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Welcome to 26 Forest & Bird Centennial, a creative conservation collaboration highlighting the importance of volunteers working at-place to restore nature for future generations.

26 Forest & Bird Centennial

Poetry and art have the power to help us connect with nature, open minds to new perspectives, and better understand a landscape or species.

Forest & Bird has teamed up with 26 writers and artists for an exciting project to mark our 100th birthday – and (hopefully) inspire more people to use their time and skills to nurture nature.

The writers and artists were randomly paired up and invited to visit 13 of Forest & Bird’s 120 conservation projects around the country. The locations showcase a variety of habitats, species, and interesting natural features.

Each writer created an original centena and a 260-word essay inspired by their visit. A centena is a poem of exactly 100 words that must start and finish with the same three words.

The artists used a variety of mediums to create original artworks that responded to the landscape, people, species, and conservation challenges encountered during the visit.

It is the second time Forest & Bird has worked with this global not-for-profit organisation for writers who believe in the power of words. Its members donate time to creative projects around the world, most recently focusing on environmental and climate issues.

Writer-editors Jane Berney, Paul White, and Jayne Workman, from the Aotearoa chapter of 26, have been leading the creative side of the centennial project.

“After the success of the 26 Habitats project in 2021, we were delighted to be invited by Forest & Bird to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime project,” says Jane Berney.

“We were warmly welcomed and hosted by volunteers at each reserve, had the privilege of visiting some of the most wonderful places in Aotearoa, and got to work with 13 superb artists recruited by Forest & Bird for the project.”

“The Forest & Bird whānau is thrilled to have welcomed the 26 NZ writers and artists to our projects so they could see the wonderful work conservation volunteers are doing around the country,” says Forest & Bird chief executive Nicola Toki.

“They have dedicated a huge amount of time, creativity, and aroha to this project, and the results are spectacular.”

Lenz Reserve Arethusa Reserve Rangitīkei Reserves 

Walter Scott Reserve Pāuatahanui Reserve Ngaheretuku Reserve

Bushy Park Tarapuruhi Atawhai Whenua Dick Jackson Memorial Reserve 

Ark in the Park Blowhard Bush Reserve Calder Green Reserve Fensham Reserve

For more information about the international project, go to

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