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Toowoomba faciitator - James McKee

James has been actively involved in natural resource management (NRM) for over ten years, both on his family properties and professionally. He was the inaugural chairman of the Toowoomba Landcare group and helped to develop it from a small group to a multi-million dollar business which supports and promotes the landcare ethic in Toowoomba and surrounds. He has a small property near Toowoomba on which he tries to walk the talk.

James has worked in regional NRM planning and monitoring and evaluation. He comes from a farming background in broadacre and intensive agriculture and has undertaken formal studies in agricultural science and sustainable agriculture management. Career highlights include graduating from the Murray-Darling Basin Leadership Program, helping develop Landcare in the USA and India, and being invited to speak at the United Nations Commission for Sustainable Development in 2004 and the 2004 American National Planning Association Conference.

The last shimmering rays of light
Poke their beams into the approaching night
The breeze across the dunes gently blows
The quickly darkening water flows

A pelican glides in and hovers low
Nearby, the loud call of a crow
The pelican gently skids to a stop
The last rays of light suddenly drop

Dusk.. a few moments of silence
A sense of peace and reverence
A changing of the guard here
For some hope, for others fear.

Darkness surrounds like a shroud
The rustle of reeds grows loud
Night sounds begin to quicken
The multitude of stars thicken

Dawn..a blaze of glorious light
The still quietness is just right
As nature calls us too attention
To watch the bright sun's ascension

The birds begin to chatter and call
The sun becomes a blazing ball
The guard changes yet again
Another day, yet no two the same

The water begins to glow and dance
All seems well at a quick glance
But underneath the surface lurks a disaster
And not just rocks for those who row faster

The foundation of so much life
The mighty Coorong is in strife
Our pathetic ignorance and greed
Has caused this place to bleed

This is my opportunity to listen
To learn for myself the lesson
To take that back to my own
Before the opportunity has flown

Nightfall is here once again
This time it is not the same
I know I must do some things
Before this place no longer sings

(I may only be a gecko and small
Seemingly powerless to change things much at all
But in my heart I now know
My change is the first that could start the flow)