Traditional Owner knowledge was shared among land managers in a Cultural Burning workshop held on Kabi Kabi Country at a Sunshine Coast Council environment reserve near Kenilworth recently.
Representatives from Kabi Kabi and Jinibara Traditional Owners; Indigenous Rangers from across south east Queensland including Butchulla, Bunya Bunya, Wirrinyah and Gidargil Traditional Owners; and council officers attended the workshop facilitated by the Firesticks Alliance Indigenous Corporation onsite at Tuan Environmental Reserve, Kenilworth.
Firesticks Alliance is an Indigenous-led network that aims to re-invigorate the use of cultural burning by facilitating cultural learning pathways to fire and land management.
Leeton Lee from Firesticks Alliance Indigenous Corporation said the initiative aimed for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people to look after Country, share their experiences and collectively explore ways to achieve their goals.
“Firesticks ultimately strives to empower Aboriginal communities to manage their own cultural lands and work strongly with non-Indigenous people to achieve functional and resilient landscapes,” Mr Lee said. “Throughout the workshop we shared knowledge, local conditions and cultural knowledge relevant to the burn – and undertook a burn at Tuan Environment Reserve as a real-life learning example.”
Sunshine Coast Council Community Portfolio and Division 10 Councillor David Law said council aimed to support Kabi Kabi and Jinibara Traditional Owners to apply their Traditional knowledge into the ongoing management of the region’s bushland.
“Our goal was to promote shared learning opportunities led by the local Kabi Kabi and Jinibara Traditional Owners and facilitated by Firesticks Alliance, while educating council staff and other fire practitioners about traditional fire management and the benefits to local ecosystem health and how it can be incorporated into their ongoing practice,” Cr Law said.
“And ultimately our overall aim is to improve biodiversity and restore the bush to good health.
“We thank Firesticks Alliance for facilitating the workshop and the local Kabi Kabi and Jinibara Traditional Owners for sharing their knowledge and we hope to continue to work with Traditional Owners to further build capacity and heal the land through cultural fire management practices.”
This project is supported by the Australian Government’s Bushfire Recovery Package for wildlife and their habitat.
About Tuan Reserve
The Tuan reserve is a 200ha site located in the Mary River Catchment. The site was acquired through Council’s Environment Levy to support a broader plan to build a wildlife corridor that connects the Kondalilla National Park to the Conondale National Park – a great example of Council’s commitment to protecting, preserving and enhancing our natural environment. The name ‘Tuan’ is one of the Indigenous names for the brush-tailed phascogale, an iconic species found on the reserve.