Website to promote Aboriginal land management

An interactive website show casing the land management practices Aboriginal people have carried out in the Wheatbelt will be officially launched in Northam on Thursday, March 20 2014.

The online tool features short films and interviews about Noongar land management projects recorded over the past five years.

The website was designed by natural resource management group Wheatbelt NRM with the intention that management of the site be taken on by the Aboriginal community.

Wheatbelt NRM’s Aboriginal NRM Facilitator Kerry Horan said the website highlighted a range of projects such as the use of fire to enhance biodiversity and the preservation of significant cultural sites.

“One story that is featured is about the clean-up of a ngamma or rock hole at Derbidin, near Wyalkatchem,” Kerry Horan said.

“These ngammas are important to Aboriginal people as they provided an important source of water during the dry season and as meeting places for Aboriginal people to socialise, share information and trade goods.

“The ngamma are also important to the environment as they provide fresh water for wildlife.

“The ngamma also feature prominently in the Nyitting (Noongar word for dreaming) for Aboriginal people throughout Australia.”

Six stories are already featured on the site and the website will undergo further development over the next five years with another 15 stories and projects to be recorded.

“We also see this website as a learning tool for school students, and for use by the Noongar people as traditional owners of the Wheatbelt,” Kerry Horan said.

“The Noongar people have a great responsibility to look after country and we see this project as enhancing opportunities for them to access and work on country.

“The website will demonstrate how Aboriginal people can develop a dialogue with local communities and reduce the perceived threat of land being taken away from non-Aboriginal landholders.”

Funding for the project is through the Australian government.

The website can be found at http://www.moorditjboodjar.com.au/

For further information conctact Kerry Horan, Wheatbelt NRM on 9670 3100.