Pilbara Nyangumarta woman Nyaparu Rose has been awarded an important State land care award for her work in progressing native title in the region.
Ms Rose last week won the Leighton Holdings Indigenous Award at the 2011 Western Australian Landcare Awards for her work on the Pilbara Sea Country Plan.
The plan details freshwater, fisheries and fauna management for the Pilbara Sea Country region.
The region extends from the Ashburton River mouth south of Onslow to Eighty Mile beach north of Port Hedland and between Mandora and Anna Plains.
The Sea Country plan stipulates for education on ‘customary fishing’, supervision of tourism and its impact and lobbying for better scientific input regarding coastal and marine areas.
“It’s not only about Native Title on the land, it is also on the sea country, we need to take care of that as well,” Mr Rose said.
“Taking care of wildlife along the coastline and creating sea jobs for our people- getting them trained up as rangers so they can work along the coast.
“It is good to have our people out there as well looking after our areas,” she said.
The Port Hedland born Nyangumarta traditional owner, whose children and grandchildren also call the town home, was also integral in the development in Yandeyearra community over 20 years.
“We have not yet had mining on our country, on Nyangumarta country.
“It is more about conservation,” she said.
“For me- that keeps me motivated”.
A recent highlight of Yamatji Marlpa Aboriginal Corporation community liaison officer’s work was the positive determination of the Nyangumarta Native Title claim.
“Across the Pilbara, so many things are happening. You’ve got to be wide awake,” Ms Rose said.
“We hear these words, ‘self determination’ and by getting our country back, we’ll be able to do things on our country, without someone else watching over us.
“It’s about taking our young people, our next generation, back to the country and teaching them about our land and our culture.”