Language not to be lost
NAIDOC Week is fast approaching and there will be a variety of activities happening around town to celebrate Aboriginal culture.
The 2017 theme is Our Languages Matter, aiming to emphasise and celebrate the unique and essential role than indigenous languages play in cultural identity, linking people to their land and water.
They also help with the transmission of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, spirituality and rites through story and song.
Naidoc estimates 120 indigenous languages are spoken across Australia, with many at risk of being lost as Elders pass on.
Committee co-chair Benjamin Mitchell said he hoped the theme shined a spotlight on the groups working to preserve languages. He encouraged all Australians to notice the use of indigenous words in their community to generate a greater appreciation and respect for the significance of local languages.
“Many place names for our suburbs, rivers, mountains and parks are indigenous words,” he said.
“The preservation and revitalisation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages is the preservation of priceless treasure, not just for indigenous peoples but for everyone.” A Naidoc Week children's arts and crafts event will be held at the South Perth Library from 9am to 11am on July 3 and at Manning Library on July 5. Bring your children along to this free craft workshop to celebrate the rich and vibrant indigenous culture. A flag raising ceremony will be held at the flag poles in front of the South Perth Community Hall on July 4 between 10am and 11.30am. The City of South Perth will host a special event with linguist Denise Smith-Ali at South Perth Library on July 11 between 6.30pm and 8.30pm. The City of Belmont is hosting a flag raising ceremony and morning tea on July 3 from 10.30am to noon at the War Memorial in Faulkner Park, Cloverdale. Kensington PCYC will hold a Naidoc Week event at George Street Reserve on July 6 between 9am and 1pm. There will be a climbing wall, sausage sizzle, arts and craft and an indigenous performer. In celebration of Naidoc Week, the community is being invited to the Victoria Park Library for RainForeStation Aboriginal group's contemporary dances on July 7 between 10am and 10.45am. This workshop is facilitated by a trained educational group mentor who will take you into the land of dreaming. Jacaranda Community Centre will host a family fun day at Redcliffe Park with information stalls, a gym bus and more from 11am to 3pm on Tuesday, July 4.