The David G. Stead Memorial Wild Life Research Foundation of Australia was established in 1963 as a memorial to David G. Stead - one of Australia's earliest environmentalists.
The Stead Foundation is a project based organisation. It's first and most enduring project is the Wirrimbirra Sanctuary in the NSW Southern Highlands. It is in the area of the first recorded sightings by european settlers of the Lyrebird, Wombat and Koala, over 200 years ago.
The Sanctuary has served many purposes over the last 50 years. A field studies centre, educational activities, research facility, conserving the native Bargo Brush, walking paths through native gardens, wildlife refuge and a peaceful protected area for native animals that are not fit for release into the wild. The Foundation is also one of Wollondilly Shires' longest continuously running businesses with nursery sales of native plants. The Foundation and sanctuary continue to have close ties with the D'harawal Aboriginal people, recognised as traditional custodians of the land.
This legacy continues today, in projects for advocacy, education, heritage and community engagement. We work closely with partners to achieve valuable environmental and community outcomes. The Foundation receives no ongoing funding and relies on grants, donations and bequests to supplement income from accommodation, events and nursery sales.