National Endangered Heritage Skills and Trade Show

National Endangered Skills and Trade Show

We live in an era of mass-produced and off-brand products. Anything can be bought at a cheaper price, but cheap does not always equate to good quality, and we are forced to buy replacements when these products inevitably break. This creates a wasteful and expensive cycle. Isn't it more worth it to buy one fifty-dollar top of amazing quality, that can be worn for years, than five ten-dollar tops that tear after a couple of washes? 

This year's National Endangered Skills and Trades Show (NESTS) theme was developed in recognition of this issue. Heritage Trades create products that are meant to last and we believe that they are an essential alternative that will enable us to reduce the waste we create. Traditional trades help promote environmental sustainability in 3 main ways.​

1) Traditional trades use traditional materials which tend to be biodegradable and thus create products that are also biodegradable.

2) Traditional trades offer bespoke solutions to bespoke problems rather than a generic one-size-fits-all option.

3)Traditional trades and skills promote the repairing and enhancing of existing objects. ​

Developed in line with the UNESCO Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), NESTS 2022 raises awareness and “strengthen efforts to protect and safeguard the world’s cultural and natural heritage” (SDG 11.4) as well as illustrate how our heritage trades “reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling, and reuse” (SDG 12.5). Fostering these traditional skills can help us overcome our current environmental and consumption challenges. The key to saving our future is right there in our past.

This event will include demonstrations of these traditional trades and a seminar with speakers from various backgrounds talking to the theme. The seminar will be conducted in the National Museum of Australia on the 14th of October and will be live-streamed for those who are unable to make it in person. The demonstrations will be running on the 14th to the 16th of October at the Kingston Bus Depot.

In organising this event, we wish to acknowledge the First Nations people. For over 60,000 years, the Indigenous community cared for country with land management techniques that worked with the environment. Using traditional techniques and knowledge cultivated throughout generations, they created a system that was both sustainable and supplied them with the resources they needed. There is a lot for us to learn from them in terms of traditional trades that promote environmental sustainability. 

Many indigenous people have been lamenting the loss of their traditional knowledge and trades for over a century. Indigenous skills and trades such as tracking, land management with fire, weaving, and more have been grievously unrecognised and as Australians, we all have a responsibility to protect and preserve this heritage knowledge. This is why we sincerely hope that NESTS will be able to serve as a platform to showcase traders working with both indigenous as well as non-indigenous skills and trades.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in sponsoring or participating in this event.


We hope to see you at the event!