Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator

1. Background

This is a position for a self-employed person with strong project management skills, predator control knowledge and experience and excellent interpersonal skills.

The Summit Road Society launched Predator Free Port Hills in November 2016, with the goal of effectively eliminating rats, possums and mustelids from the Port Hills by 2050. Currently, nearly 1600 households have signed up to the Predator Free Port Hills programme. This is a hands-on role working with local communities to support and grow backyard and community trapping across the Port Hills and Lyttelton Harbour.  

Our vision is to protect native species and to see their populations flourish in our lifetimes. Ultimately, we want the Port Hills to become predator free with thriving native wildlife in our neighbourhoods, local parks and reserves, farmland and bush areas. Predator Free Port Hills supports local grassroots action to protect our native species.

2. The Summit Road Society

Predator Free Port Hills is a project under the umbrella of the Summit Road Society whose mission is to “enhance, preserve and protect the natural environment, beauty and open character of the Port Hills of Banks Peninsula for people to enjoy”. The Society has developed a strategic plan for the period 2020-2025 as well as a more detailed operational plan for Predator Free Port Hills.

The elected Board of the Summit Road Society comprises a President, Vice-President, Treasurer and up to seven members, plus representatives from the Christchurch City and Selwyn District Councils. The Predator Free Port Hills coordinator will report to the Board of the Society.

The Summit Road Society has close working relationships with the Christchurch City Council and in particular the Port Hills Ranger Service. The Society also has representatives on the Port Hills (Mt. Vernon) Park Trust, the Summit Road Advisory Committee, the Harry Ell Summit Road Memorial Trust, Pest Free Banks Peninsula and Te Kākahu Kahukura.

3. The Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator Position

This is a hands-on role focused on supporting and growing the Predator Free Port Hills movement:

  • Provide hands-on training, advice and support for local volunteer coordinators:
    • Support volunteer coordinators to engage with their local communities through market days, fêtes, community newsletters, mailbox drops and trap building days
    • Provide ongoing training and advice to local volunteer coordinators on best practice backyard trapping and PFPH systems and processes.
    • Support the volunteer steering group for the project.
  • Ensure a regular supply of traps for backyard trappers
    • Ordering and receiving traps
    • Preparing traps for sale and distributing these to local volunteer coordinators to allocate to their communities
    • Working with local conservation groups to prepare materials for trap building days
    • Maintain trap records
  • Provide information, advice, training and ongoing support to backyard and community trappers to ensure they are achieving the best results possible through regular workshops, newsletters and social media.
  • Promote the Predator Free Port Hills programme through public talks, workshops and media stories.
  • Maintain and improve the Predator Free Port Hills website and social media to capture the impact of local action.
  • Write articles and collate content for the Predator Free Port Hills newsletter three times a year.
  • Work with schools, preschools and community groups to promote the Predator Free Port Hills vision.
  • Work with the General Manager of the Summit Road Society to provide administrative support to ensure the smooth running of the project, including accounts payable and receivable, taking minutes, funding administration and responding to queries.
  • Provide a Port Hills perspective to the Pest Free Banks Peninsula programme through participation at project management group meetings.
  • Work with the General Manager of the Summit Road Society to apply for grants and seek other funding to support the long term future of this programme.
  • Work collaboratively with local and central government, other conservation groups and local communities to provide pathways for landscape-scale predator control on public and private land.
  • Attend and report monthly to the Board of the Summit Road Society

Functional Relationships

The Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator shall take instructions from the Board and will seek approval from them for any significant action or programmes they might wish to initiate. Within the Society, the Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator will maintain good relationships with all Board members, the General Manager, consultants and volunteers.

The Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator will maintain ongoing liaison and good relationships with the Christchurch City Council, Selwyn District Council, Environment Canterbury, central government agencies, local hapū, Pest Free Banks Peninsula, community organisations and predator free groups in order to promote the Predator Free Port Hills vision. The Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator will be a key member of the Pest Free Banks Peninsula project management group.

Person Specification

Ideally the Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator will:

  • Be passionate about the protection and restoration of native biodiversity.
  • Be a strong team player.
  • Be a confident public speaker.
  • Be a natural leader and teacher able to inspire others to take personal action to protect our native species.
  • Have exceptional interpersonal skills to work collaboratively with others, build effective relationships and influence a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Have practical experience in predator control or similar activities that serve to protect New Zealand’s native biodiversity.
  • Have experience in grant writing and fundraising (desirable).
  • Have a clean, current, full Drivers Licence  and own vehicle suitable for carrying traps.
  • Be available on some evenings and weekends.

Note: The successful applicant will be required to obtain a Police Vet (which is required for working with children).

4. Office Location
The Summit Road Society does not have its own administration office and the Predator Free Port Hills Coordinator is responsible for providing their office space. The Summit Road Society has a shipping container at Victoria Park for the storage of traps. It is desirable that the Coordinator has storage space (approx. 8 m3) onsite for ready accessibility of traps.

5. Hours of Work
Since this is a contract position, the Coordinator will be expected to cover the tasks and functions as set out above in an efficient and appropriate manner. The working hours are those required to fulfil the functions described and as agreed by the Board.

Hours of work can generally be completed within normal business hours. However, regular evening and weekend work is required, for example, for meetings, talks and trapping events. Board meetings are currently held on the third Tuesday of the month 7pm to 9pm.

6. Conditions of Self Employment
This is a contract position with effect from November 2023.

The general tasks are described and outlined in the clauses above. A work plan will be developed for each six month period.

The schedule of tasks and conditions of the contract will be reviewed by the Board Chairperson after the first six months and then at the end of February each year. The contract may be terminated with one month’s notice either way.

The workload will vary from week to week and month to month but is not expected to
exceed 120 hours in any one calendar month.  An hourly contract fee will be negotiated and reviewed annually, noting that hours may be reduced or extended depending on success in applications for funding. This will be paid upon the Board’s receipt of a monthly invoice accompanied by a report of activities, tasks undertaken, hours allocated and targets achieved.

The Coordinator is responsible for the costs of providing their office, phone, answerphone, computer, printer and copier, internet, travel time and transport costs. The Society will meet the reasonable costs of stationery and postage. Extraordinary expenses may be paid as additional disbursements, subject to prior approval by the President and submission of a detailed invoice.