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Byron Shire
February 26, 2021

Body artist celebrates tree day

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Planet Ark’s National Tree Day manager Debbie Agnew becomes a canvas for Orly Faya’s artistry. Photo supplied.
Planet Ark’s National Tree Day manager Debbie Agnew becomes a canvas for Orly Faya’s artistry. Photo supplied.

Get down and gritty is the message from Planet Ark for this year’s National Tree Day as they encourage people to get inspired by nature and plant trees this Sunday July 30. This year, internationally recognised Byron body painter Orly Faya is an ambassador for Tree Day. Orly specialises in merging people into natural landscapes and her intention is to inspire activism through creativity and remind us of our intrinsic connection to nature. She recently came together with Debbie Agnew, national tree day manager from Planet Ark, to create a video that took Debbie on a journey of connection with the Earth and nature.

‘I mostly work with art immersion and the eco-therapeutic experience,’ said Orly.  ‘It’s been amazing to work with such a special person as Debbie when she chose to volunteer herself as a statement for her organisation.’

Last year more than 300,000 people took part at more than 3,500 sites around Australia, planting more than 1.1 million native trees, shrubs and grasses to green their communities.

Research from Planet Ark has shown that spending time outdoors provides a range of health and wellbeing benefits, by making people happier, healthier, and calmer. A new 2017 report also shows that learning outdoors can help kids develop the crucial skills Australian teachers say they will need most to face major global challenges, such as climate change, in the future: critical thinking and problem solving, ‘grit’ or resilience, and emotional intelligence.

‘National Tree Day is also an opportunity to help our children develop a lifelong connection to nature, so that they may become the caretakers of the future,’ said Debbie.

‘There are lots of other ways we can build more nature time into a child’s life too, such as taking indoor activities, like meals, homework or devices, outside, walking the dog in a park, or joining an outdoor group such as the Scouts, Guides or Junior Landcare.’

For more information visit treeday.planetark.org or call the National Tree Day Hotline on 1300 88 5000.

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