Culture & Community

Culture & Community

At South Coast NRM, we work to support, empower and enrich our community, so that they can achieve their aspirations and contribute to the overall management of the region’s natural resources. We support dedicated bands of volunteers, citizen scientists, farming groups and soil health champions, Aboriginal leaders and their communities, sustainability advocates and individuals with a commitment to natural resource management across the region.

We build NRM awareness and relevant skills across the region and act as a knowledge and information hub for all things related to natural resource management. We do this through workshops, field days, facilitation, educational seminars, training sessions and events.

Education plays an important role in this Program and we are heavily involved with schools and other educational organisations to promote sustainable living and caring for our environment.  School vacation programs are an integral part of our activities and we are teaching the next generation through engaging and fun activities.

The South Coast region has a rich Aboriginal cultural heritage with many recognised sites of importance to local Aboriginal people.  In 2014 there were 307 sites of significance across the region registered with the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and protected through the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972.   South Coast NRM has been involved with the preparation of management plans and cultural heritage surveys through the Restoring Connections and Cultural Connections projects in partnership with the Aboriginal community and land managers.


  • RESTROING NOONGAR BOODJA – by respecting, recording, applying and sharing Noongar knowledge in NRM

    Three integrated and time critical projects pioneer a forward-thinking approach to effectively managing and protecting our internationally recognised rich biodiversity and ancient landscapes. They have been developed in close consultation with the Aboriginal community and partner groups from across the South Coast.

    The Noongar community will pursue caring for country (Boodja) using traditional ecological knowledge while restoring and protecting culturally significant locations. These projects will build capacity and capability for Aboriginal people to be key participants in caring for country projects alongside scientists and NRM practitioners .

    Lotterywest is a major supporter of Restoring Noongar Boodja

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  • MERINJ KAARTDIJIN – Aboriginal Food Knowledge Forum

    The Merinj Kaartdijin – Aboriginal Food Knowledge Forum was held on Friday 22 and Saturday 23 November at the Albany Entertainment Centre with over 100 people attending over the two days from across the State.

    Attendees heard from local, national and internationally recognised experts about the common ground created by sharing bush foods, as well as the complexities of managing traditional cultural knowledge, protecting intellectual property and growing local native plants.

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  • ABORIGINAL ENGAGEMENT:  Strong & Proud Program

    The Strong & Proud program, Wumbudin-koul-yee-rah, provides Aboriginal youth between the ages of 12-17 years old with alternative activities that connect them to their culture and country.  Its aim is to build self-esteem, identity, cultural awareness, community connection, wellbeing and healthy lifestyle benefits, as well as improved school attendance.

    The program is developed around the six Noongar seasons and locations where Aboriginal people would have traditionally moved. This provides a focus for each semester and provides active outdoor sport and reaction, environmental and cultural activities that build self-esteem and teamwork skills.

    The program is led by the Cultural Team at South Coast Natural Resource Management Inc., Albany, WA in partnership with Indigenous and educational organisations.


    Albany Heritage Reference Group Aboriginal Corporation (AHRGAC), family members met at the Lake Pleasant View on 2nd December to discuss future planning and management of the property. This was a key starting point for the delivery of the Restoring Lake Pleasant View project funded by Lotterywest.

    Key aims of the project are to protect and restore this Aboriginal owned property, with substantial cultural heritage and biodiversity values. This three year project will assess the remedial environmental works that have been undertaken to date and will confirm cultural, environmental and developmental management goals now possible since ownership of the Lake Pleasant View property has been secured.

     In 2018 the land title to Lake Pleasant View was officially handed over from the ILC to the Albany Heritage Reference Group Aboriginal Corporation.  The AHRGAC now hold ownership of the property through Freehold Title and the current project will allow the Noongar community to actively progress the more significant elements of a development vision first articulated back in 2006. Through consultation with the AHRGAC Noongar community this project will revisit the Cultural Heritage Management Plan Lake Pleasant View (2009) which was produced to protect and restore the significant Lake Pleasant View property and make it available for the Noongar community to use as an educational resource and meeting place for Menang people.

    Greenman Media Productions were engaged to capture and document footage of the day.

  • ABORIGINAL ENGAGEMENT –  Noongar family field days

    South Coast NRM facilitates information exchange and relationship building through Noongar family field trips.

    We take Noongar families (Elders, men, women and children) out on country with Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) rangers and scientists to share traditional knowledge and mainstream western science and land management methods.

    This is a valuable strategy to build relationships with the Noongar community leading up to joint management.

    WARNING:.This video may include images of people who have since passed away.

     Noongar family field day video

  • RESTORING CONNECTIONS –  between People and Land

    The Restoring Connections Between People and Land Project is a community driven initiative working with Noongar communities across the South Coast region of Western Australia to identify, protect and restore cultural places at risk of degradation.

    Supported by local Elders, the project develops and implements a range of natural resource management (NRM) and heritage projects which help to build and strengthen community skills. The project additionally links Elders and youth and strengthens traditional connection to country and knowledge of NRM.

    The project supports the restoration and protection of highly significant cultural sites. The training provided through these projects builds community capacity for future NRM work and enables Aboriginal people involved in the project to obtain work in the area. It also engages several local schools, catchment groups and conservation organisations, providing Noongar people with opportunities to share stores and educate new audiences on a range of traditional activities.

    The Restoring Connections Between People and Land Project won the Indigenous award at the 2010 National Landcare Awards.

    Restoring Connections Community engagement: For generations of Noongars, Paddy Coyne’s Camp in Serpentine Road was an important meeting place.

    Former Aboriginal campsite given new lease of life


    We run a full range of educational workshops and activities to provide information, knowledge and support to our communities.

    To support community development we run a range of workshops and courses to train individuals and regional organisations in corporate management skills such as governance, community engagement, social media and marketing and well as providing in depth workshops on natural resource management principles and practice.

    We work with schools and other education facilities to engage with youth on important natural resource management issues for our region such as intertidal zones and marine debris, landcare and biodiversity.