The Tree Project

Community Enterprise Foundation
our trunk funding partner.
The Australian Blacksmiths Association (Victoria)
manages the creation of the tree.

We have a Trunk!
Trunk of the Tree Funded by the Community Enterprise Foundation

It is our great pleasure to accept a grant of $25,000 from the Community Enterprise Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Bendigo and Adelaide Bank. This donation is to fund the steel for the trunk of the Tree, literally and symbolically the support for all the groups, businesses and individuals who are represented in the branches and leaves of the Tree.

These funds are thanks to generous donors who donated to the Community Enterprise Foundation Black Saturday Bushfire Appeal. We would like to acknowledge that this donation has been made possible thanks to the support of Valley Community Financial Services who operate the Bendigo Bank branches of Hurstbridge & Districts, Diamond Creek, Eltham & District and Doreen & Mernda Community Bank  branches and the Kinglake branch.

Lindsay Jolley
Rotary Club of Bright
Chair District Disaster Recovery Committee
(H) (03) 5759 2763
(M) 0416 192 032

Bosco Jonson branch made by Doug Tarrant. Bosco Jonson are a surveying company that have donated their expertise to some of the rebuilding projects following Black Saturday, notably surveying for the Strathewen Recreation Reserve Pavillion.

On Tuesday 5th July 2011 representatives from the Australian Blacksmiths Association (Victoria) accepted a certificate and cheque from the Directors of Valley Community Financial Services on behalf of the Community Enterprise Foundation for the funding of the trunk. On that night many other groups working for the benefit of the community also received grants funded by Valley Community Financial Services.

We are especially proud to have the Community Enterprise Foundation as our trunk funding partner as their commitment to the prosperity, well being and rebuilding of our communities is what a Community Bank should be. We couldn't wish for a more appropriate funding partner.

We would also like to acknowledge and thank the Peter Brock Foundation for being an intermediary funding partner for the Australian Blacksmiths Association (Victoria).

Now we have the funding needed for the trunk and have received the final structural diagrams from the engineers at Sinclair Knight Merz, we are organising the purchase of the stainless steel for the trunk. The trunk will be forged in one complete piece under a large industrial press in Albury. The use of the furnaces, press and skills of industrial blacksmiths are given to the Tree Project courtesy of Overall Forge. (We will take photos!)

The Community Enterprise Foundation donates $25,000 to the Tree Project. From left: David Wheeler; Director Community Enterprise Foundation, Doug Tarrant; Head Blacksmith & newly-elected President of the Australian Blacksmiths Association (Victoria), Malcolm Hackett; Deputy Chair of Valley Community Financial Services, Cliff Overton; Blacksmith, Ashley Naylor; Blacksmith, Kathryn Naylor; Engineer from Sinclair Knight Merz, Greg George; Blacksmith, Rick Stadler; Blacksmith

Branch Sponsorships

We still need to raise a little bit more funding for installation and site costs and are looking for individuals, businesses or community groups who would like to sponsor a branch of the tree. All our branch sponsors are invited to write a message which will be stamped into the branch.

We would like to thank the individuals and groups who have sponsored a branch recently, among them are Melbourne Mailing, the staff of The 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission, AJC Printing, Marendez Accounting, The Wildhaven Trust, The Eltham Rural Group, The Ulysess Motorcycle Club– Whittlesea Branch and the Jorja and Alexis Davey Memorial Trust. A special mention also to the Cranbrook Gardeners who raised $5000 to go towards materials for the trunk.

Sponsorship for branches varies from $500 to $5,000. If you are interested in supporting the creation of the tree, please download our Sponsorship Proposal at left and become a branch or trunk sponsor.

Your Leaf Image

Except for a few late sponsorships, all of our sponsored leaves have been photographed and an image sent out to every sponsor. If you or someone you know has not received an image of their leaf, please email Amanda at and let her know. A few of our emailed images have bounced and a few of the images did not attach to the email, so we'd appreciate knowing if we haven't reached you so we can get the image of your leaf to you. Thank you to our many leaf sponsors, your support has kept this project running for over two years and enabled us to buy the steel, copper and welding consumables we needed to build the tree.

Blacksmith Love Story

Well, even though we're blacksmiths, we're softies when it comes to a bit of romance. We'd like to congratulate Ashley and Kathryn Naylor on their recent wedding. Ash has been a member of the Australian Blacksmiths Association for many years, some of you will have seen him at our leaf forging demonstrations in 2009 and 2010. Kathryn works for Sinclair Knight Merz; our wonderful engineers who have worked hard to draw up the structural diagrams for the tree in preparation for the heavy forging, assembly and installation.

(We'd really like to say they met on The Tree Project, but they were dating for some time before.) In the midst of sadness and challenging times, it's good to see some love and happiness. Best wishes to the newlyweds from all the supporters of the Tree Project.