Merri Merri Wayi

Merri Merri Wayi, meaning Merri Merri Us.

This is the Woi-wurrung language name granted to the collaboration by Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Elder Aunty Gail Smith, who we’ve had the deep privilege of working with. We thank her for naming this collaboration.

Merri Merri Wayi is a collaboration for the future of the Merri Creek so communities can support a thriving and healthy ecosystem.

The collaboration reflects:

  • The unique values of the Merri Creek
  • The high environmental quality of Merri Creek, its tributaries and its environs.
  • Collective impact principles and conditions
  • The strong community interest and involvement that has developed around it
  • The great things that Council, community organisations and individuals are already doing
  • The opportunities for community to support a thriving and healthy ecosystem

Below, you will find a recording of Aunty Gail introducing the name alongside the traditional name for the creek, Merri Merri, which means rocky rocky. Aunty Gail goes on to speak of the importance of bringing language, knowledge and culture back and how all of us are needed to look after waterways for future generations.

Merri Merri Wayi Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung naming

Get involved

We invite you to keep engaged with Merri Merri Wayi by clicking the Follow button at the top of the project page.

We also invite you to keep the conversation going with us and others by commenting on what you love about the creek and your vision for how it could be, in the feedback tool further down this page.

Background

The call for a Merri Creek & Surrounds Visioning exercise arose amongst a range of community organisations and community members, who came together following the attack on a woman along the creek in East Coburg in late 2019.

While the Merri Creek Safety Report was an important response to this terrible incident, community organisations and community members also recognised the opportunity to build on existing work and action, as well as coming together to find new ones. These should comprehensively address issues such as:

  • Safe spaces for women
  • Indigenous connection
  • Celebrating the creek through art and sculpture
  • Rewilding
  • Embracing the urban food cultivation of the region as a leading example for other Australian and global communities

Thus a community visioning exercise was proposed and endorsed by Moreland City Council in 2021.

Acknowledgement

The Merri Creek is an iconic and important ecosystem with more than 40,000 years of human interaction and Traditional Ecological Knowledge from the Wurundjeri peoples. This project acknowledges the past, present and future role Traditional Owners have on the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung peoples. This project also acknowledges the thousands of people who have volunteered and worked to protect Merri Creek, notably the Friends of Merri Creek and the Merri Creek Management Committee.