Restoring Aboriginal cultural sites

Canberra’s Umbagong District Park has a high Aboriginal significance due to the presence of axe grinding grooves. The area also is home to numerous native flora and fauna species that are significant to the Ngunawal people.

According to Ngunawal elder and Director of the Mullangang Traditional Aboriginal Landcare Group, Wally Bell, “Ginninderra Creek, which flows into the Murrumbidgee River, was an ancient pathway for Aboriginal people and is still important to our people today.” In 2016, Wally won the Indigenous Land Management Award at the National Landcare Awards.

Lockheed Martin Australia has partnered with Landcare Australia to support the restoration of important Aboriginal cultural sites in the Canberra region like Umbagong District Park.

To maintain and restore the area surrounding the axe-grinding grooves at the park, the Ginninderra Catchment Group is working with Mullangang Traditional Aboriginal Landcare Group, the Umbagong Landcare Group, and MacGregor Landcare Group

Volunteers are working to improve the water quality of Ginninderra Creek and enhance culturally significant sites by controlling emerging weeds along the creek and by undertaking instream and riparian planting.

Vince Di Pietro AM CSC, Chief Executive of Lockheed Martin Australia recently visited the site for a tour and overview by Wally Bell and Karissa Preuss, Coordinator of the Ginninderra Catchment Group.

He said, “We are proud to contribute to this community project which very much aligns with our own Go Green Program to reduce carbon emissions, energy and water use and waste to landfill.”

Karissa Preuss commented, “There is strong community demand for information about Aboriginal heritage of the ACT region. This project will go some way towards meeting the demand by offering short interpretive walks, led by local Ngunawal custodians, in association with each of the on-ground restoration events.”

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