About the Conference

Landcare Australia, together with the 2021 National Landcare Conference Steering Committee, are proud to host the 2021 National Landcare Conference from Wednesday 4 to Friday 6 August at 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.

The 2021 National Landcare Conference includes field trips to a variety of locations across Greater Sydney region and will provide delegates an opportunity to experience the diversity of landcare in Sydney. From sustainable farming to natural resource management projects, the field trips are an opportunity to showcase the conservation and changing land use in Sydney. The program has been created with the generous support of the Field Trip Committee, made up of representatives from Mulgoa Landcare Group, Garguree Swampcare, Greater Sydney Landcare Network, Hawkesbury-Nepean Landcare Network, Community Environment Network, Local Land Services, North Sydney Council, Northern Beaches Council, Hornsby Shire Council, Sutherland Shire Council, Blue Mountains City Council, and Landcare Australia.

A highlight of the 2021 National Landcare Conference program is the National Landcare Awards Gala Dinner. From across Australia, 69 finalists representing nine national awards 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 global pandemic, both events will be hosted 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) in 2022.

About the Venue

Situated at the intersection of Sydney’s academic, cultural and technology precincts, the International Convention Centre, Darling Harbour Sydney (ICC) affords delegates, exhibitors and visitors convenient access to one of Australia’s most cosmopolitan cities. The emerging financial, dining and retail precinct of Barangaroo is nearby; there are numerous galleries, theatres and concert halls within easy reach; and the bustling city centre is only a short walk away. If you need assistance travelling to the ICC in Sydney, please click here for information on parking and public transport. 

For information about the Venue’s COVID-19 safety guidelines, please refer to the ICC Sydney’s EventSafe Operating Guide

International Convention Centre, Darling Harbour Sydney
14 Darling Drive, Sydney, NSW 2000


The health and wellbeing of our delegates, speakers, sponsors and exhibitors is of utmost importance. Due to COVID-19, the 2021 National Landcare Conference and 2021 National Landcare Awards will be hybrid events with both in-person and online delegate options. Landcare Australia is working with the venue to ensure that the conference and awards are delivered consistent with any requirements of the NSW Government and the venues. Landcare Australia will keep all registered delegates informed by email. Subject to the terms and conditions of the refund and cancellation policy, a refund can be provided for paid delegates. Please click here to read our refund and cancellation policy.

For information about the Venue’s COVID-19 safety guidelines, please refer to the ICC Sydney’s EventSafe Operating Guide

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.