If you want to find someone you dig and quickly weed out any unsuitable candidates, an upcoming singles' bushcare event in Wollongong might be just the thing for you.
The brainchild of Clementina Velasco, the event - which falls just after Valentines Day - is designed for 18 to 35s who want to meet other environmentally-minded people who don't mind getting their hands dirty.
While digging and weeding may not seem terribly romantic, Ms Velasco said she had seen many friendships blossom at her local Gilmore Park Bushcare group.
"Whether it's a romantic setting or a friendship setting, it's a really good way to meet new people," she said.
"Hand weeding is a repetitive and methodical task, so there's something mindful about it and we find people form friendships sitting there in this little pocket with others.
"The kind of people who are attracted to Bushcare will often have quite a few different values in common, and there's something nice about working together as a group to make a difference in our local environment."
Like many people these days, Ms Velasco met her own partner online, thought the singles meet up would have been the perfect date for the early days of their relationship.
"This would have been the kind of thing that both of us would have gone to when we were single, and I think after the COVID lockdown period, people are really looking for those spaces to meet face-to-face and not online," she said.
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"It won't be any awkward speed dating or having to answer any questions, or anything like that, it's just showing people some basic bush regeneration skills and giving them a chance to get out there and meet other people."
Ms Velasco also said she'd been quizzed by people outside the 18-35 age group about a separate event for them and said this may be on the cards.
"But also, that's kind of just general Bushcare! Anyone can go along to their local groups - we are one of 50 across Wollongong - and it's a great way to find these natural spaces in an urban environment," she said.
"There's so many good pockets of bush along our creeks and waterways throughout Wollongong, and people don't really know they're there unless they are right near their house.
"But these are spaces people can easily access and they don't need to go driving for hours or camping in the bush to get to them. And if people have a connection with these local areas, they are more likely to want to look after them."
The working bee will run for two hours on February 18, with details on the event Facebook page.
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