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13 Jul 2010
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The NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) of the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water are currently reviewing the Plans of Management (PoM) for Blue Mountains, Wollemi and Kanangra-Boyd National Parks.

The Planning Officer from Blue Mountains Region is responsible for preparing these Plans. Capturing Aboriginal Cultural values held for these reserves is a key component within the PoM process.

The World Heritage Unit for the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area was approached to assist in liaison and facilitation with the Aboriginal people and communities who hold a cultural association with Country of the three National Parks.

The formal consultation process began in 2009 and a workshop was conducted at the Living Country Culture Camp along with the distribution of a questionnaire to Aboriginal people in seeking their cultural values of Country.

The use of PLACESTORIES software developed by Feral Arts was seen as a possible alternative to more familiar methods such as workshops, surveys, questionnaires or interviews. A two day training course in the use of this software was organized for interested members of the Aboriginal community and selected staff members of NSW NPWS.

The most appealing aspect of this form of storytelling and expression of cultural values is that Aboriginal people can ultimately retain or share these values using customized options.

The challenge remains in convincing Indigenous Communities that Information Technology and software programs such as PLACESTORIES can help them to record, protect, own and or share their cultural knowledge and values of Country.

Community Environment Indigenous Aboriginal Co-management culture environment heritage indigenous personal stories
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