Our programmes

The main focus of the Untouched World™ Charitable Trust is building leadership capability both for 16 -17 year olds, and pre-service teachers and tertiary trainees. The students and pre-service teachers are mentored by lecturers, teachers and community educators from a range of backgrounds. Professional Development opportunities for DOC and other related program expertise also continues to grow as we celebrate our 15th operating year.

Marlborough Sounds – Island Restoration

The Blumine Island project is the Trust's foundation programme where we have been working for 15 years. Focused on returning the island to its original state, without introduced predators, and then developing a sanctuary for native animal and plant species at risk. Key outcomes are:

  • Youth leadership through personal experience
  • Predator free status, leading to the reintroduction of Kiwi
  • Feedback planning and action – in a context of biodiversity
  • Cultural best practice and conservation
  • Evaluation and implementation of new ideas
  • Encouraging community benefits for the Marlborough Sounds

We have been living and acting sustainably all week. We have been doing this not for ourselves but for the future of all humans and animals.

Katie Keir, Queen Charlotte College

I loved learning about the history of Blumine Island, the wildlife and about conservation. I made new friends and I really want to make an effort to improve life on this island.

Malaika Cockerell, Lincoln High School

Check out the clip below to see what the team from TV3's Campbell Live thought of their trip to Blumine Island...

Waterwise - Canterbury & Otago

In partnership with Ngai Tahu, ECAN, Otago Community Trust, Rata Foundation, Otago Regional Council, Contact Energy and Otago Polytechnic, our Waterwise programmes are in their 5th year in Canterbury, and 3rd in Otago. They explore student understanding of primarily four issues pertaining to this most critical of resources;

  • use
  • availability
  • quality
  • economics

Waterwise students are exposed to, and interact with, all players in the water resource chain, from the primary energy players, through to the farming, recreation, cultural and conservation interests, all of whom are involved in sustainable water management.

Waterwise 2016
Waterwise 2016

Tongariro Kiwi/Whio Forever

In its 12th year the Trust’s primary Kiwi programme is centred around Ruapehu National Park and is focused on our national icon, the Kiwi. Based on Ngati Rangi marae at the foot of the mountain, ‘Kiwi Forever’ has a strong cultural focus, and examines the challenges the flightless Kiwi faces in its fight for survival. The programme highlights the importance of learning to work cooperatively with a variety of people, understanding the spiritual connection of Maori to the Kiwi and the personal satisfaction of helping to save endangered species. Key outcomes are:

  • Youth leadership through personal experience
  • Feedback planning and action – in a context of the Kiwi Forever programme
  • Knowledge of the biodiversity of Kiwi
  • The importance of Kiwi to Maori
  • What does it is mean to be a known as a Kiwi (person/icon)? What would be the impact if New Zealand lost its national icon?

GENESIS ENERGY joined this programme's support base in 2013 and committed to continue through to 2017. Genesis's own work on Whio has been aligned to further enrich this program.

Show more student comments...

The Untouched World Waterwise program I attended at the end of 2015 taught me how experiential learning in an environment outside of the classroom can be incredibly effective when teaching students about their environment. In Waterwise I was taken out of my comfort zone into learning environments I had never experienced. As a result I was not only engaged with the subject matter but I feel I gained a truer and more memorable knowledge of the content that was put in front of me. However I know that not everyone has access to this type of experience, so by giving every boy going through Otago Boys an experiential learning experience that is like a small version of this course, many more boys will be engaged in this subject.

Sam Kilsby – Alumni Champion winner 2016

Earlier this year, I was privileged to attend the Untouched World educational conservation week called Kiwi Forever in the Tongariro National Park. I don’t usually use the term life changing, however this week changed my perspective and consequently my worldview towards conservation and its necessity in New Zealand. This course has inspired and motivated me to start work on organising a Taupo Environmental Committee which involves the other interested students from the Kiwi Forever Experience.

Javan Rose – Alumni Champ 2016

According to my parents, the Mt John Observatory tour was really quite expensive, but for my 11-year-old-self, with no concept of cost or expense, it was an incredible and memorable experience that planted in me a lasting interest in astronomy and the outdoors. This was further stimulated by my participation in UWCT’s Blumine Island project. The experience of spending a week immersed in nature is one that I will treasure for a long time, and something I hope to share with other young people in my community.

Kate Stedman – Alumni Champ 2016

UWCT’s WaterWise Camp 2016 was probably the best camp I’ve ever been to in my life. I just can’t explain how much this camp means to me with the amount of knowledge I’ve gained, the phenomenal people I’ve met and how I’ve grown as an individual. The 7 days of December 2016 was the most amazing 7 days in my life. I just can’t believe that it has ended, I wish I was still there with the same people, learning new things about water and its use and having fun along the way.

Writing this actually brings tears in my eyes as the people I’ve met and interacted with aren’t just friends but more like family, I guess leaving them was just unbelievably hard. I don’t think I’ve ever bonded with a group of people in a short period of time like I have with everyone at WaterWise 2016. This was truly an extraordinary camp. This camp isn’t just about learning about water use and leadership, this camp is also about finding yourself and how you work in a new and unknown environment, which I think is amazing. All I can really wish for, is that this camp continues to run and hopefully create a similar vibe with the new groups of people

Divesh Singh, Dep Head Boy, Wakatipu High School, Waterwise Otago

This course offers such a unique experience and I am truly thankful for this opportunity as I feel that it has significantly impacted me as a person. Before going to the camp I was not overly confident and I wouldn’t always feel comfortable expressing my opinion when in a large group of strangers, however this camp defiantly made me more confident in myself and in dealing with other people and now I am not afraid to speak my mind when it comes to topics that I feel strongly about. Even my friends have noticed that I have ‘come out of my shell’ so to speak, and have remarked that there is a big change between me last year and this year and I believe that is largely, if not fully, as a result of this camp. Not only that, but I have made some amazing friends and met some thought provoking people which I have really enjoyed getting to know. Thank you.

Bianca Crighton, Waterwise Otago

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