Women share sto­ries of strength

Pilbara News - - News - Court­ney Fowler

■ The sev­enth an­nual Strong Beau­ti­ful Women’s Din­ner pro­vided a cel­e­bra­tion of cul­ture, com­mu­nity and good health at the Nor-West Jockey Club last Thurs­day.

Mangabura Gu­ma­gar­rigu, which means Strong Beau­ti­ful Women Gath­er­ing, was con­cep­tu­alised in 2007 by se­nior Ngar­luma el­der Vi­o­let Sam­son.

This year more than 300 women at­tended the gala din­ner — the largest turnout in the event’s history.

Nanna Vi­o­let, as she is known in the com­mu­nity, started the event to en­cour­age pos­i­tive net­work­ing, cul­tural learn­ing and to give women from dif­fer­ent Abo­rig­i­nal lan­guage groups and non-in­dige­nous women a chance to yarn.

“It’s a big job, be­ing a women in this com­mu­nity — we look af­ter our fam­i­lies, en­sure the kids go to school and carry the hurt and prob­lems in­side,” she said.

“This is the time we need to share to­gether, talk about is­sues, sup­port and help one another as much as we can in this com­mu­nity.

“The women’s din­ner, it’s grow­ing more ev­ery year. It makes me proud, you know.”

Ms Sam­son’s daugh­ter, Josie, was MC at this year’s event along with a great line-up of lo­cal mo­ti­va­tional speak­ers, while guests were treated to a tra­di­tion­ally inspired buf­fet din­ner un­der the stars. Lo­cal women also were called to the stage to share their life ex­pe­ri­ences with the au­di­ence.

Josie Alec, who was one of the last of the stolen gen­er­a­tion out of Roe­bourne, said she owed all her re­cent suc­cess to the “strong women” in her life.

“When I fi­nally came back to Roe­bourne, I found my way back to my mum and my cul­ture,” she said.

“It is what has driven me to do ev­ery­thing I’ve done since com­ing home — I be­came a teacher ... I’ve worked with the old girls at Big Hart, acted in the pro­duc­tion Hip­bone Stick­ing Out and played a part in the Blue Dog movie.

“The strength I’ve got from com­ing back here has given me ev­ery­thing I needed to move for­ward from my past and I’ve now cre­ated my own busi­ness, Indi­jiArts.”

The event was capped off with live en­ter­tain­ment, danc­ing and games, with Nanna Pansy tak­ing the ti­tle of best dressed for a sec­ond year. The din­ner was sup­ported by Rio Tinto and the Wood­side-op­er­ated North West Shelf Pro­ject and many lo­cal busi­nesses.

Pic­tures: Court­ney Fowler

Su­san Standen and Glen Slee.

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