From Amanda Cox, Chair of the Parks Leaders Forum
We are the only species that can make it better for ourselves. Our relationship with nature is critical to our survival, and in turn we are kaiwhakahaere matua of the places where we live.
Parks are central to our wellbeing and bring great enjoyment to all who use them. Aotearoa/ New Zealand is blessed in our huge network of green open spaces, from magnificent world heritage parks, national parks, sacred cultural sites, large regional parks, marine parks, urban parks, botanical gardens, arboretums, predator free sanctuaries, trail networks, playgrounds, sports reserves and small neighbourhood parks. All these places provide for us and make this country such a wonderful place to live and visit.
Parks are pivotal to our neighbourhoods and our economy; parks support our communities and the way we do things. They are a natural solution for climate change, they are a base for tourism and are often sources of our drinking water. Parks are the only activity that cover all the four well-beings, performing a massive role across the cultural, social, environmental and economic landscape. Parks are a living democracy, parks are for people, and yes parks are forever.
The New Zealand Parks Leaders Forum, (PLF) is the industry leading not-for-profit incorporated society bringing together the people crucial in providing for the leadership and enjoyment of these parks. We are a group of leaders that provide connection and support, building capability in ourselves and in our industry. PLF is New Zealand based and international; it is a strong network between peoples and we all work together to enhance “the experience and benefits of parks”. Our members are parks agency leaders Treaty and mana whenua partners, tertiary institutions, professional associations, businesses and governance leaders committed to making better places for our communities.
PLF members have access to leadership opportunities, best practice interactive portals and opportunities for networking, professional development and support networks. Professional development is in the form of on-line services and networking, either by video or member-access, (with field trips, multi day industry tours, and meetings on relevant topics). We work together within the contexts and pressures of the day and in these times of change and uncertainty we show leadership and support.