We used to go to the west coast to practice our culture and connect to country. As an Aboriginal person, land is who we are. It’s part of our spirituality and it’s part of our community. It’s my home, both my spiritual and my physical home.
takayna provides me with the tools to continue the unbroken cultural connection, to share cultural knowledge and to become part of the story for the future. takayna represents the history of our island and of my people in a time much richer and very different to the way we live today.
You have a connection with country, you always do, but you can go there and see what our old people did. You can pick up an artefact that may not have been held for hundreds of years. It allows me to connect with the old people.
takayna is a place so rich in heritage, a place that offers up the stories of the old people like nowhere else. takayna gives me a strong cultural connection, a feeling of pride within and fuels a deep and profound need to protect her.
To me this place is the country that holds the connection to our forebears. This place is a cultural landscape that gives our people the ability to retain a spiritual relationship with a land practically untouched since invasion.
The heritage is not just for us and our community – for our connection to country and the old fellas – it’s for everyone. I want my grandchildren to be able to have the opportunity to go to these places, to walk in the footsteps of our ancestors and look at the material in the middens.
We need places where Aboriginal people can go and see a landscape that hasn’t changed much, or at all, since their ancestors lived a tribal life there. There are very few of those places around and therefore the ones that do exist require the most protection.
The area between Sandy Cape and the Pieman River is a beautiful Aboriginal landscape that shows the evidence of our past people. Where they lived and what they ate and traded, where they practiced culture and buried their people.
Outstanding Aboriginal cultural values have seen takayna included on Australia’s National Heritage list. Yet takayna remains under threat and needs a mighty public effort to be saved.
In 2014, the Tasmanian government reopened 90km of off-road vehicle tracks across the dunes and middens of the remote takayna coastline. The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre took the Tasmanian government to court and won, with the Federal Court ruling that these tracks should remain closed. But now both the Australian and Tasmanian government are appealing that decision and are committed to reopening the tracks.
Join the campaign to provide takayna with the permanent legal protection it deserves.