Noongar Boodja - Connection to Country
During the negotiations for the Settlement it became apparent that connection to land and lawful access to land was of high importance to the Noongar community.
The following content is from the Kaartdjijin Noongar - Noongar Knowledge website, which is supported by the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council.
"For thousands of years Noongar people have resided on and had cultural connection to the booja – land. Everything in our vast landscape has meaning and purpose. We speak our own language and have our own lore and customs. The lore is characterised by a strong spiritual connection to country. This means caring for the natural environment and for places of significance. Our lore relates to ceremonies, and to rituals for hunting and gathering when food is abundant and in season. Connection to booja is passed on through our stories, art, song and dance. Noongar people not only survived European colonisation but we thrived as family groups and sought to assert our rights to our booja. For Noongar people, the south-west of Western Australia is ngulla booja – our country."
For more information, see the documents listed below.
Valid Land Access
The Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage will administer land access licences, under the Land Administration Act 1997, to the six Noongar Regional Corporations to provide the Noongar people, member(s) of a Noongar Regional Corporation, with lawful access to State owned land for:
- visiting and caring for sites and country
- gathering, preparing and consuming bush tucker
- gathering and preparing and using traditional medicine
- conducting ceremonies and cultural activities
- camping temporarily on country
- lighting camp fires or ceremonial fires
- having meetings on country
The licence does not provide access to certain land including land that is leased, or where public works are underway, land subject to a resource tenement and other conditions. See Annexure O of the ILUAs for the full details, including what activities are not permitted and the obligation of the Noongar Regional Corporations under the licence.