Mistletoe Bay Trust named Supreme Winner at Trustpower National Community Awards

Department of Conservation —  29/04/2014

Mistletoe Bay Trust was named Supreme Winner at this year’s Trustpower National Community Awards for its Mistletoe Bay Eco Village and Campground in the Marlborough Sounds.

DOC Ranger Wendy Sullivan writes…

The gorgeous Mistletoe Bay.

The gorgeous Mistletoe Bay

Mistletoe Bay Trust is a not-for-profit charitable organisation formed in 2003 when DOC was looking at options for the ongoing management of Mistletoe Bay Reserve and Campground.

After negotiating a Control and Management Agreement (CMA) with DOC, the Trust went on to create a sustainable Eco Village facility.

Outward Bound volunteers improving the road.

Outward Bound volunteers improving the road

The volunteer organisation makes the most of its native bush setting to give visitors—particularly children—a hands-on experience of living sustainably, with energy-efficient cabins, recycling, water collection and on-site sewage treatment.

Their education programme is particularly inspiring. The Mistletoe experience includes a sustainability tour, sailing, kayaking, fishing, tramping, camping, beach/stream/pond study, native planting, maintaining vegetable gardens (for their Eat-Fit Programmes) and enjoying the native bush and bay.

An ideal venue for leadership skill building.

An ideal venue for leadership skill building

The income from general visitors, including wedding parties and conferences, helps pays for school groups to the Bay.

80% of the time Mistletoe is for kids, and the other 20% enables that.

Students learning new outdoor skills.

Students learning new outdoor skills

At the National Community Awards, each organisation gives an eight minute presentation on their group or activity along with a 1,000 word summary.

The groups are judged by their peers, with peer judging making up 50% of the final score and the other 50% coming from an independent judging panel.

The efforts of the Trust over the last 10 years were judged as “outstanding”, “inspirational”, “mind blowing”, “a model of sustainability and environmental education to be duplicated around the country”.

Simon Heath, Chair of the Trust.

Simon Heath, Chair of the Trust

You may be able to feel the passion from this group from reading the extract of an email that Simon Heath (Chair of the Trust) sent around on the Monday following the award ceremony…

“There is no doubt, through our collective energy, efforts and vision, we have done something very special for Marlborough and New Zealand. I just wish we could have all been together with our partners (who are a huge part of what we have done and do) to step onto that stage and feel that pride and humility that comes with receiving such a prestigious award…”

The NZ Army built the Mistletoe conference room.

The NZ Army built the Mistletoe conference room

As Trustpower National Community Award Supreme Winner, Mistletoe Bay Trust received a trophy, a framed certificate, $2,500 prize money, a $500 voucher from Exult, a leading specialist training provider for the not-for-profit sector, and the increased profile and recognition that comes with this national success.

So, if you are looking for somewhere to get married, hold a team bonding session or conference, or just enjoy a great camping spot, check out Mistletoe Bay—but book early!