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Organisation: University of Technology Sydney
Name: Jacqueline Gothe
E-Mail: Jacqueline.Gothe@uts.edu.au
Category: Sustainability

Name of Project: Firesticks

Description of Project: Firesticks an Indigenous-led community of practice initiated in Cape York Australia aims to bring attention, recognition and support for the implementation of cultural burning practices in contemporary land management to enhance cultural and ecological resilience. Aboriginal Australiaís pre-colonial landscape and culture has been shaped by fire to great success. The absence of Aboriginal cultural burning practices in contemporary land management contributes to an increase in the intensity and frequency of bush fires, threatens increasingly endangered flora and fauna species and harms cultural heritage. In 2013 Firesticks received funding from the Australian Government for the Firesticks Project: Applying contemporary and Aboriginal fire practices to enhance biodiversity, connectivity and landscape resilience. This project is implemented through the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales working with partners on Aboriginal lands - Ngulingah, Ngunyah-Jargoon, Minyumai, Casino-Boolangle, Gugin Guddaba, Tarriwa- Kurrukun, Wattleridge, Willows-Boorabee - in Northern New South Wales Australia. Alongside the on-ground works the grant provides support for the development of information and communication design for educational resources. The design team Jacqueline Gothe, Lyndal Harris, Mitra Gusheh and Clement Girault at the University of Technology Sydney are working with Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales and the Aboriginal property partners establishing participatory approaches for information and communication design requirements of the project. Initial processes include workshops and discussions with partners and mentors resulting in the articulation of the guiding principles of responsibility, respect and recognition for the Firesticks community of practice. Ongoing consultation with partners for template design, facilitation and production of fire plans; template designs and production support for communication of project progress; video support; and training for web content and management. The information and communication design approach and outcomes produced to this stage are the foundation for the design of the educational resources for the Firesticks project.

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