Imagine growing up without a family photo album full of stories. Families of Kiwirrikurra have many undocumented stories.
It’s always been expressed that old people who have the knowledge are passing away too soon, and that the newer generation of families need to document the important stuff. This includes place names such as important native water wells, hills & sacred sites along with their stories, plant & animal knowledge’s, foods and languages.
Knowledge is retained best when people are on their Country being taught about it and being practical with skills that are being taught to them.
Jessie, our Strong Young Women's Program Coordinator led a team out on Kiwirrkurra Country where Elders shared their cultural knowledges with their stories. Younger family members were taught about different sites that may be forgotten if young people aren’t learning or standing on those sites.
Families feel excited when they’re on their country talking about things that they want and need. They were expressing concerns and potential loss of knowledge if we don’t act now.
- Jessie Nungarrayi Bartlett
While on-Country, families of Kiwirrkurra began recording stories of the landscape all while capturing good quality photography and videos of the cultural activities being conducted.
It was important to tell and document the stories for each activity, the importance of it and why it should be retained so that it could be taught to future generations and implemented in the day to day lives of Pintupi people of Kiwirrikurra.
This project allowed people to think of how and what important things can be recorded, thinking of innovative ways people can make learning materials and how families can access those materials in a safe way.
With your support we can continue to provide young people with opportunities to learn from their Elders on-Country — the best place to learn about your own culture.
This program was made possible with the support of WA State Government Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries.
Photography by Ben McNamara