Preserve, Strengthen and Renew - AIATSIS visit to Canberra

Karajarri Traditional Lands Association
Karajarri Traditional Lands Association
Karajarri Traditional Lands Association
Workshop Presentation.jpg

By Wynston Shovellor - Sesar: Between the 12th and 15th March, KTLA sent a team of rangers and members to the AIATSIS office in Canberra. Wynston Shovellor - Sesar, Petha Farrer - Shoveller, Anna Dwyer and Mervyn Mulardy Jr visited AIATSIS as part of one of their research pilot projects 'Preserve, Strengthen and Renew in Community'. On the first day, we had an introduction session with AIATSIS, and other organisations and language groups, where we sat around the table introducing ourselves. Karajarri and Kiwirrkurra are the two main case study groups that are working closely with AIATSIS on recording new stories, and returning old materials to the groups. We then visited the AIATSIS head office where we looked through some of our old documented materials and prepared a presentation for the following day.

On the second day, we presented our Karajarri Wangkai Muwarr presentation. It was Petha’s first time public speaking to 50+ people. The audience was made up of researchers, academics, institutions and language groups. Our presentation was about the work we did with AIATSIS but it also included some of our revitalisation projects with Yawuru. We also listened to the Kiwirkurra presentation about what they’ve been doing with AIATSIS in recording stories and media training.

On day three, Wangka Maya & IBN presented on their work – who they are, what they do, and what challenges they have. We shared ideas on what might help their organisations. Some of us, including the Karajarri team, did some role plays in the room, acting out a story of how the process works at AIATSIS in releasing private documents and consultation with the Aboriginal community to approve the usage of materials. We then finished up with breaking into groups and discussing situations and challenges that each language group and organisation struggles with in Western Australia. It was a great experience for us, especially for Petha to be a part of the whole week event, to connect, learn and observe the knowledge and understanding of how AIATSIS and language groups work with each other.