A day of celebration at Jamison Park NAIDOC

16-NAIDOC-logo-stackedI typed into google ‘why is NAIDOC important’ and this quote from Newcastle-based Aboriginal elder Aunty Sandra Griffin  came up “”It’s absolutely beautiful; you get together and it’s definitely a day of celebration and I love it!”

Jamison Park NAIDOC Family event on Friday 8th July was certainly a day of togetherness and celebration and all who came along loved it.

The weather was not kind to us and it remained cold and wet for most of the day, but in the NCNS cultural tent it was warm and dry.

[pullquote align=”right”] “The mood in the cultural tent was wonderful, fabulous music and workshops. It was a great meeting place”.[/pullquote]

“NCNS was one of the original partners that helped create Jamison NAIDOC 12 years ago. It is now one of the biggest celebrations in Sydney during NAIDOC week, with attendance around 5,000. It’s been a wonderful thing to see the event grow and flourish” said NCNS General Manager, Joy Impiombato.

Each year, NAIDOC Week celebrations highlight the rich and diverse culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, the First Australians. NAIDOC Week celebrations and community events are a great opportunity for all members of our community to come together and acknowledge the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

At NCNS we feel privileged that we can be part of providing an opportunity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, along with members of the community, to engage in cultural learning and activities.

NCNS has run the cultural tent for a number of years and this year featured many interactive workshops. Tracey taught us traditional weaving and John, who travelled from Far West NSW, taught the boys and young men how to play the didge while the girls learnt how to use the clapping sticks.

NAIDOC1 One of the highlights was an hour of storytelling from Wiradjuri man Larry Brandy. “I am passionate about my Wiradjuri culture and enjoy encouraging participants to join in with me as I demonstrate how Wiradjuri people used to hunt and find food. I use real artefacts as well as animal masks to encourage participants to join in” says Larry. “It was storytelling like I’ve never seen before, the audience actually became part of the story and acted out the various parts” said Joy. “The storytelling culminated in a Corroboree style celebration for all, it was just wonderful”.

We also screened the 5 episodes of Kasey is Missing to a full house … well tent! We are proud of this 5 part drama and the local community members who starred in it, particularly Aunty Mary and Deb Shepherd.

We are already planning our activities for 2017 and look forward to seeing you all at the cultural tent, as together we share and learn about the oldest culture in the world.