Promoting Diversity

Promoting diversity in leadership was the theme of the 3rd annual Gippsland Women in Leadership Forum held in Traralgon last week.

Organised by the Gippsland Environmental Agencies (GEA) Women in Leadership team, the forum encourages women to be great leaders, no matter their position, through a culture of growth and empowerment.

The GEA includes the Department of Environment, Land , Water and Planning, Parks Victoria, East Gippsland Water, Southern Rural Water, Gippsland Water, the Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation, the Environment Protection Authority, Trust For Nature, Sustainability Victoria and the East and West Gippsland Catchment Management Authorities.

Guest speakers Doris Paton and Harriet Shing spoke about their leadership journey’s while non binary author Nevo Zisin discussed gender acceptance and inclusion in today’s society.

A Q&A panel led an insightful discussion about equity and diversity in the workplace before professional coach Maree McPherson talked about unconscious biases that hold people back.

The GEA Women in Leadership team Chair, Bec Hemming, said “With 100 people from 13 agencies in the room, today was a great event to build connections and promote finding, making and taking opportunities.”

Waterbug Blitz

Waders had nets at the ready last week as community members participated in Waterbug ID training sessions as part of the National Waterbug Blitz at Swifts Creek and the Heyfield Wetlands.

Presented by leading waterbug expert John Gooderham, the events taught interested locals the tools to investigate how healthy their waterways and wetlands are by exploring and identifying what bugs live in them.

The citizen science project encourages individuals and local groups to explore their local freshwater creeks, rivers, wetlands and dams to learn about the world of waterbugs, contribute to improving waterway health and share their knowledge with their communities.

Participants were keen to get outdoors and identify some of the more fragile critters living in our waterways and proudly earned a yellow ‘identification’ bandana for their efforts.

The event was supported by the East Gippsland and West Gippsland Catchment Management Authorities to improve the health of waterways and catchments throughout Gippsland.

Paddle Power

The lower Mitchell River was a hub of activity last weekend as the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA) hosted a community paddle around Picnic Point.

After welcome rain the night before, paddlers travelled 5km downstream to the Picnic Point Reserve where they enjoyed a well earned picnic lunch.

Sean Phillipson, Operations Manager at the EGCMA, spoke about the history of the river and its importance for the health and wellbeing of the community. “The Mitchell River plays a vital role in supporting the local economy through provision of irrigation and town water and as a major destination for visitors and locals alike. People enjoy walking or riding bikes along the banks of the river, swimming,  paddling, fishing or simply relaxing and taking in the scenery. It’s nice to be able to provide an opportunity for our community to experience the river from the water.”

Respecting Country

The East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA) has been working with the Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation and local landholders to improve the condition of the Mitchell River Catchment and preserve Gunaikurnai cultural heritage.

On the banks of the Upper Mitchell, 800m of willows has been removed and the banks will be planted with native trees and shrubs to reduce erosion, improve riverbank stability and promote biodiversity. GLaWAC Cultural Heritage Officers Nicky Moffat and Paula Martin visited the site when the initial works got underway to identify the nature of any Aboriginal cultural heritage findings although none were ultimately unearthed.

“Working in partnership with GLaWAC before work starts helps ensure that our activity does not disturb areas of cultural importance.” noted Graeme Dear, CEO of the EGCMA.

Let’s Talk Bass

The East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (the EGCMA), Marlo Angling Club and Bairnsdale RSL Fishing Club have confirmed that ‘Bushy’ Busch will be guest speaker at the upcoming Let’s Talk Bass Forums on the 17th and 18th of September.

Run over two nights in Marlo and Bairnsdale respectively, the forums will be packed full of information about techniques to catch an iconic Australian Bass and how to fine tune your when, where and how.

Joining Bushy will be Jarod Lyon from the Arthur Rylah Institute and John Douglas from the Victorian Fisheries Authority; on hand to talk fish stocks, Bass habitat and river health.

Let’s Talk Bass will kick off with a free bbq at 6.30pm at the Marlo Angling Club on Monday 17th, September. The action then heads to the Bairnsdale RSL Fishing Club on Tuesday 18th, September at 6.30pm with a light supper provided.

For more details please contact the Marlo Angling Club or Bairnsdale RSL Fishing Club.