Last years restoration planting season with 28 volunteers at Opito Bay on 25 July (pictured above). Join us to help protect our beaches and coastal reserves The Coastcare planting season is about to begin for community volunteers. In the Coromandel, Coastcare groups will be planting 44,000 plants to restore the coastal environment. Dunes are deposits of windblown sand, and therefore vulnerable to human activity and extreme weather events. They're important because they act as a buffer between the land and sea, giving protection from coastal erosion. Native coastal plants like spinifex and pingao bind the sand and help capture more sand to rebuild dunes after a storm. Coastcare Waikato is a community partnership programme to restore coastal areas throughout the Waikato region. The programme involves local communities, iwi, the Department of Conservation, district councils and Waikato Regional Council working together to restore, protect and look after our coasts and all the species that live and grow here. As well as promoting community engagement in our environmental initiatives a key goal is to better promote education around coastal restoration. These planting days are a great way to get involved.Planting events are planned for Thames, Port Charles, Whangapoua, Otama, Opito Bay, Kuaotunu, Wharekaho, Buffalo Beach, Flaxmill Bay, Cooks Beach, Hahei, Hot Water Beach, Pauanui, Onemana and Whangamatā.Everyone is welcome to help out. Please contact Thames-Coromandel District Council Coastal Restoration Coordinator Tanya Patrick for more information or keep an eye out on the Coastcare Waikato Facebook page for event dates. Date and times listed below: Rings Beach Sat 5th June - Time & Location TBC Cooks Beach Sun 6th June - Time & Location TBC Whangapoua Sun 6th June – Meet at the playground – 9-11am Opito Bay – Sat 12th June 10am-12:30pm Working Bee's Buffalo Beach dune maintenance and weeding bee – Friday's, 8am-10am at Buffalo Beach reserve, Whitianga. Bring your favourite little spade or garden tool and gloves. Don't forget your water, hat and sunscreen!