Sea country management and the Traditional Use of Marine Resources Agreement program in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park was the focus when representatives from 10 Traditional Owner regions converged on Magnetic Island this week.
Run by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, the three-day workshop brought together nine groups with formal Traditional Use of Marine Resource Agreements in place and one aspiring group.
These agreements describe how Great Barrier Reef Traditional Owners work with government agencies to manage traditional use activities on their sea country, under their Traditional Lores and Customs.
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority policy and planning director Belinda Jago said it was an excellent opportunity for Traditional Owners to share information amongst the groups and with government.
“For thousands of years Traditional Owners have cared for the Reef and they are key partners in managing this great natural icon,” she said.
“It was fantastic to bring together Traditional Owners from throughout the Reef to discuss sea country management and the Traditional Use of Marine Resources Agreement program.
“There was also discussion about Reef health and Marine Park compliance, and how Traditional Owners are involved in management of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
“Traditional Owners are actively caring for their sea country and it was a privilege to hear about the great many actions that Traditional Owners are undertaking to support the resilience of the Reef.”
Banjin Traditional Owner and Girringun TUMRA Coordinator Joyce Wallis said everyone who took part in the workshop had an opportunity to learn from one another, discuss management of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and ways to improve sea country programs, and create new networks or partnerships.
“The TUMRA Workshop on Magnetic Island last week was a great opportunity for Traditional Owners to share ideas on programs that are being delivered and ways to improve communication with our government partners and the community,” Mrs Wallis said.
Representatives from the Wuthathi, Lama Lama, Yuku-Baja-Muliku, Yirrganydji, Gunggandji, Mandubarra, Girringun, Woppaburra and Port Curtis Coral Coast groups took part in the event.
Also attending were representatives from the Hopevale Congress, who are in the process of developing a formal sea country agreement.
There are approximately 70 Traditional Owner clan groups whose sea country includes the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Traditional Owners, acknowledging their continuing connections to the Great Barrier Reef region.
Interviews and photos/vision:
Photos from the event are available on request. Please contact us for more details.
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority
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