KARI’s Cultural Unit had the opportunity for a group of our young men in Out of Home Care to attend a cultural leadership camp and explore the Murrook Cultural Centre in Williamtown.
The purpose of this camp was for the group to help develop the youth of today into tomorrow’s leaders through cultural mentoring and build strong connections on Worimi country.
The KARI Cultural Unit is dedicated to ensure that all young people in our Foster Care develop a strong connection to their culture and their identity.
The camp itself was a three day and two night experience, which involved a variety of cultural experiences for the youth. Some of the experiences provided on the camp include:
- Aboriginal art
- Aboriginal beading
- Cultural talks
- Cultural tours
- Go to an Indigenous Round NRL game
- Identity workshops
Talks were given on the cultural practices and local knowledge of the Worimi people.
It was a fantastic opportunity for the youth to learn about the local Worimi people and learn their practices.
One talk was about the several midden sites that you are able to find around Williamtown. A midden site is usually the best possible spot where there used to be plenty of shellfish. This spot is usually a pleasant spot that’s easy to get to. Midden sites can have a variety of shellfish remains which will tell you the type of marine environment that was used and the time of year when Aboriginal people used it.
Cultural Unit Coordinator Troy Dargan has said:
Our cultural camps with these young men are about ensuring that they understand the significance of our culture. This is because our culture is the oldest in the world.
They also have to realise the value it adds to them as a person and our country. The camps provide opportunity to gain an understanding and skills to continue to showcase Aboriginal excellence.
The youth got to attend the Newcastle Knights VS Penrith Panthers Indigneous round game, which was a great game. They even managed to catch up with Scott Sattler (not that the boys knew who he was, they’re a bit young).
Another part of the camp involved the identity workshop. The workshop challenged the youth to think about who they are and what they stand for. They were encouraged to think that as well as what their goals in life are.
They also thought about their place in this world and the importance of culture on a person’s identity.
The youth had a great time exploring who they are and learning about their culture while also discovering something new about the Worimi people.
One of our youth said that this was an empowering and spiritual camp. This is because the camp helped them gain a better understanding of who they were as a person. They were excited about continuing to learn more about their culture in the future because they attended this camp.