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Rod & Annette

Published 30 Sep 2016 

Why become a Bush Heritage donor?

Rod Martin has supported Bush Heritage since the beginning, and he and his wife Annette recently made the decision to leave a gift to the organisation in his Will. Rod talks about why Bush Heritage is so important to him.

Donors Rod Martin and Annette Mackie. Photo Gary Marsh.
Donors Rod Martin and Annette Mackie. Photo Gary Marsh.
How did you first become Bush Heritage donors?

It was 1991 and my wife Annette and I were on a camping and bushwalking trip through Tasmania. We had our car, a tent and we were roaming around when we heard Bob Brown talk about his new organisation on the radio. A few days later we were walking through Liffey Falls, a stone’s throw from the property he had saved from logging.

The Liffey area was certainly wildly different in terms of vegetation and real rivers that our home in South Australia doesn’t have. The natural world is important in many ways and to think that this area was almost lost? I just knew that we had to help.

Why do you support Bush Heritage?

We always hope that the conservation of wildlife is not arbitrary, but that every individual will come to value conservation.

Why Bush Heritage specifically? The Bush Heritage model of acquiring land means that the impact of your money will go on and on – it will be long-lasting. And we know and trust them! They have the right people, knowledge, skills and they’ve been around for quite a while now.

Which of your visits to a Bush Heritage property stands out the most?

View from White Stallion Lookout, Carnarvon Reserve. Photo Cathy Zwick.
View from White Stallion Lookout, Carnarvon Reserve. Photo Cathy Zwick.
We had a three-day visit to Carnarvon Reserve in Queensland about five or six years ago. The managers at the time and a professional ecologist showed us around and explained what they were doing to measure the current state of the property and what their aims were to repair it and eradicate some of the feral animals and buffel grass.

Sitting around a barbeque and the campfire we got talking to the staff and the ecologists and asked lots of questions. We learned quite a lot at that time. It was a very detailed, professional and fun visit and allowed us to get hands-on with Bush Heritage and their work.

How did you decide to leave a gift to Bush Heritage in your Will?

Eventually you get old enough to start thinking about your Will. When we thought about where we would leave our money, we realised that we agreed with what Bush Heritage is doing and thought that it was a worthwhile organisation to leave our estate with.

Carnarvon Reserve. Photo Emma Burgess.
Carnarvon Reserve. Photo Emma Burgess.
Rather than spread it around to thousands of deserving organisations we thought it was more effective and simple to just make out a Will to Bush Heritage – it just seemed the logical choice.

What would you say to anyone else thinking about leaving a bequest to Bush Heritage?

That it’s very worthwhile. Bush Heritage is very professional and they know what they’re doing. Their use of a fact-based scientific approach to conservation with professionals such as ecologists, botanists and landscape managers, sets them apart from many other organisations. You can trust them. They have the right people, knowledge and skills and they deserve the support.