NPWS Discovery Programs Policy (PDF - 149 KB) by lindayy


NPWS Discovery Programs Policy (PDF - 149 KB)

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									Discovery Programs Policy



AUTHOR:                                 Mngr, Strategic Policy Division
DATE OF EFFECT                          June 1994
DATE LAST MODIFIED                      July 2002
DUE FOR REVIEW ON                       June 2005
POLICY REFERENCE NO.                    FMiec-001jl02/SP
FILE NO.                                A/4889, 02/07529

Discovery Programs Policy

Discovery Programs Policy

7.9.1         This policy:

              · clarifies the role of Discovery in providing educational and recreational
                experiences to park visitors and off-park activities to the community;

              · highlights the important role of Discovery as a promotional tool in raising the
                NPWS profile;

              · provides to NPWS staff a framework for the operation of Discovery and
                identifies strategies for implementing the program; and

              · highlights the role the Discovery Ranger plays as a significant contact with the


7.9.2         For many years National Parks Discovery - walks, talks and tours (formerly the
              Seasonal Ranger Program) has been providing guided tour activities over the
              school holiday periods, generally within the NPWS estate. Due to funding
              limitations there has been little opportunity to effectively publicise the program
              nor explore a broad range of activities that could be provided to the community.
              Therefore the program has tended to attract the same participants each year.

7.9.3         Traditionally the program has been a service provided free of charge. This has
              been possible due to the majority of funding being provided by the NPW
              Foundation, with the support of sponsors and additional funds from the NPWS.

7.9.4         Although the Foundation and the NPWS are committed to supporting the
              program, the financial resources required by its present structure are increasing
              beyond the level currently available.

7.9.5         Discovery is a valuable community education program. However, it is vital that
              we are creative in working to effectively expand and market the program. Careful
              planning and marketing will allow the NPWS to extend opportunities for
              participation to a wider audience. Furthermore, this will mean that the program is
              more attractive to sponsors and so additional financial support can potentially be

Discovery Programs Policy

6/94                                 DISCOVERY                              7.9.6 - 7.9.10


7.9.6         The aims of the program are to:

              · promote and support the corporate objectives and priorities presented in the
                Corporate Plan and other NPWS strategies;

              · foster enjoyment and appreciation of our natural and cultural heritage;

              · educate the community about national parks and heritage conservation;

              · increase the public profile and community support of the NPWS;

              · provide unique and value-added leisure experiences;

              · welcome people into the national parks and other appropriate NPWS managed
                areas; and

              · increase staff development and employment opportunities.


7.9.7         Community Relations Division (CRD) will coordinate Discovery at the state-wide
              level providing overall policy advice and support services and ensuring the
              Executive and the Foundation are kept informed.

7.9.8         Districts will nominate Discovery coordinators to establish and publicise the
              program’s activities and recruit, train, supervise and evaluate the work of the
              Discovery Rangers.

              · Each region will nominate a Discovery coordinator to provide specialist
                support and act as a communication link between the CRD and the districts.

7.9.9         Activities under Discovery should be an enjoyable recreational and educational
              experience for participants. They should involve a guided tour or activity relevant
              to interpreting our natural and/or cultural heritage in New South Wales. The
              program will include activities that interpret natural, Aboriginal and non-
              Aboriginal sites using staff with the most appropriate skills for that activity.

7.9.10        Activities should be linked to identified peak holiday times. Such times may vary
              from district to district.

Discovery Programs Policy

6/94                                 DISCOVERY                            7.9.10 - 7.9.16

              · Districts are also encouraged to extend their current program (if the potential is
                there) to the broader community and/or other target groups outside the peak
                holiday periods, and this may include off-park guided activities.

7.9.11        There may be opportunities for employing people under contract for Discovery
              (eg storytellers, puppeteers) and also establishing joint ventures with other
              agencies. These initiatives are acceptable and can be negotiated at the district
              level with the final proposal to be clearly established within a NPWS written

7.9.12        Every two to three years (based around the respective Discovery sponsorship
              contract) districts will be requested to submit funding proposals for their
              programs to the region. Proposals will then, once approved, go to the CRD. A
              steering committee consisting of a CRD staff member and two regional
              representatives will then asses the funding proposals making recommendations to
              regions on the district allocations. Regions will endorse their respective district
              allocations before they are provided to the districts.

