Western Aboriginal people stars of the big screen
WESTERN Aboriginal elders, knowledge-holders and students are
appearing in the Through our Eyes
series of 44 short films screening outdoors at Sydney University during the
The screening coincides with Reconciliation Week (May 27 to June
Western Local Land Services Aboriginal communities officer,
Blackie Gordon, says he’s delighted the films have drawn strong interest.
“Having these films screen in Sydney as part of this
festival is very exciting as it continues to pass on the Aboriginal cultural
knowledge of the Barkindji, Malyankapa, Ngemba, Kamilaroi and Euahlayi people
to a wider audience,” says Mr Gordon.
“These films are just one part of the work Western Local
Land Services is doing to engage with Aboriginal communities and strengthen the
cultural significance of our region.
“We have a range of programs that increase cultural
awareness and understanding of the issues of importance to Aboriginal people,
particularly through their connection to country and the responsibility they
feel for the land.”
Programs in recent months have included participation in
cultural burning workshops to increase people’s knowledge about the way
Aboriginal people traditionally used fire to improve soil and vegetation
Western Local Land Services has also partnered with the
Barkindji Maurara Elders’ Environmental Team to undertake a youth traineeship
program at Dareton, near Wentworth, to help young Aboriginal people gain
employment skills in the horticultural industry.
A concert that attracted more than 300 people to Mungo
National Park last week was a further step in building a better understanding
of the connection to country in the area, says Mr Gordon.
Well-known and respected Aboriginal singer and songwriter,
Archie Roach, performed at the concert, where he spoke about how he uses music
to express his spiritual connection to country.
“Western Local Land Services isn’t limited to providing
services to landholders,” says Mr Gordon.
“We work with a wide range of people including Aboriginal
people to ensure a healthy and productive environment.”
Aboriginal people comprise about 15 per cent of the
population of the Western Division.
There are 16 Aboriginal language groups identified and many sites of
cultural significance including the Brewarrina Fish Traps, Mount Grenfell,
Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area, Lake Victoria, Mount Hope and the Mutawintji