Canning River Knowledge Exchange Event

9th September, 2021

Individuals and organisations recently came together to share their knowledge and experience about working on the Djarlgarro Beelier (Canning River).

Researching and caring for the Djarlgarro Beelier (Canning River) and its tributaries is a significant focus for many groups and individuals including the Noongar community, volunteers, local and state government, universities, and NGOs.  The mid-term milestone of the Swan Canning River Recovery 3 (SCRR3) project, being led by Perth NRM, provided a perfect opportunity to share knowledge, information, and perspectives about work on the Canning and encourage networking across the various organisations.

As the rain poured down outside Sharon Wood-Kenney gave a Welcome to Country and spoke of her connection to the River and special times spent with family on its banks.  We listened intently as Sharon and her colleagues Gail Barrow and Dr. Cristina Ramalho from the University of Western Australia presented their work on the CAUL (The Clean Air and Urban Landscapes Hub) Noongar Water Knowledge in the urban Djarlgarro Beelier catchment.  Over the last 18 months they have worked with Noongar Elders and community members to lead a process of cultural and ecological mapping for the river landscape.  Participants have been invited to share their stories of Djarlgarro Beelier and to put forward ideas on how to heal the catchment’s wetlands and waterways and present ideas that can be used to guide future development.

Including cultural perspectives and First Nation’s voices is also the focus of the new Reconnecting to Rivers catchment project at Blackadder Creek.  Lead by Assoc. Professor Tod Jones and Vanessa Corunna, of Curtin University, the project will contribute to the self-determination of Aboriginal People to heal country by developing an inclusive framework for the conservation of historic river landscapes while incorporating community development.

Together these two culturally focused projects highlighted new opportunities and more comprehensive ways of working for catchment management.

Each of the five presentations detailed threats to our rivers and wetlands but emphasised the conservation efforts of numerous organisations and individuals.  Staff from DBCA gave an extensive update on recent research, monitoring and on-ground projects along the Canning and Southern Rivers, and we heard of the next round of the Community Rivercare Program.

Collaboration across groups reinforced how projects like SCRR3, led by Perth NRM, can be delivered successfully.  Shenaye Hummerston, Perth NRM’s Conservation Program Manager, gave an overview of the 20 individual projects that are supported by SCRR3 before Amy Krupa, CEO SERCUL, spoke about how many organisations worked collectively to create a successful living stream at Nurdi Park.

The benefits of taking time to learn, share and connect will hopefully see these relationships further expanded and strengthened at future SCRR3 events.

This event was delivered as part of the Swan Canning River Recovery State 3 project funded by the Australian Government.  For further information about associated project events please contact Ingrid Sieler, Stakeholder Engagement Manager at [email protected]


We acknowledge and appreciate the support of all our partners, supporters, funding bodies and sponsors.

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