delegates who can attend.

With so many of our delegates, speakers, Landcare Awards finalists, sponsors and exhibitors travelling from across Australia and regional NSW, there is a risk that many people may be required to quarantine on their return to home. We have been working closely all year with the venue and our professional conference organiser to ensure that we could produce an event that is a safe environment for everyone.

About Landcare Australia

Landcare Australia is a national not-for-profit organisation established more than 30 years ago that supports the landcare community with funding, capacity-building, on-ground projects, information, networking and promotion of landcare achievements.

Together with the landcare community, our efforts improve biodiversity, build resilience in Australia’s food and farming systems, and create stronger communities. As a leader in the environmental sector, Landcare Australia has strong expertise in designing, managing and completing challenging and complex major ecological restoration projects involving large scale revegetation and carbon abatement.

Established in 1989 by the late former Prime Minister, the Hon. Bob Hawke AC, Landcare Australia supports over 6,000 groups and 100,000+ volunteers with landcare projects that are focused on sustainable land management practices and environmental conservation.

Landcare Australia has worked collaboratively with federal, state and local governments and their agencies, Landcare peak bodies, corporate and philanthropic partners, sponsors, community groups and individuals to support the landcare community. This long-standing engagement with local community-led environmental initiatives has led to the organisation’s renowned reputation and trust by Australians.

Landcare Australia develops campaigns in partnership with stakeholders to:

  • support the sharing of knowledge and promote the development of community leadership and resilience;
  • recognise and celebrate the achievements of the landcare community;
  • encourage participation in landcare activities and the recruitment and retention of volunteers;
  • attract government, corporate and philanthropic funding and in-kind support for good quality, hands on projects and programs that will improve environmental outcomes; and
  • support the adoption of sustainable agriculture practices that will deliver a more productive and profitable agriculture industry.

For over 30 years, Landcare Australia has worked at the forefront of community and corporate engagement in natural resource management and environmental project delivery. Custodian of the ‘caring hands’ logo, Landcare Australia manages the Landcare, Coastcare, Junior Landcare and Landcare Farming brands on behalf of the landcare movement. The Landcare brand is recognised and trusted, with consistently positive attitudes in local communities towards landcare projects, and 78% awareness among Australians of the landcare ‘Caring Hands’ logo.

The funding and in-kind contributions raised from partnerships and sponsors supports Landcare Australia to develop programs that are practical, deliverable and community focused.

Through this support Landcare Australia achieves a diverse range of positive environmental and community outcomes, these include:

  • a sustainable approach to integrated land management
  • environmental protection, enhancement and conservation of land, water, waterways and coasts
  • natural habitat restoration to enhance biodiversity
  • building resilience in Australia’s food and farming systems
  • creating social cohesion and wellbeing in communities.

With the impact of a changing climate, and natural disasters like drought, bushfires and flood, landcare has never been so important.

What makes Landcare Australia unique to any other national environmental organisation is effective partnerships and people. Across Australia, our partnerships support thousands of people involved in Landcare who are volunteering to protect local ecosystems that contribute to the sustainability and productivity of our land and water assets for the benefit of all Australians.

To read more about Landcare Australia, please visit our website.


Landcare evolved in Victoria through an initiative of Joan Kirner, (then Minister for Conservation, Forests and Lands) and Heather Mitchell, (then President of the Victorian Farmers Federation).

With the generous support of community members, farmers and Victorian departmental officers, Heather Mitchell and Joan Kirner were able to launch ‘Landcare’ in a small town in central Victoria in November 1986.

Many Australian communities had already begun practising ‘Landcare’ decades earlier; accounts from some of our most enduring Landcare groups show grass roots environmental issues being tackled as early as the 1950s. In January 1988, Australia’s first official Dunecare groups formed on the New South Wales Mid North Coast at Hat Head, Diamond Beach, Scotts Head and Diggers Beach.

In 1989, the national Landcare movement was officially recognised with Rick Farley of the National Farmers Federation (NFF), and Phillip Toyne of the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF), successfully encouraging the Hawke Government to commit to supporting the emerging movement.

Landcare became a national programme on 20 July, 1989 in Wentworth NSW, when the Australian Government with bipartisan support, announced its “Decade of Landcare Plan” and committed $320 million to fund the National Landcare Programme. 1989 was also the year that the national not-for-profit organisation Landcare Australia was established.

The national formation of the Landcare movement brought farmers and conservationists together to resolve environmental issues. In his speech to launch Landcare, former Prime Minister Bob Hawke AC spoke about the importance of co-operation to care for the land.

“The degradation of our environment is not simply a local problem, nor a problem for one state or another, nor for the Commonwealth alone. Rather, the damage being done to our environment is a problem for us all – and not just government- but for all of us individually and together.”

Over the last 30+ years, Landcare has evolved to become one of the largest volunteer movements in Australia. There are thousands of people and countless communities working together towards sustainable land use and undertaking on-ground action to protect, enhance or restore an area on behalf of the community. The Landcare model has been so successful it has been adopted in over 20 countries.

Landcare plays a leading role in advocating a balance between Australian sustainable land management practices and environmental conservation.

Landcare activities deliver a diverse range of positive environmental and community outcomes. These include the environmental protection, enhancement and conservation of land, water, waterways and coasts, natural habitat restoration to enhance biodiversity, building resilience in Australia’s food and farming systems, and helping create social cohesion and wellbeing in communities.

From the coast to the country, and from urban cities to the outback, landcare’s greatest asset is its people. With over 6,000 groups and 100,000+ volunteers, the landcare movement is diverse and encompasses farmers and farming systems groups, landowners, Landcare groups and networks, Traditional Owners, Bushcare and ‘Friends of’ groups, Coastcare, Dunecare and Rivercare groups, Landcare facilitators and coordinators, youth groups and other community groups involved in protecting, enhancing or restoring their local environment. The Junior Landcare program provides a pathway for children to become lifelong landcarers starting with early learning childhood centres through to primary and secondary schools.

What makes landcare unique to any other community movement is the very large number of active groups, and the effective partnerships created between business, researchers, natural resource management agencies, government and community. These partnerships build local community ownership of issues, unlock volunteer knowledge, capability and capacity to create better outcomes for the environment and those that seek to protect and enhance it.

Landcare is about working together caring for the land to preserve our natural resources and biodiversity for generations to come. Landcare enables people to actively care for the natural environment in their community.

The Landcare movement is supported by the National Landcare Network and the peak bodies across Australia: Landcare VictoriaLandcare TasmaniaLandcare ACTLandcare WA, NT LandcareQueensland Water and Land Carers, Landcare NSW, Landcare South Australia.