Eye on Nature

‘Eye on Nature’* (EON) is a bespoke event that promotes sustainable practices in its activities and encourages their adoption by the audience to instigate more sustainable solutions at home and school.

Our vision is to ‘Plant a seed and grow a young mind’ to engage positively in ongoing environmental activities. It will be wonderful to see our children have a deep understanding and appreciation of the fundamental processes that support life on the planet and to become Kaitiaki of their living environment.

It is the Trust’s desire to make it accessible for all to attend and to grow the message of biodiversity in our own backyard and the part each one of us can play. Over three school-only days the Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust and our programme partners deliver educational activities for many schools throughout the Auckland Southern Region, with 500 students attending each day.

Our Family Day opens the event up to the wider community with the same educational messages for families to attend. We not only want to educate our children, we also want the buy in from the parents and the wider community.

Generous Environmental organisations from around New Zealand have been partnering with us to host this event and will continue in 2019 with support from the six Auckland Southern Local Boards, Auckland Botanic Gardens and Second Nature Charitable Trust.

* Eye On Nature wins national Event Award

Eye On Nature surpassed big name events like Dick Smith NRL Auckland Nines and Wellington Jazz Festival to win the prestigious ‘highly commended’ award at the 2014 New Zealand Association of Event Professionals Event Awards.

See images from previous Eye on Nature events and learn all about what is installed for you in 2020 below!



Eye on Nature 2019 took children and their families on an experiential journey through our native New Zealand forest, learning how the health of the forest and all its inhabitants impacts the health of us all. The theme for 2019 was ‘Nurturing our Forest’ Healthy Trees, Healthy me and explores the importance of the many life forms in the forest and how it all intricately works together.


Eye on Nature school days was held on Tuesday 26, Wednesday 27, Thursday 28 March 2019. The school days saw close to 1500 school children immersed in Totara Forest at the Auckland Botanic Gardens. Children aged 9-10 from South and East Auckland, many of whom have little experience of being in nature, became sleuth forest detectives! They spent their time with passionate environmental educators who guided them through a series of investigative activities within the forest. This age is the key time in childhood for the development of a child’s relationship with the natural world. Eye on Nature gives children experiential and action-based opportunities that will shape their attitudes and behaviours in adulthood. We are helping children to become environmental stakeholders or kaitiaki of the natural world and love doing this event year after year. 


Open to all Aucklander’s, the Eye on Nature Family Day was held of on Saturday 30 March 2019 and presented a myriad of events and activities to entertain and educate young minds including guest speaker, Riki Bennett. Familes navigated the bush with Maori storyteller and environmentalist, Park Ranger Riki Bennett and discovered how to identify native trees and the special uses for them in navigation, construction, food and medicine.

Many wonderful activities were on offer to Auckland families at this environmental family day, everyone could: immerse yourself in the bush with Riki Bennett; learn how to build your own pest tracking system to discover what pests animals are threatening the forest in your community; receive the tools to make a pledge to become sustainable in one area of your life; learn how be a part of Predator Free 2020; blend a smoothie with bicycle power; watch cooking demonstrations; support cultural performances; and learn all about how a healthy tree means a healthy you!



Every year Eye on Nature presents an opportunity for Auckland school students to get creative further and learn about the events theme through three different competitions; Creative Arts, Wearable Arts and a Cooking Competition.

Learn more about the competitions below:


Click the images below to see booklets showcasing each of our previous Eye on Nature events.  

 Eye On Nature 2016 Booklet  


We rely heavily on a large crew of volunteers to help us run games, assist with children's crafts, direct visitors and orchestrate our live entertainment and wearable arts shows. It's a fun day, and all volunteers will receive a t-shirt as thanks for their help.


To get involved in Eye on Nature 2019 please contact the team on EON@mbct.org.nz or phone (09) 269 4080.


We were extremely lucky to have many partners supporting Eye on Nature every year.

Each giving phenomenal support to help us achieve another successful event. See our Eye on Nature 2017 sponsors below: 


© Copyright Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust
Auckland, New Zealand