Barapa Land and Water is a cultural heritage, land and water management Aboriginal enterprise based in Bendigo, Victoria, servicing Barapa Barapa Country (Gannawarra/Loddon Shire) area. We are incredibly proud to be an 100% Aboriginal owned and operated not for profit sole trader. We are a business for cultural preservation along with employment, training, and education for Barapa Barapa people.
Our work focuses on the traditional lands of the Barapa Barapa people, land and water management. We have been working with land managers, Parks Vic, DELWP, Shires and Private individuals and companies to perform services such as pest and civil works, pest weed and animal control, fencing, revegetation and cultural heritage preservation. The traditional lands of the Barapa people extend from the Gunbower Forest down the Murray River towards Swan Hill and include the towns of Kerang and Koondrook.
Initially Barapa Land & Water started out with a focus on traditional cultural works, consisting of site identification and some land management projects. With increased interest and expanded capabilities we have been able to extend our range of works. Barapa Land & Water now primarily work on private contracts, civil works and perform a more general "Land Management" role.
One of the more recent focuses of the team has been on cultural burns. Following the disastrous bushfires of 2019 and 2020 we want to ensure this practice is accessible to all land managers in order to ensure that they are able to manage the land with traditional fire practices. The use of these practices is a way of protecting assets, preparing for fire season, supporting the revegetation of damaged areas and encouraging native growth
We are passionate about working closely with the neighbouring Traditional Land Owners and have on many occasions formed partnerships to meet an environmental need.
WHY DO PEOPLE ENGAGE OUR SERVICES?
- A 100% Aboriginal Owned organisation, actively engaged in social and economic development activities in the region
- Capable management team with industry experience
- Strong cultural ties and intimate knowledge of the land and community
- Customer centric with clear understanding of customer needs and pain points
- Committed to excellence in service delivery and execution
- Experienced and trained staff supported by inhouse plants and equipment required for the job
- Extended professional network and close ties with the neighbouring Traditional Owners of the land
PURPOSE AND VISION
Barapa Land & Water’s vision is to create and secure opportunities for our community, continue cultural practices on our traditional country.
We aim to increase cultural practices, values and connection to country, land, and water, for all, from elders to the next generations.
Creating, healthier community with knowledge and skills, caring for families and country, increasing local, regional, state, and federal economic participation, development and growth.
Self Determination in community care, employment, training, and education for the health and wealth of our community, gaining cultural knowledge, skills and experience and continuing our cultural heritage by caring for families, community and country both in land and waters.
We aim to improve the health and wellbeing of the Barapa Barapa people, relieve poverty or sickness within the community and advance education and employment prospects of our people. We will do this while also promoting, protecting, nurturing and restoring our lands via land and water resource management. Working with government departments and other private landowners to deliver a healthier country, via natural resource management and by using our ancestral cultural knowledge and practices.
CEO and Owner
Deborah is a proud Barapa Barapa woman. Raised on a dairy farm and working on sheep stations, Deborah loves the land and all it has to offer.
Deborah has a wealth of experience and knowledge both in mainstream and Aboriginal services, with more than 30 years working in health, wellbeing in community services. This has given Deborah a good understanding of people, families and the impact from their environment and their connection to country and community to their health and wellbeing.
Deborah has a Masters in Business Management, along with an Advanced Diploma in Business Management which both speak to her skills in leading the organisation.
Rodney has a wealth of experience in operations with 35 years’ experience in trucks, bobcats, loaders, tractors, pest weed/animal management, fencing, environmental burns, re-vegetation and management, cultural identification, education and assessment of sites, management of land around sensitive areas
Shaun is a trained General Fire Fighter (GFF) and is trained in Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Management (ACHM). He also has 15 years’ experience as a qualified mechanic.
Site Manager Liam has extensive experience and knowledge in Landcare and outdoor education, he is also a qualified General Fire Fighter (GFF) and has completed his Bachelor of Outdoor Recreation.
Wayne has over 30 years experience in farming and Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Management. Giving you peace of mind that all works are completed to the highest standard and with the utmost care.