Bringing the bush to Adelaide

By Alinytjara Wilurara Natural Resource Management

Driven by love of country and culture, and the desire for a better future for the young people living on their homelands, members of the all-Aboriginal Alinytjara Wilurara Natural Resource Management Board sought to find a way to share their world with the wider South Australian community.

This shared desire led to the Board opening its doors in March 2018 to the “Adelaide Meets the Bush” exhibition, where it has succeeded beyond expectations in bringing together the people of Adelaide and the people and country of the Alinytjara Wilurara (AW) Region.

AW NRM board members Debbie Hansen (left) from Tjuntjuntjara Community and Mima Smart (centre) from Yalata, with Natural Resources Alinytjara Wilurara’s regional director Mary-Anne Healy at the launch of the Adelaide Meets The Bush exhibition.

The AW NRM Region extends from the Northern Territory border to the southern coast and from the Western Australian border across to Coober Pedy in South Australia, spanning more than a quarter of a million square kilometres. In Pitjantjatjara, alinytjara means ‘north’ and wilurara means ‘west’. The Region has a population of approximately 3,000 people, the majority of whom identify with the Pitjantjatjara, Yankunytjatjara, Ngaanyatjarra, Kokatha, Mirning or Wirangu people.

The on-ground work the Board supports takes place out of sight of the public eye on vast, remote and spectacular lands. Owned or managed by the traditional owners, the country abounds with many unique creatures and plants adapted to survive the harsh, arid environment.

The exhibition at Tandanya National Aboriginal Cultural Institute presents interpretations of the region’s people, country and water, through art, photography and video.

Board member Mima Smart OA explains, “The Adelaide meets the Bush exhibition is our way of inviting people to our region, to let them see the beauty there, to let them see what we are doing to help our country and our people, and to understand our dreams for the future. We want to build new friendships and partnerships and forge better prospects for us all,” she said.

The exhibition is presented in partnership with the Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges NRM Board. Both boards are committed to developing a range of on-going engagement strategies under the Adelaide meets the Bush banner that will be delivered across both regions.

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