To Engineers Without Borders and the Dawul Wuru Corporation,
Our team will be addressing the design challenges 4.1 Nursery for cultivating bush tucker and native plants and 6.1 Rainwater harvesting to support bush tucker gardening. Before we proceed with our investigations, we would like to gauge the interest in a potential solution and seek out additional information.
We would like to investigate the possibility of a mobile nursery that can be used for revegetation projects and as an educational tool across Country as well at schools and public events. The nursery would be designed around themes and stories to promote Language and culture. We will investigate methods of keeping the entire set up portable as well as methods of delivery. If there is interest in this concept, we would like to begin developing a solution.
Aside from this idea, we have a list of questions in regard to both design challenges.
Beginning with the nursey, what traditional themes, stories, and Language would you like to see incorporated?
If the nursery was to travel in an education capacity, who would represent the First Nation groups of the area and act as an educator?
What are the budgetary restrictions of this design area?
Does Dawul Wuru currently have members skilled in fabrication (carpentry, welding, etc.) or members that carry additional licences (MR, forklift etc.)?
Is there any experience in cultivating native plants or nursery operation on hand?
What traditional methods are used for cultivation and propagation?
Additionally, we have questions regarding the rainwater collection design challenge:
Does Dawul Wuru have any plumbers available to assist in setup operations?
Will the rainwater be used exclusively for the nursery, or will it be used in other operations?
What are the budgetary restrictions for this design?
Is there any Language that can be integrated as part of this design?
We hope to hear back from you soon with what answers you will be able to provide us,
Thank you for your detailed description of your project, it sounds fantastic and it’s great to see that you’re incorporating the broader vision of Dawul Wuru into your design.
I’ve answered each of your questions below:
Q: Beginning with the nursey, what traditional themes, stories, and Language would you like to see incorporated?
A: Great question. I’d like to propose one back to you – is there a way that this could be determined by Dawul Wuru? For example, in your report you can highlight that there is an intention to include traditional stories, however leaving it ultimately up to Dawul Wuru / Yirrganydji people to decide which ones exactly they will share? By including this kind of flexibility in your design, you will enable it to be adapted as appropriate, as determined by Dawul Wuru themselves. However you can draw inspiration from what Dawul Wuru have already shared about how they care for Land Country, for example, the use of fire in land management might be a theme that you could decide to highlight.
Q: If the nursery was to travel in an education capacity, who would represent the First Nation groups of the area and act as an educator?
A: Good question, and one which I think would require some more thoughts from you, based on your project proposal. For example, is this nursery intended to stay only on Yirrganydji Country, or travel to other Traditional-Owner group lands? What kind of audience is the intention for this project? Would a staff member at Dawul Wuru be required to act as an educator? What kind of role might that be? Is collaboration required between the First Nations groups of the areas, and how could this be accommodated? You don’t need to have an answer to all of these questions, and it is possible to leave these decisions up to Dawul Wuru if you feel they are best placed to make them, just be sure to include this clearly in your report, alongside your reasoning.
Q; What are the budgetary restrictions of this design area?
A: The EWB Challenge design brief does not specify a budget or maximum cost that a project must fit within as every project may vary in complexity and scale depending on the project aims. In tackling budget concerns, we have outlined some tips on EWB Challenge FAQs. In this guide, we mentioned that in your design considerations, you might think about the ‘Capital Expenditure’ (initial cost to start) and Operational Expenditure (ongoing costs over time), which might include material and implementation costs, operation/program delivery costs, and maintenance costs. Ultimately it will be up to your team to decide what is a reasonable budget based on the value your design provides. You can justify a larger budget, for example, if you can demonstrate value for money such as longevity of your solution with minimal maintenance required.
Q: Does Dawul Wuru currently have members skilled in fabrication (carpentry, welding, etc.) or members that carry additional licences (MR, forklift etc.)?
A: Many of the maintenance crew employed at Dawul Wuru have a wide range of skills, and some are qualified tradespeople, and you can assume there are general handy skills on the team. Dawul Wuru have an interest in upskilling their staff in trade related skills, so keep this in mind as you progress your design – if external help is required, can this be a learning opportunity for staff at Dawul Wuru. In terms of additional licensing, there may be members on the team that hold these, however it would be on an individual basis rather than as an organisational requirement.
Q: Is there any experience in cultivating native plants or nursery operation on hand?
A: Not specifically cultivation in a nursery setting, as this is a future aspiration for Dawul Wuru. Their rangers, however, have experience with working with native plants and have ideas about how to cultivate them through their land management work. This previous discussion forum question addresses similar queries, and has some useful links for you.
Q: What traditional methods are used for cultivation and propagation?
A: The forum topic linked in response to the question above will provide you a similar answer. Essentially, by researching and looking at bush tucker and native plants which grow in the region, you can start to understand their needs and design your nursery accordingly.
Q: Does Dawul Wuru have any plumbers available to assist in setup operations?A: Many of the maintenance crew employed at Dawul Wuru have a wide range of skills, and some are qualified tradespeople, however there are no licensed plumbers employed at present. Dawul Wuru have an interest in upskilling their staff in trade related skills, including plumbing, so if there is an opportunity for them to be involved in some capacity that would be favourable (depending on your design requirements, of course!).
Q: Will the rainwater be used exclusively for the nursery, or will it be used in other operations?
A: For the purposes of your project, you are able to define that the rainwater system that you design will be for the nursery. However, Dawul Wuru have expressed a desire to have their Hub be off-grid and not supplied by mains water, so if you’re able to design a rainwater collection / distribution process that could be scaled and adapted across their organisation to meet their water needs that would be beneficial, however it is not a requirement of this particular project.
Q: What are the budgetary restrictions for this design?
A: See earlier answer above 🙂
Q: Is there any Language that can be integrated as part of this design?
A: If you take a look under the Resources we have provided, there is a section for Yirrgay dialect, which includes some key words/phrases which you might like to include. You also have the option to leave space for this to be determined by Dawul Wuru themselves.
I hope this helps, please reach out with any further questions!
Good luck with your project!
I too have a question about the link between challenge areas, specifically 6.1 and 4.1.
My group’s challenge is 6.1. It seems to make sense to try and integrate ideas (and work) between say structures (Area 1) which would be thinking about roof spaces where we are harvesting the water from, as well as water for hub needs and challenge 4.1 which is to design a nursery.
I am thinking that these areas need to be interconnected, rather than isolated which is how some of my team members view the issue. I’m not sure that will work within the parameters of what is being asked.
Thanks for taking us through your group’s thought process. Your perspective is valid. The project opportunities can be interconnected.
We’ve designed the project opportunities to highlight the community-identified priorities and are not restrictive. The scope of your project can cover one project opportunity or multiple project opportunities. Whichever approach you take, the only expectation is that we want to see how you justify your design and document your assumptions (if there are any) based on your understanding of the project context and the design criteria you’ve set.
I hope we have provided you with enough information to help your team move forward.
All the best,
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