Home Education Beemurra Aboriginal Corp: Camping with the season on Yallalie Downs

Beemurra Aboriginal Corp: Camping with the season on Yallalie Downs

Madeline Anderson, Camp Manager sitting in a Mia Mia built by one of the youth groups.

Registered in 1998, working with a piece of land called Yallalie Downs, Beemurra Aboriginal Corporation (BAC) has found success in cattle backgrounding — a process of optimising cattle health for various market requirements.

The 1242 hectare property on Yued country is in Dandaragan. It is run and managed by a multi-generational family, led by Kevin Barron and Madeline Anderson who manages the business, camp, and is a director.

Beemurra Aboriginal Corporation exists to work with the land and to support social and economic development for Aboriginal people. The five objectives include: building a financial base for community development activities; promoting community development in the areas of education, health, employment and welfare to the community; providing assistance to achieve better educational outcomes, training and employment opportunities; supporting promotion of language and culture; and holding land title in its own right, and use the land for the benefit of the community.

The Yallalie meteorite crater is a feature of the property, which Beemurra have started using as a key feature in cultural youth camps, sharing Aboriginal stories of the night sky.

Camping with the seasons on Yallalie Downs youth camps offer a cultural healing space, drawing on cultural astronomy and science to deliver leadership skills and social benefit.

The first trial youth camp took place in October 2021 and was a big success. Fifteen local youth attended (from years 7-9) and participated in programs and activities integrating Yued culture with science and astronomy.

On 20-22 April 2022 a second successful camp was held. Director Madeline Anderson said, “Activites included tree planting, tapping sticks, jewellery making, survival skills, making damper and building a fire.

“We also built mia mias, engaged in stargazing, storytelling, night walks and plenty of fun and games!”

Each camp event is aligned with a Noongar season and is supported by Yued Elders who lead some of the cultural activities. In the long-term, the focus is on increasing capacity and confidence and ready to lead and deliver youth camp activities to their younger peers (under supervision).