Dubbo Opportunity Hub – DHUB, alongside our friends at Tubba-Gah Wiradjuri Maing Aboriginal Corporation and Red Earth Gallery, recently delivered a weekend of fun activities for a group of young Aboriginal kids from our community, utilising Jinchilla Gardens for its Cultural significance.

With DHUB participants soon heading back to school for 2022, connecting to Country was one of the critical messages incorporated into the weekend. A tour of some fantastic sites of Dubbo kicked off the weekend with a walk through Terramungamine Reserve, where we learned about the Grinding Groves, which are still very present to this day.

The yarns we were flowing when visiting Devils Hole and Jinchilla were very informative. These told the stories of the Traditional Owners and Elders of the Tubba-Gah and Wiradjuri people and how they still influence their families and communities today.

We were honoured to have Brandi Salmon, a highly talented Aboriginal artist zoom in during the activities. Brand’s input inspired Participants to begin crafting artwork of their own to tell a story of their identity, where they are from, who their families are and the different colours and patterns they can use to get their stories across onto a canvas. Some of the fantastic stories presented certainly made us all stop and connect to the Country around us.

Day 2 was a day full of heart-warming Cultural activities with Lewis Burns from Red Earth Gallery hosting the morning with a Welcome to Country in language and sharing his stories with us all through his Didgeridoo playing.

The boys used one of his Didgeridoos and practised with Lewis whilst the girls with Caz and Hailey from our DHUB team collected leaves, feathers and berries they could use on their artworks. With the weekend coming to a close, Lewis took time to teach us all how to throw a Boomerang on the banks of the river; let’s say we all tried very hard before helping the kids finish their artwork for the final storytelling hour.

DHUB developed this weekend intending to strengthen confidence and build self-awareness through art for our Aboriginal youth and to find their voices as our future leaders, and that they did!!

Thank you to our partner Tubba-Gah (maing) Wiradjuri Aboriginal Corporation and Regional NSW for funding this initiative.

We also thank Nathan Frank, Lewis Burns and Brandi Salmon, who lent their guidance throughout the weekend through their stories, art and culture for our young people, and to Aunty Rhonda, who did a fantastic job feeding us all for the two days.

About DHUB

As part of the NSW Government’s OCHRE initiative (Opportunity, Choice, Healing, Responsibility, Empowerment) Bamara will lead the work of the Dubbo Opportunity Hub (DHUB) a program for Aboriginal students in Dubbo and Wellington.