Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week is a time to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

Reconciliation must live in the hearts, minds and actions of all Australians as we move forward, creating a nation strengthened by respectful relationships between the wider Australian community, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Soil Science Australia acknowledges the traditional owners of the land and pays its respects to their Elders, past, present and future.

Soil Science Australia acknowledges Aboriginal people’s deep connection and care for country over thousands of years. Soil cultivation and conservation was a key feature of Aboriginal land use across Australia during this time. Caring for country and soil for future generations is also a key priority for Soil Science Australia.

Aboriginal knowledge has contributed significantly to Australian and global soil science. Gilgai is an Australian aboriginal word (derived from Wiradhuri and Kamilaroi languages) meaning small water hole, and referred to the seasonal accumulation of water in the lower part of these features (1,2). In global soil science terminology, the word Gilgai has since been adopted to describe surface microrelief (mounds and depressions) associated with soils containing shrink–swell clays.

Soil Science Australia has committed to developing a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). Initially this will be a Reflect RAP which will allow us to spend time scoping and developing relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders, deciding on our vision for reconciliation and exploring our sphere of influence, before committing to specific actions or initiatives. This process will help to produce future RAPs that are meaningful, mutually beneficial and sustainable.

References:

  1. Paton T.R. (1984) Origin and terminology for gilgai in Australia. Geoderma, Volume 11, Issue 3, Pages 221-242.
  2. Gilgai Wetlands (2013). The State of Queensland

Soil Science Jobs

Project Consultant – Soils in Schools Program Australian Schools Curriculum