Community

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Vision: A motivated and connected community leads positive change for people, land, water and biodiversity.

Photo of children and corporate volunteers helping to plant trees.

Community capacity and resilience are closely linked to the health of the catchment’s natural resources. The Goulburn Broken Catchment community has long been involved in the management of natural resources and continued buy-in is essential to achieve the large-scale, urgent and complex change needed to improve natural resource health and respond to climate change.

There are a number of drivers and trends influencing community capacity, resilience and involvement in NRM. Firstly, the people using and influencing the catchment’s natural resources are increasingly diverse, with many living outside the catchment. In addition, the majority of the catchment’s population now live and work in urban centres and towns with the transition to a service economy. This has resulted in residents increasingly valuing the natural environment to enhance their lifestyle, rather than for earning a living, similar to the large number of visitors who come for recreational activities such as fishing, camping and skiing.

Adding to the complexity, the people managing natural resources are not always the same as those using or benefitting from them. The catchment’s natural resources may be managed publicly, by government and Traditional Owners, and/or privately, by farmers and lifestyle landholders, with differences in management approaches and values. For example, much of the private land is managed for agricultural production, and while NRM is critical to the sustainability of agricultural businesses (private benefit), it also provides a lot of benefit for the community and environment (public benefit).

With changes in the catchment population and the increasing diversity and complexity between natural resource users and managers, community engagement in NRM is changing. Furthermore, with increasing and competing priorities for public resources, combined with the urgency to improve the catchment’s natural resources, the demands on community volunteers are increasing along with the need to explore new investment opportunities and engagement models.

A snapshot of the community theme of the strategy is provided in Figure 37, click on the tabs below for further details.

A diagram summarising the community theme content of the strategy, with four main sections: current situation in 2021, critical attributes, medium-term outcomes and what success looks like in 2040. The content of the diagram is described in the information below the diagram.
Figure 37: Summary of the community theme of the Goulburn Broken Regional Catchment Strategy

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