VIC Merri Creek Womens Walk

VIC Merri Creek Womens Walk
This initiative sets out to make a positive change by celebrating the Merri Creek community and its connection to the land and water. Find out more how this came about...

Merri Creek Women’s Walk - Trailmap, launch and walk

The idea to establish a Women’s Walk along the Merri Creek began in response to hearing the horrendous story of a man’s assault on a woman as she was jogging along the creek in broad daylight in 2019. While several events have been held to both acknowledge the harm and to try and reclaim the area as safe to be enjoyed by the broader community, AWA VIC Committee member Meredith Gibbs felt that a more lasting commemoration, and indeed celebration, of women along the Merri Creek would be appropriate. In addition to this, the Merri Creek is one of the most polluted urban waterways in Melbourne and local groups have been working tirelessly for some time to improve the waterway and riparian zone. 


Birds of the Merri Creek - photos by Adi Tudor

The journey

With the support of AWA’s Victorian Branch Committee of the Australian Water Association, Meredith was looking for a practical project to connect Merri Creek with AWA members and local groups for inspiration and provide an opportunity to share stories, which resulted in the idea to establish a walking trail, featuring women's stories, from Joe’s Garden along the Merri Creek between Moreland Road and Bell Street.

During times of lockdowns, we have all learned how important our local parks and waterways are in managing our well-being. The Victorian Branch of the Australian Water Association (AWA) has been working with the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation and the community to establish a virtual trail along the Merri Creek to create a greater awareness of people’s connection to the land and water.  The Merri Creek Women’s Walk trail acknowledges Wurundjeri’s connection to the land and water and tell the stories of several inspiring women who have contributed to Merri Creek and its local environment.

Due to Covid restrictions we could not host a launch on location but on Wednesday 20 October '21, many joined us online for the launch of the AWA VIC Merri Creek Women's Walk virtual trail map and listened to inspirational women who helped shape the Merri Creek environment. We had a wonderful Welcome to Country by Wurundjeri Elder Aunty Di who shared her personal connection to the Creek, and others too shared their stories from various locations along the trail.  

We now look forward to walking the trail on Wednesday 23 March 2022, during which we will have a Welcome to Country by Wurundjeri Elder Uncle Dave, as well as a smoking ceremony, before we explore the area of Joe's Garden and other parts of the Merri Creek. We also hope to reveal a permanent sign with a QR code linking to the virtual map for the broader community to enjoy. More detailed information to follow.

Join us for a late afternoon explore of the Merri Creek Women's Walk in March next year! Registrations will open soon... in the meantime, enjoy the trail at your own leisure.

AWA VIC Merri Creek Womens Walk - Trailmap:



In line with AWA’s Strategy to Share, Connect & Inspire

stories and knowledge about the Merri Creek:

  • how to achieve healthy (and safe) waterways and riparian areas that can be enjoyed by all and provide necessary ecosystem services;
  • celebrate indigeneity and diversity around the Merri Creek waterways through the sharing of stories by key women who have lived and/or worked on or near the Merri Creek, and
  • encourage and support care for the creek, improve the health of the waterway and its fauna and flora.

by engaging with stakeholders and communities of the Merri Creek including:

  • Wurundjeri and other Aboriginal people living in the area
  • Melbourne Water
  • Moreland Council (noting that the trail will be on the western side of the creek)
  • Stormwater Victoria
  • Merri Creek Management Committee
  • Joe's Garden
  • local community groups such as Friends of the Merri Creek
  • local multicultural groups; and
  • others as identified during the project.

INSPIRE positive change by:

  • recognising key female figures and their connection to the Merri Creek, acknowledging the diversity of communities who enjoy and respect the Merri Creek and its surroundings, by
  • supporting current care for the creek through collaboration with before mentioned stakeholders to improve riparian ecosystems, and
  • by participating in existing activities such as clean-up days, riparian weeding, planting and more.


We thank Water4Good and Eurofins for supporting us with this initiative. 

If you'd like to come on board as a sponsor or have questions, please email

QR code for trailmap to follow... 

Merri Creek stories shared...
Wominjeka to the Merri Creek - Chris Lee & Erin McPherson with input from Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation
Reinhabiting the Merri Creek - Freya Mathews
Building Community - Kasia Zygmuntowicz
A visionary for the Merri Creek - Ann McGregor
Fostering a Ribbon of Magic - Luisa Macmillan
Fertile Ground at Joe's Garden - Emily Connors



20/10/2021 5:00 PM - 22/10/2021 8:00 PM

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