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Friday, 11 November 2011

Hosting Planners, Land Use Planning, and Securing Role within Land Use Plans

Bana Yarralji has just this week co-authored a proposed article for the Queensland Planner (December edition) entitled "On the Ground - Planning on Eastern Kuku Yalanji Country" in which Nyungkalwarra Country (in the northern most portion of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area) was described as follows:
[It].. is a rich bioculturally diverse landscape interwoven with extensive networks of Aboriginal 'highways' that were once heavily used (MacCracken 1989), filled with large numbers of living areas that were once densely occupied (Horsfall & Hall 1990). 
A rough map of this Nyungkalwarra country (courtesy of CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences) at the core of which the Bana Yarralji ranger base sits, within which Bana Yarralji wishes to host whole range of activites bringing work, employment, and cultural dividends to Nyungkalwarra families  is copied below (ie gives general sense of how busy the landscape is with Aboriginal estates, plus sense of proportion of extent of proposed Aboriginal freehold - pink, extent of proposed Aboriginal nature refuge - yellow, and proposed new National Park - lighter green):

The Queensland Planner article in which Nyungkalwarra Country is described as a cultural landscape arises out of cultural entreprenuer (Marilyn Wallace) and Bana Yarralji's efforts to:

i.   partner with James Cook University's School of Earth and Environmental Sciences to encourage the Australian Institute of Planning to certify a proposed remote indigenous community planning course for up and coming town planners, and

ii.  partner with James Cook University's School of Earth and Environmental Sciences to see up and comming town planners undertake indigenous community field work in Nyungkalwarra Country, hosted by Bana Yarralji (of course!)

Marilyn Wallace was a sole Aboriginal voice addressing a workshop of the Planning Institute of Australia, in Cairns, on Friday, 19 August 2011 and, while the Planning Institute of Australia itself may not have been ready to see emerging planners undertaking coursework in the field working with Aboriginal groups like Bana Yarralji, the editor of the Queensland Planner was sufficiently inspired as to produce an edition of the Queensland Planner all about the whole field, and strong social justice need for indigenous community planning expertise and training.

In the meantime:

i.   Over the September 10 & 11 2011 weekend, Bana Yarralji Working on Country provided some assistance hosting a meeting of Nyungkalwarra Elders up on Country plus CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences  Dr Ro Hill, to complete drafting of a Caring for Kuku Nyungkal Country Indigenous Protected Area Plan for future management of nature refuges and new National Parks which will very soon encircle the Bana Yarralji ranger/ cultural enterprise base

ii.  Also next weekend (Saturday 19 November 2011) Bana Yarralji has assembled legal representation from P&E law, additional legal support (probono) from Norton Rose, plus policy advice from the Cape York Institute and Balkanu Caring for Country Unit   .. [quite an effort!!] ... to meet with the Aboriginal land trust (Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation) plus Cape York Land Council legal representatives and barristers ..

...where  it is hoped everyone will finally start digging, together, through that complex quagmire of Aboriginal Lore and Australian Law to jointly reveal viable Aboriginal land leasing options, with which to secure Bana Yarralji's assets, place, and role on country .. plus enable Bana Yarralji Cultural Enterprise to obtain tenure sufficient to raise funds and conduct business (ie a cultural enterprise running from Country, being a cultural enterprise hoping to generate cultural divendends for all Nyungkalwarra wishing to live and make a living on Country)

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Cultural entreprenuers moving onto country, building a base on country, working on country; caring for country, and hosting guests on country