The Maribyrnong River and Waterways Association’s 2023-2026 strategy is a shining example of community engagement and co-design. Recognising the vital role of the local community in safeguarding waterways in the catchment, the association organised a series of two workshops to ensure a collaborative approach. In these workshops, community members, stakeholders, and experts came together to share their diverse perspectives, ideas, and concerns. Through active dialogue a shared vision emerged, reflecting the collective aspirations for the river’s future. The final strategy fosters a sense of ownership and responsibility within the community, uniting them in their commitment to preserving this precious natural resource for generations to come.