Sunday, 9th February 2020

A new educational program and purpose-built apiary in the Southern Metropolitan region is teaching the community to care for and protect bees thanks to support from the Victorian Government’s Pick My Project initiative.

The Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing officially opened the new apiary at the GWS Anderson Scout Park in Officer on Sunday 9 February, which will promote bee awareness and help establish new bee colonies in the local region.

Featuring a purpose-designed outdoor teaching facility, honey-extraction room and a honey tasting and viewing area, the apiary will support Scouts, students and local communities to learn about bees and their importance to the world ecosystem and food supply.

Students will also learn about the inner-workings of hives and hive maintenance, engage in honey-extraction as well as have the opportunity to dress in a bee suit and become an assistant bee-keeper in the apiary.

The new facility is part of the Bee Experience Education Program which received $31,530 in funding from the Pick My Project initiative and was one of 31 successful projects funded in the Southern Metropolitan region.

Pick My Project is a Victorian Government first – a $30 million community grants initiative empowering Victorians to generate project ideas that make their local community an even better place to live, then vote for their favourite projects to be funded.

Pick My Project has awarded funding to 237 successful project ideas state-wide, with grants ranging from $20,000 to $200,000 allocated between Victoria’s six metropolitan and nine regional partnership areas.

Since 2018, the Southern Metropolitan region has received more than $3.64 million in funding through the Pick My Project initiative, after a total of 37,490 votes were cast across the region’s local communities.

See all of the successful projects at

Quotes attributable to Minister for Suburban Development, Marlene Kairouz MP

“With bee populations around the world under threat, the “Bee Experience Education Program” in Officer is a very important community initiative and the Government is proud to be supporting it through Pick My Project.”

 Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria, Harriet Shing MP

“Food security, biodiversity and the environment are high priorities for young Victorians and the bee education and awareness initiative enables locals to gain the knowledge and experience they need to better understand and protect bees as a cornerstone of our environmental health and agricultural prosperity.”