Aboriginal women's business focus of two-year cultural project

Tamworth Aboriginal elder to lead women's business project team

Community
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The project team will be led by Elder Aunty Yvonne Kent from Tamworth.

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Elder Aunty Yvonne Kent will lead the project team for the womens' business venture.

Elder Aunty Yvonne Kent will lead the project team for the womens' business venture.

A new Arts North West project will give Aboriginal women the opportunity to share culturally and historically significant stories.

Women's business is the focus of the new initiative, which will be driven by a project team led by Elder Aunty Yvonne Kent from Tamworth.

Over two years, the team will consult with Aboriginal women in the 12 local government areas in the Arts North West boundary, document research and gather stories of traditional women's practices.

The information will be captured in short films, a book and an art exhibition.

Gunnedah Shire Council's cultural precinct team leader Lauren Mackley is also on the Arts North West board and said she would advocate for women in the region to be involved in the major project.

"It's my role to make sure some of the stories of Gunnedah region will be captured and presented in a really respectful way so that knowledge is shared and the integrity is maintained," she said.

"It's an amazing opportunity for the New England North West region and especially focusing on empowering our female knowledge-holders."

This is a project very close to our hearts, developed by Aboriginal women, for Aboriginal women. - Lorrayne Riggs, 2 Rivers

The project will be delivered by 2 Rivers and managing director Lorrayne Riggs said there were plenty of opportunities for local women to get involved.

"We'll be doing consultation so we can gather as many knowledge holders as we can to make sure the community is well-briefed, and we'll seek feedback from the community in how they would like to do [the project]," Ms Riggs said.

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Ms Riggs said the project concept came about because Indigenous women involved in other Arts North West projects had expressed a desire to see a focus on women's business.

"This is a project very close to our hearts, developed by Aboriginal women, for Aboriginal women," she said.

"We will be able to research and retrace traditional practices and document oral histories that strengthens identity and celebrates key element that make us unique, such as women's practices, gali, food, medicine, kinship responsibilities and healing.

"It's all very exploratory. It's exciting ... We'll do one part at time and weave it all together in the end."

Ms Riggs said community workshop dates would be announced at the end of the week, but "we are open for conversation now".

Arts North West will receive $100,000 from the Australia Council for Arts to help deliver the project.

  • For more information on the project, phone 6732 4988 or email pene@2rivers.com.au

The story Aboriginal women's business focus of two-year cultural project first appeared on The Northern Daily Leader.

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