#NAIDOCWeek series - Turrbal Land (QLD)

We hope you've enjoyed this series so far and have learnt some interesting facts about Australia's First Nations peoples connection to lands.

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We hope you've enjoyed this series so far and have learnt some interesting facts about Australia's First Nations peoples connection to lands. As you may have gathered by now, lands across Australia are unique in their own regard and are related to all aspects of existence, culture, spirituality, language, law and identity for our First Nations peoples.

Rather than owning land, each person belongs to a piece of land which forms as part of their belonging and because of this close connection, Australia's First Nations peoples have been responsible for maintaining their lands.

When non-Indigenous people begin to decompose the importance of land for Indigenous people, we can begin to understand why dislocation from land continues to have devastating effects on their people and cultures.

For our final piece of content, we'll be looking at the traditional land our colleagues in Queensland operate on known as Turrbal – the home of lush rainforests like the Daintree.

The Daintree is the where the Great Barrier reef meets the world's oldest surviving rainforest. It is considered the heart and soul of Australia's wet tropics. While this green getaway had only been discovered by European settlers in 1873, it had been long occupied by Eastern Kulu Yalanji people for over 50,000 years.

They were able to understand and adapt to the association between weather cycles and types of vegetation which provided them with food throughout the year. The Daintree also provided them with shelter as they lived on small camps scattered along the banks of creeks and rivers and natural sources of medicine to treat illnesses.

There are still over 20,000 people with ongoing connections to the wet tropics but the settlement of privately-owned allotments within the Daintree is escalating which has led to a loss of habitat.

Initiatives that have helped address this include Arbor Day which is nationally observed at the end of April. The special day raises awareness to the important role trees play preserving our natural environment, and with it the stories and practices central to our First Nations peoples.​

You can also help #HealCountry by contacting your local shire or the natural resource management groups below:

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