Greater Bank marks milestone by planting 75,000 trees

Greater Bank marks milestone by planting 75,000 trees

Greater Bank is marking its 75-year anniversary by launching a legacy project that will grow and prosper with communities for many years to come.

Greater Bank CEO, Scott Morgan, announced last week that the Newcastle-born, customer-owned bank is celebrating the milestone by planting 75,000 trees across regional NSW over the next 12 months.

Around 45,000 trees and plants will be planted at key locations around Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, the Hunter, and Port Stephens.

All remaining trees will be planted across other regions within Greater Bank’s area of operation, including Central Coast, Illawarra, Dubbo, Tamworth and Tweed Heads.

In launching the campaign in Newcastle, Scott said that the tree planting projects are symbolic of the role Greater Bank has played in growing together with its communities over the past 75 years.

“As we reach our 75th year of operation, we’re proudly celebrating the role we have played in helping the communities we call home,” Scott said.

“From our foundations, we have always been owned by our members, our customers, and in return we have focused on nurturing our relationships with them and the communities in which we operate.

“It was important for us that in celebrating the milestone we contribute to a cause that is important to our customers. The need to protect and nurture the environment was a consistent message delivered by customers across our areas of operation, which is why we’ve committed to planting 75,000 trees throughout regional NSW.

“The trees will not only provide these communities with an ongoing legacy to mark this milestone, but as they grow, they will provide an enduring symbol of our commitment to social responsibility and sustained support of local communities.”

The plantings will begin in Newcastle, the Hunter, Lake Macquarie, and Port Stephens from September across the following sites.

  • Port Stephens Koala Sanctuary
  • Wallsend Wetlands
  • Cockle Creek, Lake Macquarie
  • King Edward Park, Newcastle
  • Bull and Tourle Street Reserve, Mayfield West
  • Heaton Park and Maclure Reserve, Jesmond
  • Wallsend Park and Ironbark Creek, Wallsend
  • North Creek, Warners Bay
  • Williams Valley, Dungog
  • Luskintyre

“This project has been many months in the making, which has included working closely with local councils and other environmental groups to select the most appropriate sites for the planting. These groups have also provided valuable direction as to the types and species of plants to ensure they complement and support the local habitats,” Scott said.

“Once completed the project will have a significant impact on the local environments. Beyond the flora regeneration of the respective sites, collectively, the 75,000 trees will have the capacity to absorb 1,650,000 kgs of carbon dioxide each year. That offsets 97 people per year and emissions from 600 cars.”

Joining the launch is 13-year-old, Gigi Hubber, who features in Greater Bank’s recently launched 75th anniversary campaign.

The Charlestown-based high school student is extremely passionate about the environment, and reinforced why projects like this are so important, particularly to our younger generations.

“From a young age my parents showed me documentaries and books about the environment and as I’ve got older, I’ve realised that we need to do more to protect it,” Gigi said.

“We need to inform people, older and younger generations, about the impacts we are having every day and how we need to change our ways before it’s too late.

“It makes me feel really happy seeing companies not just focusing on money, but actually giving back to the community and focusing on making the world a better place.”

The Greater Newcastle Co-operative Permanent Building and Investment Society was established in 1945 with a focus on supporting those people who would not normally have the capacity to purchase their own home.

Their aim was to provide members with loans that were interest-free or have a low rate so people without capital could obtain their own home.

The underlying principle of supporting its customers has been fundamental to the organisation’s fabric over the past 75 years and remains central to who Greater Bank is today.

While its roots remain firmly entrenched in Newcastle, Greater Bank has continued to grow and prosper beyond its traditional boundaries and today support more than 270,000 customers across NSW and South East Queensland.

IMAGE | Mick Raynor, Greater Bank CEO, Scott Morgan, and Gigi Hubber (left-right).

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