Get inspired and get involved in ‘Working Together’ to heal country. Listen in to this episode, Part 1, of a two-part great conversation with Craig Aspinall, who is the Community Aboriginal Engagement Officer, with Landcare NSW. It’s an Australian first in the Landcare movement and not before time!
Craig leads Landcare NSWs forward looking Working Together program that is all about empowering Aboriginal people to help lead and deliver Landcare projects in NSW and to support and encourage existing Landcare groups and participants to have the confidence and skills to reach out, engage and collaborate with local Aboriginal people to care for country via Landcare.
Craig, is an inspiring, can do person with a huge depth of knowledge and experience. Craig is an Aboriginal man from the Birpai nation on the lower north coast of NSW who has devoted his private and working life to the natural and cultural values associated with land and sea country. In addition to the change-making work he does with Landcare NSW, he’s also a Director of OceanWatch (since 2005) and is passionate about the work OceanWatch does – it’s one of the 56 NRM regions in Australia but is the only marine focused resource management organisations, responsible for enhancing fish habitats and the marine environment.
What we do on the land has a huge impact on the health of our oceans and marine biodiversity. In this Episode, I speak with Craig about his work as the NSW Community Landcare Aboriginal Engagement Officer with NSW Landcare and the exciting – really important – “Working Together” Aboriginal Communities Engagement Program that he leads.
Craig spoke at the recent Landcare Australia National Conference about the program, and the title of his talk was “Breaking the Barriers Between Landcare in NSW and First Nations Peoples: Recognition, Value, Collaboration”. It’s all about building relationships and partnerships that we all need now to heal country, better, together and is very much in the spirit of NAIDOC 2021’s theme: Heal Country! The NAIDOC 2021 theme – Heal Country! – calls for all of us to continue to seek greater protections for our lands, our waters, our sacred sites and our cultural heritage from exploitation, desecration, and destruction. Country that is more than a place and inherent to identity.
I loved meeting and talking with Craig – reckon you will to.
NSW Landcare, Working Together program: https://landcarensw.org.au/projects/aboriginal-communities-engagement-program/