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MJOC Volunteer Projects

MJOC Volunteer Projects

Our club has been involved ion many volunteer activities since the very early years of the club. We have been involved in bushfire relief with Blaze Aid and many track clearing and bush clean ups activities supporting Four Wheel Drive Victoria and Government Land managers such as Parks Victoria and DELWP.

Activities have included -

  • Emergency relief for farmers delivering water and supplies
  • Fence rebuilding with Blaze Aid
  • Community assistance at Narbieview Wildlife Shelter
  • Track Clearing
  • Bush Clean Ups
  • Fire damage rubbish cleanup and community work
  • Many other bushfire relief activities.

We continue to do volunteer work in rural communities. Please contact us if you are aware of any activities we could be involved with.

Member Involvement

Members are encouraged to get involved with our Volunteer Projects team.

Our team is lead by Rob Sharp who coordinates ant volunteer or stewardship activities. Over recent years our Volunteer Projects team have built and equipped a trailer with assistance from the club. This trailer is equipped and ready to go when the call comes for assistance.

Our volunteer hours are recorded and become part of the massive volunteer work that many other four wheel drive clubs are involved with through Four Wheel Drive Victoria. Our volunteer hours contributed to aver 16,000 volunteer hours that FWDV clubs completed in the last 2 years.

To get involved you can register on any events here

Volunteer Projects


Narbeview Wildlife Shelter

The Narbieview Wildlife Shelter at Buxton is a not for profit self funded wildlife shelter on the Maroondah Hwy at Buxton in Victoria and the Melbourne jeep Owners Club are proud to be involved in supporting the shelter with working bees and fundraising.

The club regularly has volunteer members visiting the shelter to help with cleaning, feeding and maintenance. Visit the Narbieview Wildlife Shelter website for more details, help is welcome at any time.

Narbeview Website

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High Country Huts Program
High Country Huts Program


Since 2016 – in conjunction with the Victorian High Country Huts Association and DELWP, MJOC has been maintaining Keppel’s Hut near Marysville – we have been doing 6 to 12 month visits to, cut grass, fill the wood bin, lime the toilet and clean and stock the hut itself. So now we manage Keppel’s hut, 15 Mile Hut and Ryan’s Spur Hut. These are all in the Marysville hut zone and the only ones left due to others being destroyed by vandals or fire.

Planning and Donations

After Approaching Victorian High Country Huts, they have assisted in us getting approval to maintain 15 mile hut and try and make it as usable as Keppel’s Hut. So after a lengthy approval process we got approval to fix 15 mile hut and add a camping area to the front of the hut.

After discussion with Wayne Peterken from Victorian High Country Huts. The Sub-committee went about looking at options. After presenting at club meeting it was clear that MJOC were up for the challenge of Hut Maintenance. The club allocate $1000 this year to help maintain, many other members volunteered time and resources.

So the sub-committee would like to thank the following people who donated resources to the 15 Mile Hut restoration:

  • Robert Frew – who donated tin and nails
  • Kathryn Marmara- Stewart – for water donation
  • Ross Daws – for Refreshments during construction
  • David Chudasko – for over 1000 Nails, pots and pans.
  • Ronald Maskell– for tin sheets, broom, fire metals and cleaning equipment
  • Peter Sharp – for a new fireplace, concrete and Tools
  • Robert Sharp – for supplying lunch both days, bracing and nails.
  • MJOC for supplying – $500 for timber, nails and other building supplies.
  • Jim Hutchinson – for the bringing all the tools and concrete.
  • Andrew Panozzo – for Tools, Concrete and Sleepers.
  • Ross Kaigg – for Tools and equipment.
  • Frank De Angelis – for donation of parking signs.

Reconstruction and Camping

Friday night Ronnie Maskell and Kyle Mackechnie camped up at Big river camping ground, it happened to get over 20mm of rain, sleet and snow. The rest of the crew meet up at Beechworth Bakery on Saturday morning and meet them up at Camp at 9am. The

Saturday crew consisted of:

  • Robert Sharp
  • Kathryn Marmara- Stewart
  • Peter Sharp (registered Builder)
  • Jim Hutchinson
  • Ross Kraigg and Kathy
  • Greg Lawson
  • Andrew Panozzo
  • Ronnie Maskell
  • Kyle Mackecknie
  • Ross Daws – came prepared with Coffee machine

After getting to the Hut at approx. 10.15 the team split up into group by the end of the day we had;

  • Raise the roof of the hut – this was done by inch by inch raising it up 1.3 metres
  • Made an outside fire pit
  • Made steps down to the river
  • Cleared Drains and filled mud holes
  • Cut fire wood
  • Made bench seats for outdoor area

This was all achieved in the rain, hail and snow so well done for all braving the weather and achieving so much

Saturday night camping was enjoyed by a few brave souls as the rain didn’t ease up until 9am the next morning.

