Celebrating Reconciliation Week at Coffs Coast Wildlife Sanctuary


Celebrating Reconciliation Week at Coffs Coast Wildlife Sanctuary

National Reconciliation Week is a pivotal time for all Australians to reflect on our shared histories, cultures, and achievements. It is an opportunity to understand how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia. 

At Coffs Coast Wildlife Sanctuary, we are proud to honour the deep connection between the local Gumbaynggirr country and community, highlighting this relationship through various initiatives and programs. 

One of the most significant aspects of our main presentation is the story of the connection between dolphins and the indigenous heritage of the Gumbaynggirr people. This narrative is not only a celebration of these magnificent creatures but also an homage to the rich cultural heritage of the traditional custodians of the land. Through this storytelling, visitors gain a deeper appreciation of the local indigenous culture and its profound bond with marine life. 

The collaboration between Gumbaynggirr Rangers and the Sanctuary is longstanding and vital. Together, we have worked tirelessly on the rescue and release of local marine animals, a testament to our shared commitment to wildlife conservation. This partnership underscores the importance of traditional knowledge in contemporary environmental practices, demonstrating how the fusion of ancient wisdom and modern science can yield remarkable results. 

Each year, the Gumbaynggirr Rangers bring a group of young indigenous people to the Sanctuary as part of their education about the land and ocean. This initiative not only educates but also empowers the youth, fostering a sense of pride and responsibility towards their heritage and the natural world. 

In our efforts to conserve endangered species, the Sanctuary’s Australian Sea Lion management program has embraced indigenous culture by naming two seals with Gumbaynggirr names. Miri, meaning ‘Stars,’ and Garlambirla, meaning ‘Coffs Harbour,’ serve as living symbols of the connection between our conservation efforts and the local indigenous community. 

Moreover, our partnership with Wajaana Yaam Adventure Tours has been instrumental in supporting our mission for local animal and habitat conservation. Their sponsorship and long-term support highlight the synergy between eco-tourism and wildlife preservation. 

As we observe National Reconciliation Week, we invite everyone to join us at Coffs Coast Wildlife Sanctuary to celebrate and learn more about the rich cultural tapestry that binds us all. Through mutual respect and collaboration, we can pave the way for a more inclusive and reconciled Australia. 

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