Bendee Downs being an area owned by the Kooma Traditional owners, involves an indigenous population though little, within its precincts. Therefore respecting and gaining knowledge about local culture and customs of the Kooma people are of central importance when dealing with a project as the EWB challenge. This being a symbol to show the traditional owners a sign of respect can be also turned into an asset for this ecotourism project. The local culture of a particular area is what mainly attracts tourists, as tourists prefer to experience different customs and cultures of different places (Costa n.d). This project aims to involve specific indigenous customs to enhance and attract tourists, giving them a unique experience and at the same time giving them the benefit to learn about Australia’s aboriginal culture. These namely include mainly dreamtime stories, music and dance, Spears and Boomerangs throwing, artefacts and medicinal plants. Therefore this section will mainly concentrate on the Indigenous culture of the place and its involvement in the project.
The Bendee downs is a piece of land which was granted ownership to the Kooma Traditional Owner’s Association Incorporated (KTOAI) in January 2000 (QUT 2010). The indigenous nation of the Kooma people is situated towards south-west Queensland as can be clearly seen in the picture below.
The Indigenous culture and people are going to be of main importance to the project. As the projects main objective would be to get the guests involved with the local community and learn about their culture. So the Kooma culture will be involved in many different ways and times, but the below mentioned 3 main activities will be the ones which this section will mainly focus about. Dreamtime Stories music and dance
The Indigenous people of Australia also believe that there was a time where everything was created, plants ,animals, lakes, mountains etc…. in other words a “Creation Period” .This is what today is commonly known as the “Dreamtime“ (Aboriginalculture n.d). So when they dream, it is believed that they are bought back to their ancestral time, that is why they interpret them as being a memory of that period, being the only linkage between them and their ancestors (Aboriginalculture n.d).Also Indigenous music is of vital importance to their culture, holding a lot of meaning and memories of their ancestors(Hans W. Telford n.d).They also possess a wide range of their own unique musical instruments such as the Boomerang clapsticks and the Percussion tube (Hans W. Telford n.d). Spears and Boomerangs throwing
Spears and Boomerangs are tools which the indigenous people used and are still using as weapons for hunting , protective and many other purposes. Many different types of Spears and Boomerangs are used within the Indigenous community, according to specific uses(Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2007). It is fascinating how these people carried with them a single utensil “the boomerang ” which was fundamentally able to do everything necessary for them , as the used it as a cutting utensil, as a hammer, as a digging device , as a fire making device, or even a musical instrument , and offcourse its main use of hunting and fighting (Jones Philips 2004). Artefacts and medicinal plants
Art is another important part of the indigenous culture. Their art vary between a vast range of things, including rock carvings, body painting and ground designs which is commonly made available today in paper , canvas, fibres , glass and in many other forms (Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2007). Also Aborigines made use of just the environment around as a source for medicine. It is quite interesting to learn about this curing plants and how the indigenous people go on preparing them for use, often battered or crushed to obtain a poultice (Australian National Botanic Garden Education Services 2000)....
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