Sunday morning we had the following additional people turn up camp.

  • John Metcalf – and his wiper sniper
  • Michael Haworth with Tyler and Logan Haworth
  • Together with Robert, Kathryn, Jim, Kyle, Ronnie, Ross and Kathy we all headed to the hut and got there to be meet by Shez and Warren – our HMO (Huts Maintenance Officer) from High Country Huts.

Again we split up into groups and completed the following:

  • Blocked Road off to make camping area in front of hut
  • Completed drainage in front of hut
  • Put in 4 bollards to mark out the camping area and attach signage
  • Concreted in camping seats
  • Cut and cleaned up garden around the hut – including clearing car park area
  • Made and filled fire bin – approx. 1 cubic metre bin
  • Cleaned up inside hut – benches, sink, fireplace, floor
  • Left water, food, cleaning gear and cooking pots &utensils
  • Put in visitors book with pen in waterproof satchel
  • Re hinged front door
  • Made sleeper floor at entrance of hut – 6 sleeper wide
  • Finalised inside roof with cross beams
  • Completed ridge cap on roof
  • Cleaned out fireplace and added new fireplace and utensils
  • Stabilised outside walls and added posts for future stabilising


So we now have a weatherproof hut and a great camping area around the 15 mile hut.

The satisfaction and reward for effort in doing this will change our club in many ways, in least we now are recognised as a community contributor within key authorities including, 4wd Victoria, Victorian High Country Huts Association and government DELWP.

The hut committee hope that our club also bases trips from our huts and use then for base camp.

A big thank you to the club for being the main financial contributor to this project without those funds it could not happened.

Thank you to everyone who came to help – we made a great team and have achieved so much.

Look forward to finishing 15 mile hut and making even better.

MJOC Huts Committee

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15 Mile Hut Restoration
15 Mile Hut Restoration


Located just off 15 Mile Rd beside the very picturesque Toponga river in the Big River region.It is believed that 15 Mile Hut is approximately 20 years old, although this is not confirmed.

In the early years the hut was named Bongs or Marcs Hut. Those who did the early restoring made it fun by adding signs such as ”Beware of the Crocs” and “no diving” near the creek. Inside they continued the fun with a fake chandelier and a light switch attached to an outside pole.

The original construction was tin outer walls. The fire place was stone ,with bricks on the outside and a flu which looks fairly new. The fire place needed work to save it from collapsing. The hut had an old sink, bench and the floor was just dirt. The front façade was a combination of rough tin and timber giving it a very rustic appeal.

The hut was spared damage or worse from the bush fires in 2009. Later that year restoration /repair work was carried out by person’s unknown although names carved into a large piece of wood with the name “15 Mile Hut” above the front verandah may be the indication of who restored the hut. It is unclear exactly what work was done or when the hut was renamed 15-mile Hut. The outer verandas at the front and right hand side were possibly part of the changes made going by earlier photos. In recent years, the hut had again fallen victim to the elements. The roof had begun to collapse due to a tree falling across the roof and the outer walls, chimney, fire place and support beams were all in a state of disrepair. The hut was in danger of collapse and the issue of safety was a major concern. If volunteers could not be found this hut would be demolished or collapse, either way it would be a shame to see the hut gone forever. Its remoteness is part of its charm and in bad weather this hut would be just as important as one with historical significance, in saving a life.

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15 Mile Hut Verandah Rebuild
15 Mile Hut Verandah Rebuild

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We acknowledge and respect Victorian Traditional Owners as the original custodians of Victoria’s land and waters, their unique ability to care for Country and deep spiritual connection to it. We honour Elders past, present and emerging, whose knowledge and wisdom has ensured the continuation of culture and traditional practices.