7.9.13        Submissions for the Discovery funding allocation will cover all related costs-
              wages (including orientation, training and on costs), printing of leaflets,
              advertising, uniforms, travel expenses, specialist equipment and promotion of the

7.9.14        Every financial year each district’s Discovery allocation will be deposited into a
              regional Discovery code and is available when required by the respective district
              using their cost centre code and their regional Discovery code. Any credit
              balances will be carried forward to the next financial year, while any debit
              balance will form a first charge against the following year’s allocation.

7.9.15        Districts are encouraged to develop a user pays and/or donation system to help
              off-set program costs. The funds made can be kept by districts and are to be
              deposited in the respective regional Discovery code and can only be drawn by the
              respective district using their cost centre code.

              · Revenue made from Discovery must go back into recouping program costs.
                However, surplus revenue may be used by the respective district for other
                conservation and/or education oriented projects.

7.9.16        The Discovery funding allocation will continue to provide opportunities for
              extended interpretive guided programs such as Chase Alive type programs and/or
              user-pays programs to be established. These programs will still provide activities
              under the Discovery banner.

Discovery Programs Policy

6/94                                DISCOVERY                             7.9.17 - 7.9.27

7.9.17        As the fund-raising arm of the NPWS, the Foundation will play an active role in
              seeking and securing sponsorship for the program, aiming at acquiring a
              sponsor(s) for a two-three year period.

7.9.18        NPWS staff will maintain the aims of Discovery and at the same time fulfil the
              needs of the sponsor as set down in a contract. This includes involving the
              sponsor’s executive and staff in some of the activities where possible, ensuring
              publicity and sponsor recognition requirements are implemented and that
              evaluation reports are developed as required.

7.9.19        While maintaining the conservation objectives of the NPWS and the aims of the
              program, NPWS staff will ensure that the needs of the majority of participants are
              met. This includes finding out from participants what their needs, interests and
              expectations are, eg by formal and/or informal surveys.

7.9.20        To implement the activities under Discovery, casual and/or temporary staff
              (Discovery Rangers) must be employed on an hourly rate of pay calculated on the
              Trainee Ranger rate.

              · Any volunteers who are involved with Discovery activities cannot be called
                Discovery Rangers. No volunteers (which includes work experience persons)
                will be paid, as per the Volunteer Policy.

7.9.21        No Discovery Ranger will carry out activities to the public unless they have
              completed at least one day’s training.

7.9.22        In circumstances when an activity is cancelled due to unsuitable weather or lack
              of participants, Discovery Rangers will only be given duties that reflect their
              statement of duties.

7.9.23        Discovery Rangers will wear the rangers uniform and a name badge. Both must
              be returned to the district before their final salary is provided.

7.9.24        If there is a need for Discovery Rangers to use 4WD vehicles or specialist
              equipment they must be appropriately trained.

7.9.25        To promote Discovery, CRD in consultation with divisional, regional and district
              staff will develop by August each year, state-wide themes reflecting corporate
              priorities for the following year’s program. Districts are encouraged to use these
              broad themes and the support resources where applicable.

7.9.26        All Discovery publications must be designed in accordance with the NPWS
              Publications Design Standards manual.

Discovery Programs Policy

7.9.27        Wanda the Wombat is the mascot of Discovery. As Wanda serves as a corporate
              image for activities of the NPWS, use of Wanda as a character and image is
              strictly controlled.

6/94                                DISCOVERY                           7.9.28 - 7.9.29

7.9.28        Districts will provide evaluation reports twice each year in May and September
              and participant survey sheets in May each year. The evaluation reports will be
              submitted to regions, collated and summarised and then provided to the CRD.
              The participant survey sheets should be sent as raw data with a Tally Sheet to
              CRD to be collated and prepared into a statewide participant profile.

              · Each year in June CRD will present a corporate report to the Executive and the

              Discovery Kit

7.9.29        The “Discovery Kit” provides supporting information to this policy. Kits are
              available from the Community Educator in the CRD.


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