Ceremonial rock circle finalist for HART Award

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Moonee Valley City Council’s new ceremonial rock circle at Five Mile Creek Reserve in Essendon has been nominated for a HART Award.

The site has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Local Government category of this year’s HART (Helping Achieve Reconciliation Together) Awards, which are presented by Reconciliation Victoria and the Victorian Local Governance Association (VLGA) to acknowledge Victorian initiatives that contribute to local reconciliation outcomes.

Moonee Valley Mayor Cr John Sipek said the new rock circle (called Babepal Paen-mirring, meaning “Mother’s tear” in Woi wurrung language) is an important part of Council’s reconciliation efforts with the Traditional Custodians of the land on which Moonee Valley sits, the Wurundjeri People.

“The site on which the rock circle sits recognises a registered site of Aboriginal significance and protects artefacts found at the site,” Cr Sipek said.

“After consultations with the Wurundjeri Land Council, it was decided to place rocks in the shape of an eye so that the tears of Mother Earth could flow down into Five Mile Creek. The rocks were placed in groups of three representing the three main family groups of the Wurundjeri – the Wandins, the Nevins and the Terricks.”

In establishing the site, Council has engaged the Wurundjeri Narrap team as a specialist contractor to not only create but also manage and maintain the site, including planting, landscaping and burnings. This has allowed the team to connect with their Country while also supporting Wurundjeri Council.

Portfolio holder for Access, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Cr Cam Nation, said the site is an important part of a broader approach to educate our community about the significance of this area to the Wurundjeri People.

“This initiative acts on a commitment in our Reconciliation Policy to partner with the Wurundjeri Council for environmental activities, events and land management projects, while also promoting reconciliation through respect, recognition and relationship-building and encouraging others to do the same,” Cr Nation said.

“We will continue to work with the Wurundjeri Council to hold ceremonies and demonstrations of Wurundjeri culture at the site, with an event already planned to harvest the Murnong (yam daisy) recently planted by our local community. The rock circle has also become a space for other Aboriginal people to connect with the land on which they live.”

The Awards will be presented on Friday, 1 June during Reconciliation Week.

Check out this video from our Walk with Wurundjeri event:

Media enquiries:
Sarah Schwager, Media Advisor
Phone: 03 9243 8813; Email: media@mvcc.vic.gov.au

Last updated: Tuesday, 15 May 2018, 1:56 AM