FUTURE FOCUS: A new TAFE NSW Wagga Wagga course is upskilling local Aboriginal residents to better care for and protect Aboriginal lands.
A unique course aimed at giving locals the practical skills to help manage and protect Aboriginal lands will be offered for the first time at TAFE NSW Wagga Wagga this month.
The Certificate III in Conservation and Ecosystem Management aims to build a qualified army of rangers, and weed and pest inspectors, to work On Country to protect flora and fauna from the devastating impacts of climate change.
The course is being run in partnership with the NSW Aboriginal Land Council and involves a blend of online, face-to-face and On Country learning.
Wagga Wagga Local Aboriginal Land Council CEO Lorraine Lyons welcomed the new course and said it would upskill the local Aboriginal community to help protect Aboriginal lands for generations to come.
“By having a skilled mob on the ground, they will gain the confidence to work on country and preserve our culture and heritage,” Ms Lyons said.
“We strongly believe this is the way forward and will be extremely important to our community to gain the necessary skills and in return bring great employment opportunities.”
TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Agroecology Rob Fenton said the course was in response to a growing recognition in the Wagga Wagga community that more needed to be done to preserve Aboriginal lands.
“Especially since the recent fires and floods, there’s a community recognition of the importance of managing out lands more effectively,” Mr Fenton said.
“We are the last remaining piece of Gondwana on the face of the planet and there’s no place on Earth that’s as important to protect as the Australian ecosystem.
“TAFE NSW will give these students the real-world practical skills and experience to make an immediate impact on the job.”
Mr Fenton said graduates wouldn’t just be undertaking important and rewarding work, but they would have the luxury of working outdoors.
The course includes units on identifying fauna, plant identification, inspecting special cultural and environmental sites, and land form and geology.
To explore the range of courses available at TAFE NSW and via TAFE Digital, visit www.tafensw.edu.au or phone 131 601 for more information.
Media contact: Dan Johns, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist, mobile 0477 722 428