This paper is about two New South Wales Aboriginal groups that are engaging Aboriginal people in looking after their country. In particular, it highlights the socioeconomic benefits such activity is generating for the people involved.
Banbai Business Enterprises manages the first Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) in New South Wales, ‘Wattleridge’, on the New England Tablelands north east of Guyra, and is now also managing a second IPA, ‘Tarriwa Kurrukun’, on land owned by the Guyra Local Aboriginal Land Council. The Nyambaga Green Team operates from the Ngurrala Aboriginal Corporation near Macksville, New South Wales. The Nyambaga Green Team successfully sustains itself through a mix of contracts with a range of natural resource management and other bodies which it carries out on a commercial basis.
At both locations a diverse range of significant cultural, social and economic benefits are emerging which the paper outlines. It then discusses some of the factors and conditions for success in these ventures and reflects briefly on the policy implications.
Keywords: Natural resource management, New South Wales, land and sea management, socio-economic benefits, Aboriginal employment; Indigenous protected area, caring for country, Banbai, Gumbaynggirr.