Reconnecting to Country project

Article image - Reconnecting to Country project Reconnecting To Country Project Walk, Aboriginal Presenter David King at Wentworth Falls, September 2009

Blue Mountains City Council has received a total of $1 million in grant funding from the New South Wales Environmental Trust Urban Sustainability Program for a ‘sister city’ type relationship linking two water catchments and two local Aboriginal communities.

The ‘Reconnecting to Country’ project is a partnership between Blue Mountains City Council, The Gully Traditional Owners, Rous Water and the Widjabul people from the Northern Rivers, with each group mentoring the other in respective areas of expertise.

The Blue Mountains component of the project will involve:

  • community engagement and education, including creating an interpretative walk to tell the story of The Gully Community
  • development of cultural interpretation sites
  • implementing a cross cultural training program
  • environmental improvement works.

With Council and The Gully Traditional Owners working in partnership, the ‘Reconnecting to Country’ project is a positive example of working together to ensure that The Gully is managed in such a way that respects, conserves and maintains the Aboriginal values.

The Gully is a declared Aboriginal Place in the Kedumba Creek Catchment, Katoomba, Blue Mountains. The land and water restoration projects in The Gully integrate with local Aboriginal Culture and land management practices.

Local residents and Bushcarers are already enjoying the ‘Reconnecting to Country Conversations’ - a series of walks and talks with local Aboriginal people.

For more information on the project, please contact Elly Chatfield, Council’s Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Officer (Reconnecting to Country Project) on (02) 4780 5726 or email echatfield@bmcc.nsw.gov.au