Hunter Water has developed a unique learning resource, in collaboration with its local Aboriginal and education communities, aimed at helping educate young people about the value of water and the role we all play in conserving our precious resource.
Launched today during National Reconciliation Week, Where’s Our Water? is a free children’s eBook that tells a story about native animals living around the Hunter River, drawing on the traditional wisdom and practices of Aboriginal people in caring for our land and waterways.
Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey said she is proud to announce the launch of this fantastic children’s eBook, which is a first-of-its-kind resource for the Australian water industry.
“The experiences of the severe drought are still front of mind for many in our communities across NSW and it’s important we continue to teach our younger generation about the finite and precious nature of water,” Mrs Pavey said.
“Where’s Our Water? is a valuable resource for our kids to learn about water conservation and the role we all have in protecting it now and in the future.”
For the past six months, Hunter Water has been working with the University of Newcastle and the Awabakal and Worimi communities to create the story with 10 Aboriginal students from Newcastle High School.
The students worked together to create the concept and storyline, developing the narrative for Where’s Our Water? over the course of four full-day interactive workshops.
Where’s Our Water? has been endorsed by the Muloobinbah Local Aboriginal Education Consultative Group.
Hunter-based Aboriginal artist Saretta Fielding said it was a privilege to be part of this project and to help bring this story to life.
“I’m particularly proud that the story has been developed in two versions to incorporate the traditional languages of the Awabakal and Worimi peoples, demonstrating the shared value of this resource within our community,” Ms Fielding said.
Hunter Water’s Education Coordinator Kristy Ratcliffe said Where’s Our Water? has been made widely available on Hunter Water’s website.
“We’ve made this free resource available for everyone in our community so that it can be shared and enjoyed,” Ms Ratcliffe said.
“It will be a valuable tool for engaging with our local school community. In addition, we plan to produce a range of complementary online learning resources to help spread the water conservation message and raise awareness among our younger generation.”
Where’s Our Water? is available at www.hunterwater.com.au/schools
Where’s Our Water? contributors
Hunter Water would like to extend a special thanks to:
- Kathryn Grushka,
- Belinda Wright,
- Deidre Heitmeyer,
- John Lester,
- Karen Nobes,
- Miranda Lawry,
- Nathan Towney,
- Newcastle High School Storytellers,
- Paul Myers,
- Rochelle Dooley,
- Ruth Crick,
- Saretta Fielding, and
- Studio Zed Design Team.