IPMEN Conference in Townsville / Natalie Davey and Pelican
http://www.coexploration.org/index.html This is the site for the Marine science conference in Townsville happening this weekend. The link takes you to a page you can register to join the proceedings online. Natalie Davey of Pelican Expeditions and Saltwater will be giving a key note address on Saturday ( see schedule ) and bio and description . She will be presenting about Pelican projects and an overveiw of the work with Scientists and Traditional custodians in relation to saltwater country and caring for country. This is important work. She will also be talking and showing some of the examples from the dst project we have just finished with the Bama in Cape York , with their permission. Please do join and have a look.
Natalie Davey is director and one of the founders of Saltwater Projects and Pelican Expeditions. She has been actively interested and involved in multidisciplinary projects in the Arts/ Science domain for the last 10 years. After receiving a Fine Arts degree at the Slade in London, working as an artist and teaching English in Germany for a number of years, she returned to Australia to pursue her interests in Community projects. This led to becoming involved in the building of Pelican1, a 63 foot ocean going Catamaran, and working on projects that combine her passions for the environment, Arts and social justice. Her 6 yr old daughter, Aurora, is fast learning the ropes and made her first Bass Strait crossing with the Pelican crew this year.
Her presentation will chart some of the work that Pelican Expeditions has been doing over the last 4 years, particularly focusing on the work with the Hope Vale community in Far North Queensland.
The Hope Vale project works with the richness of connection, history and knowledge of the Traditional Owners to Sea Country, by providing the vessel Pelican1 to visit Traditional lands (incl Lizard Island) that have often been inaccessible to them. A camp is set up on the beach at the remote location of Cape Flattery, and Pelican1 is used to allow both Elders and youth to travel together on Sea Country and visit Traditional lands that have not been visited by most in the Community for a very long time. These direct experiences are linked with scientific modes of understanding the marine environment, such as water quality monitoring and turtle tagging. This work creates a vibrant exchange and also provides Elders with a platform to motivate and connect with their Aboriginal youth.
Along the way it allows all participants to realise the importance of Caring for Sea Country and to gain inspiration from time actually spent on Sea Country.
Paper title: Old Ways New Ways – Adventures in Capacity Building
Abstract: This paper will focus on the work of Pelican Expeditions along the East Coast of Australia. Our work is powerfully motivated by the belief that good science, inspiration and being in the elements, in this case, the marine environment, is the best way to cultivate a shared sense of knowledge and belonging. These vital experiences are crucial not only in our understanding of the marine world but also cultivate a connective ness to the marine world, which we hope, in our small way, to help foster people’s desire to protect and celebrate the oceans upon which we depend.
Often our projects are an interesting mixture of Science and community engagement. This involves data collection and community engagement in the science, by either direct interaction with scientists on the boat or shared through media of all varieties, including importantly the Web. We also work with Indigenous communities and I will be speaking in particular about our work with the community of Hope Vale in Far North Queensland. The project grew from an initial response to a cry for help from an Aboriginal woman who was despairing at the suicide rate in her community. We are now in our 5th year working there and by the time I give this talk we will have completed a whole month of activities based in and around Cape Flattery. All the activities are developed in consultation with Elders, who direct the project together with our team. This year we are aiming to activate and bring into focus the Sea Country plans, while being on Sea Country. The Hope Vale youngsters will be involved in activities such as Following Ancestral journeys, through kayak trips from the Pelican, turtle tagging, monitoring estuarine health and water quality and listening and sharing stories with their Elders. We are also running a Digital Story telling program to enable the youth to capture stories, events and adventures that happen on Sea Country so that these will then be a personal record of their journeys. All these stories will be owned by the Community and will be archived as part of a Community Knowledge project. I will also talk about some of the work we have done in Victoria, which looks at linking Cultural Mapping with scientific data collection. We are also planning a journey to link the traditional cultures of Vanuatu and the Indigenous people of Western Victoria by following and attempting to understand the still very mysterious short fin eel migration, which happens annually in the Autumn.