The Undalup Festivals will replace what was known as Tribal Mix and will involve a range of exciting new events which will grow as the association becomes more recognised, experienced and successful. Each festival planned will take place during one of the six Noongar cultural seasons. The first such festival is the Birak Festival to be held on Saturday 14th January, 2017.
It has now been four years since the last Tribal Mix and many of us enjoyed creating a unique event which was given international recognition when members Wendy Slee and Rachelle Cousins created a Tribal Mix slide show.
Over the years the event has featured some great artists, and the event attracted many people to the region, with many famous Australian Aboriginal people in the crowd.
In our community today we have many Aboriginal people who still live the culture and strive to keep it alive on a daily basis. One of the many benefits of staging an event such as the Birak Festival is for local Aboriginal people to have the opportunity to showcase their Culture to the rest of the world. The event increases the awareness to the wider community and creates an acceptance of the local Culture whilst creating harmony between all involved.
The Undalup Youth Committee is an important new group in our community, as it is for our youth. Our team leader encourages our younger members of the community to participate in many of the ongoing projects, events, activities and workshops, learning new skills, building confidence and self-esteem, with learning capabilities in event management, youth leadership and mentorship.
The youth committee will learn to develop and organise their own events and activities for the local young people, encouraging greater participation of our young people in a range of community projects, promoting the Act – Belong – Commit message, to be delivered and understood by our youth.
Being active, having a sense of belonging, and having a purpose in life all contribute to happiness and good mental health.
The Undalup Association sub-committee for the community projects covers a large area for our community. Members are passionate about these projects with many opportunities to improve individual and community well-being. As the Undalup Association has now partnered with ABC, together the sub-committee projects can be of great benefit to our community, supporting the message for a Mentally Healthy WA.
The Undalup Association offers many opportunities for mentally healthy engagement and aims to improve individual and community well-being for us all. Undalup Association members are keen to change the way people think about mental health. Raising awareness together through activities, community projects, and events can promote good mental health, reducing the stigma associated with mental illness, and in turn build a more Mentally Healthy WA.
NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
The Undalup Association Chairperson, Iszaac Webb and Board members Wayne and Toni Webb, lead the NRM team and working party. The Noongar people have a long association with the environment of the South West and its natural resources.The Noongar people utilise the natural resources according to their lore, to look after Noongar Boodja (Country). NRM is based on a great deal of research; it is the sustainable management of natural resources, our land, water, marine and biological systems and helping protect our environment’s well-being.
UNDALUP RANGER PROGRAMME
The Undalup Ranger Programme is designed to work together with DPaW, South West Catchment Council, Geo Catch, Landcare, Busselton Police, Justice South West and the like, to have youth participation and members of the community engaged. The program is primarily aimed at the youth in the justice system and those in diversion programs from the courts. This program will also provide many benefits to those involved, offering support and learning respect, whilst out on Country with the Undalup Rangers and local divisional officers will assist and help with the transition of the individual.
The Undalup Ranger Program will seek activities to achieve their goals which may include:
Beach patrol - all participants will walk a designated two-kilometre section of the local coastline with an Undalup Association ranger/team leader, and collect and record the rubbish and debris on our beaches;
Participate in work required for Landcare and waterway projects in the community;
Participate in cleaning the community road side and verges of rubbish and debris, recording and collecting data;
A clean-up crew also available during and after events;
All participants to attend Respect workshops and training.
Maintain Cultural areas by undertaking a variety of tasks such as, Graffiti recording and removal, recording Cultural values, maintain Cultural safety protocols,
Engage with Visitors / Locals, sharing the Cultural knowledge and traditions.
The Ranger Program promotes the empowering our Aboriginal people to harness their traditional knowledge, connection to country and access to modern scientific conservation methods is a win/win for the environment and the wellbeing of communities and individuals.
Currently the Undalup Association members are working on some funding opportunities to provide the Association with a bus. The Undalup Bus would benefit the Association, and in turn the community, in many ways. Providing transport for:
Working parties involved in community work;
To attend cross-cultural awareness training workshops and events;
Local heritage surveys conducted in the region with local Aboriginal Elders and Cultural custodians;
Community youth work conducted by the Association, for those attending workshops and outings at surrounding towns and communities;
Undalup Association Cultural dance groups, to participate at other events and celebrations in regional areas;
To be available for hire for any other community groups and organisations that seeks transport to venues and regional projects.
A vision of the Undalup Bus, such as that pictured, could create many other opportunities within the Association as many of the associations projects come to fruition.
Indigenous tourism has many opportunities for visitors to engage with Aboriginal people and experience their culture. It is the aim of the Undalup Association to facilitate the development of these experiences and support growth in the South West region’s Aboriginal tourism industry.
