What’s On [Melbourne]: Where the Water Starts will have its Melbourne premiere at MDFF

Aboriginal Narjong water healing Murrumbidgee Aboriginal reclaim Kosci Snowy Mountains.

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Investigating the destruction of the fragile alpine ecology of Australia’s Snowy Mountains, Where the Water Starts will celebrate it’s Melbourne premiere at the upcoming in-cinema component of the Melbourne Documentary Film Festival.

Richard Swain, Indigenous Ambassador with the Invasive Species Council, witnessed first hand the damage caused by feral horses in KNP; their impacts threaten the habitats and livelihood of 34 alpine species, 11 animals and 23 plant species.

Where The Water Starts reveals the unique threats to the fragile alpine ecology of Australia’s Snowy Mountains, featuring the voices of Indigenous and non-Indigenous community leaders. They’re concerned about the devastating environmental challenges facing the headwaters of 3 iconic rivers in this precious region, and what must be done to protect it.


The film takes the audience on a discovery tour of the Snowy Mountains from perspectives rarely heard. Richard Swain, a Wiradjuri descendant who was born in Cooma and raised in the high country, is a strong, passionate voice in the film. Despite speaking out on this controversial issue and receiving the acrimony that comes with it, his message is ultimately one that invites all Australians to be caring of the environment.

Over generations, the landscape has been degraded. Hard-hoofed animals, particularly horses are trampling the unique habitats of these threatened species and endangering the viability of the headwaters of the iconic Snowy, Murrumbidgee and Murray rivers. The massive bushfires of 2019-2020 burned vast swathes of Kosciuszko National Park, highlighting the context of climate change.

Where The Water Starts highlights the voices of a range of respected Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, giving insight into the vital ecological, cultural and historical context of the themes in the film. These different perspectives come together to illustrate that the best of Aboriginal connection and the best of regenerative science can work together for a better future for the mountains and the planet.

Where The Water Starts will screen at the Melbourne Documentary Film Festival on Saturday, 23 July at 5.15pm. Details here



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