I’m just back from the declaration ceremony of the Yanyuwa Indigenous Protected Area near Borroloola on the Northern Territory side of the Gulf of Carpentaria. It was a powerful event.
The community was out in force including local school children and their teachers. Indigenous Health Minister Warren Snowdon, Northern Territory Environment Minister Karl Hampton and Indigenous Development Minister Malarndirri McCarthy also attended, giving heartfelt speeches to mark the occasion.
The 130,000 hectare Yanyuwa Indigenous Protected Area protects ancient land running alongside the magnificent McArthur River to five stunning Sir Edward Pellew islands, home to threatened dugong and turtles which are culturally significant to the Yanyuwa.
For the Yanyuwa people, this declaration seems to be an important part of their land rights struggle; Yanyuwa Indigenous Protected Area is symbolic of getting back onto country after winning it back.
The visitors present were testimony to the wide array of meaningful partnerships the ranger program has developed with various research and management agencies.
I felt very privileged to be involved.
Indigenous Protected Areas team