NAIDOC Jamison Park – Because of Her, We Can!

Every year, our cultural tent at the NAIDOC Jamison Park event is an amazing cultural experience for all of those who attend the day and this year was no different. We created a spectacular display of photographs of our Aboriginal staff with the important women in their life honouring this year’s theme, “Because of her, we can!”

Tracie Harris educated the audience about Aboriginal Artefacts each painted with beautiful Aboriginal designs including:

  • the Woomera – a spear thrower used to launch a spear at a greater speed and force than using the human arm – traditionally used by men
  • the Coolamon – traditionally used by Aboriginal women to carry water, fruit, nuts and babies
  • the Bullroarer – what Tracie describes as a ‘bush telephone’, used to communicate over great distances
  • Clap sticks – as the name suggests, the sticks are used by striking one stick on another and used as a musical instrument traditionally accompanied by the didgeridoo

Children and community got to create their own necklaces using faux leather cord by threading it with assorted pieces of wood cuttings.

Larry Brandy amused the room with his storytelling, children gazing in wonder, enthused by his tales. Possum & Wallaby skins went around the room, so everyone got to feel the warmth they provided and giving children an insight into how Aboriginal Australians lived in the past.

Larry explained to the crowd that Aboriginal boys used to remain with their mother until they were 13 and then would join their fathers hunting. The men would use spears to kill animals but the boys, because of their agility and speed would chase the animals and club them in the head. Larry then rounded up the children; the girls put on masks becoming emus while the boys were given clubs and became hunters in a re-enactment of the story.

Larry then described how boomerangs were used to catch ducks. The men would throw boomerangs at the ducks on the water to make them think that it was a predator bird trying to attack, and as they scattered they would use their hand made nets to capture them. Again, Larry got the kids more involved by getting them up and acting it out.

Koomurri provided a cultural experience with a didgeridoo show, storytelling, artefacts, weaponry, Aboriginal song and dance, and Aboriginal face painting with white clay.

To end the day, we ran a “Because of her, we can!” Pamper session as a token of our appreciation and celebration of the significant role that Aboriginal women have played and continue to play in their communities.

We would like to thank Tracie Harris, Larry Brandy, Koomurri, the ladies who provided the pamper session, as well as all our our staff for their hard work and support in this year’s cultural tent. Thank you to all of the community that came along, participated,  shared and celebrated Aboriginal culture with us. Lastly a massive shout out to Trudy Grant, our Aboriginal Community Coordinator who always organises and puts together all the pieces that make up our Cultural tent, it’s “Because of her, we can!”

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