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The Drains to Harbour Project

The Drains to Harbour (DTH) project has engaged 80% of Whangarei Schools in stormwater education since 2006, stencilled over 300 stormwater drains and installed over 200 permanent drain plaques which help to remind the community that anything that goes down the drain ends up in our waterways and harbour.

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The DTH project empowers schools and communities by providing hands-on experiences in the environment. After these experiences, students are encouraged to put their knowledge into action within the community.

The Drains to Harbour (DTH) project was successfully piloted in the winter of 2006 and has now been running in Whangarei for 8 years, thanks to support from the Whangarei District Council. The Whitebait Connection is committed to continuing to provide this programme to schools in the Whangarei District and continue to make the programmes resources available nationally.

The DTH programme involves a classroom introduction to stormwater pollution sources and effects, a field trip to a local stream to investigate water quality, an optional visit to the Whangarei Wastewater Treatment Plant or Dragonfly Springs stormwater polishing wetlands and an opportunity for students to use the DTH stencils to spray-paint the DTH message near stormwater drains in the surrounding community, and associated classroom student activities  and teacher information resource booklet.

The DTH programme uses eco-friendly Paint Plus products for drain stencilling.

The Drains-to-Harbour programme offers

  • Free posters, brochures and relevant information for your school to keep.
  • Free stormwater pollution presentation (led by DTH educator, using PowerPoint, video and sound)
  • Free coordination/organisation of field trips to local stream, wastewater treatment plant and drain stencilling sites.
  • Free curriculum and safety management planning with teachers involved.
  • Free coordination of volunteers to assist on field trips. A maximum of 1 class (or 30 students) per school can participate in coordinated field trips to local streams at one time. A maximum of 6 students per school can participate in the drain labelling exercise outside school grounds. All students can participate in a ‘chalk art’ activity within the school grounds and help to spread the DTH message.

The DTH campaign is a professional stormwater pollution awareness campaign coordinated in Northland by Kim Jones (National WBC programme coordinator, Environmental Management and Conservation Diploma, Certificate in Business Administration and Computing) and Nicki Wakefield (Bachelor of Science).

We are committed to the care and safety of all who we associate with.

To register your school’s interest and arrange initial meeting, please contact Kim Jones by email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 09 434 0779. The DTH programme is currently supported by The Whangarei District Council (WDC) and the Mountains To Sea Conservation Trust.

See what other schools have been up to by clicking on the links below:

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