This year, coinciding with National reconciliation Week, NACC is proud to officially be joining the national Reconciliation journey, with the launch of its first Reconciliation Action Plan, ‘Reflect’.
One of four stages, the ‘Reflect’ Reconciliation Action Plan assists organisations like NACC to develop relationships with their Aboriginal community and to build better foundations and connections for cultural learning and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment.
Recognising their role as the first natural resource managers of the land we live and work on today, NACC supports the region’s local Aboriginal communities to care for the country, to ensure it can be enjoyed by everybody, especially our future generations.
“Aboriginal people have been caring for country for hundreds of years, using recycling, sustainable harvesting, water saving techniques and many more natural resource management methods,” said NACC Aboriginal Participation Program Coordinator Bianca McNeair.
“Along with ongoing programs – such as Aboriginal Ranger programs, Return to Country Camps, and delivering workshops such as the Binyaarns Bush Medicine workshop – NACC is celebrating Aboriginal people’s knowledge of caring for country during National Reconciliation Week by inviting the community to join in” she said.
During one special National Reconciliation Week activity, NACC staff met with Traditional Owners at the Chapman River where they shared their stories about living in the region.
Rob, Donna, Dallas and David Ronan, and Vaughan Lane, discussed their knowledge and experience of invasive species in the river with staff from the Batavia Coast Maritime Institute (BCMI). Rob talked about traditional fishing methods of Aboriginal people, and remembered using native plants to scoop-up fish from the rivers’ waters.
Donna elaborated on her memories, remembering the abundance of native species she would see in the river when her family harvested natural produce from the rivers and pools.
Bianca said National Reconciliation Week was a great opportunity for everyone to get out and share stories about traditional ecological knowledge on country.
“Observing the Ronan family share information with Colin and Sam from BCMI was both fascinating and inspiring, and provided new knowledge and connections between scientific research and traditional methods,” Bianca said.
“It also showed just how much more we can learn from each other, and how we can use that information – which will also help empower Traditional Owners – to collectively contribute to caring for country.”