The Undalup Association aims to develop and promote Aboriginal culture through events and tourism as a sustainable tourism experience and recognises the importance of partnering with Aboriginal people to achieve outcomes which have social and economic benefits for Aboriginal communities.
Joint venture partnerships encourage the incorporation of Aboriginal tourism into the broader mainstream arena. This broadens the target audience, encourages package opportunities with other industry partners, and adds value to the overall tourism experience.
The Undalup Association will benefit by working with the WAITOC, the Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council, which is an autonomous not for profit Association comprising representatives from the five tourism regions within Western Australia, providing advice and information to all relevant State Government agencies. The Council also plays a role in assisting the development of a dynamic Aboriginal tourism industry sector in WA by helping existing and emerging Aboriginal tourism operators.
Undalup Associations membership with WAITOC will benefit the community events and workshops we plan, thru advertisement and promotion on the WAITOC website, newsletters and events calendar, giving many opportunities to develop collaborative and joint ventures for the Aboriginal and non- Aboriginal tourism industry with international recognition of providing Aboriginal Cultural to all visitors and tourists to the region
UNDALUP ABORIGINAL COMMUNITY:
As the Undalup Association has many Aboriginal members and the main focus of the association is the Culture, the people and the Cultural traditions. The Undalup Aboriginal committee gives many opportunities for our members to provide Cultural events, workshops and activities for the community, celebrating the many days that recognise our Aboriginal History and Culture.
Our Elders are well respected in the community; they are a good point of contact for decision making and are often the people who decide on enforcement of Cultural protocols.
Aboriginal consultation and protocols must be respected within the community, working together, passing the knowledge onto the new generation who are learning and experiencing through Cultural events and traditions, the knowledge, language, stories, music and art lives on, strengthening the Noongar Culture, Heritage and society.
The Undalup Aboriginal members have ownership over the projects, events and activities they organise, assisting the community in Cultural awareness workshops, training, and working together on the Undalup RAP. The Undalup Reconciliation Action Plan will create meaningful relationships and provide many opportunities for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Australians.
The Aboriginal Community have no currant association available to them, The Undalup Association provides support and an association that will assist them with all projects, events and workshops, working together to benefit the community.
Showing Respect and Acknowledgement to our Aboriginal people, working together, we can learn and educate ourselves about the connection that we all have with Mother Earth knowing its value that keeps us together.
The symbolic meaning of the flag colours: (as stated by Harold Thomas) is;
Black-represents the Aboriginal people of Australia,
Yellow- represents the sun, the giver of life and protector,
Red- represents the red earth, the red ochre used in ceremonies and Aboriginal Spiritual relation to the
“Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming after all, is a form of planning.” Gloria Steinem
The Undalup Association film committee is still in the early days of construction, with many stories to be told from the South West, the Aboriginal history and Culture needs to be brought to life thru film. With many famous Aboriginal actors being from our area seeking the opportunity to come home and be a part of the production of these documentaries and stories that need to be shared Australia wide.
With Cinefest Oz Film Festival showcasing the many Aboriginal movies, documentaries and short stories as a part of the indigifestoz event, this will provide many opportunities for the Undalup association to work together on upcoming projects to be showcased at the annual Cinefest Oz festival.
The Undalup Association Action Plan is to have a local venue available to all community members to use. This venue could be used for meetings, workshops, art and craft classes and the like. The facilities need to ensure a safe and welcoming environment to all those in need of support/advice, and an opportunity to feel at ease with life’s challenges. Knowing someone cares and can help with a friendly ear, offering a positive inclusive and neutral environment is essential. A venue ideal for our future needs is the old Visitors Centre, currently the City of Busselton’s reception office, a centre that would benefit us all.
Some other ideas for the future actions for Undalup Association to consider includes:
To promote healing for many groups within the local area;
Promote reconciliation by being a place of two-way learning;
Build bridges for affected families;
Share knowledge and connect with the Busselton community;
Promote hope and opportunities;
Volunteers running the centre and the programmes offered therein.
The Undalup Association understands the need for such a centre in our community as Busselton has been recorded (in 2014) with the highest suicide rate in Regional Western Australia. Busselton also has a huge drug and alcohol addiction problem prevalent throughout the community.
A gaping hole exists for:
The need for support programmes for those with alcohol and drug related problems; and
A support centre for family and friends of people affected by these issues;
A suicide awareness and prevention programme; and
A support group for those affected by the tragedy of losing a loved one.
The need to work with our local church groups, ministers and chaplains, having a central base for the night workers of the churches in our community who are currently providing help and support for the community’s homeless and street kids.