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LEILANI

Ngadju Yaawu

"What is good for the land must come first, if you have plenty
share and don't take more than you need"

 

I was born in Hervey Bay, located in south east Queensland, raised both there and my traditional land Fraser Island, rather known as Kgari - meaning paradise to my people.

I'm a proud Butchulla, Wopparburra and Guntijimara woman, although as mentioned, having been born and raised on my Butchulla ~ country ~ (meaning our mother lands, where our blood lines originate)
I had a lot of my heritage/ cultural knowledge passed down there.
I descend from the owns clan and proud to hold strong kinship with my country and the law provided.

"....society, in so many ways is counterproductive to First Nations morals."

I'm so proud to be able to introduce my Butchulla heritage as a central guide to help look after the earth.

I always expose my main three laws, which state;
What is good for the land must come first, if you have plenty, share and never take what you don't need.

Our actions on a day to day basis are governed by environmental ~ lore ~ and I think this is not only progressive, but beautiful.

It enables constant connection to our Mother Earth.
I do believe we have the resources to inhabit the world sustainably..

"To live in a circle of life,
not a human made hierarchy."

I also believe one of the ways to achieving this is to remember our roots.
That we are visitors on this land who nurtures us all. And in return protecting her, leaving as little footprint as we can.

I think a lot of my inspiration comes from what my identity is built around.
This is mainly my women creator, Birralgan who created K'gari, who we also refer to as our Ngabanjah, meaning Mother Earth.

I started to align what I learn in a western world with its compatibility to my culture. I think it's important and continue do this both socially and personally. I think since because society, in so many ways is counterproductive to First Nations morals. And I do strongly believe a lot of these morals are worthy to adopt in a modern Industrial Age, if not vital.

So I don't think I have a specific inspirer, but the way people are beginning to collectively and consciously consider our existence. 

When I studied environmental science I learnt an abundance of progressive things happening in the worldwide, like company's begging to recycle AND upcyle, similar to Indosole.

Other things like grassroot/First Nations networks taking on corporate infrastructure like the Dakota access pipeline. I was introduced to a world of new thinking and then I found SEED, an Australian Youth Grassroot environmental org.

I met groups all along the east coast of Australia, small and big who were apart of similar movements. As well as digitally across the globe.
It's motivating to push for effective change when people share the same mentality, I guess because you don't feel so isolated and the worlds weight isn't all on your shoulders.

"Nan demanded I climb and sit on this tree,
ensuring it wasn't bulldozed"

My grandmother is also someone I'd like to acknowledge in influencing conscious sustainability.

I remember my first action protest against the council who started to develop the bush land across from our house. I was about 9 years old.
Nan was adamant the land was sacred to Aboriginal people and was in her greatest interest to preserve.

There was a tree in that bush, like a big wooden rainbow; that us Ghundus (kids) would challenge our climbing skills on.
Nan demanded I climb and sit on this tree, ensuring it wasn't bulldozed. I remember the tractor coming towards me, the operator jumped out little dumbfounded asking me to get out off. My simple response was "My Nan says I have to sit here" and so I did, until the police arrived.

We ended up saving half of the bush, for now. Nan is constantly advocating for sacred sites and ecological sustainability in a cultural context, even at 72.

With these beliefs, I would like to thank Indosole. I want to show my appreciation for their contribution/efforts to encourage intergenerational, ecological equity.