Celebrating indigenous culture

LOCAL primary school students learnt about indigenous culture as part of a cultural awareness program run by Greening Australia on Friday.

As part of National Reconciliation Week, more than 120 children from five primary schools worked with two indigenous presenters on bush tucker, storytelling, dancing, spear throwing and other aspects of indigenous culture.

Held at Marlay Point on the banks of the Gippsland Lakes, Gunaikurnai elder Alfie Hudson and indigenous artist Cassia Harrap got the children engaged, providing them with a better understanding of the culture of local indigenous people.

Greening Australia Gippsland regional manager, Martin Potts, said the program aimed to inform students about aspects of indigenous culture common throughout the region.

“The aim of the day was for students to learn more about the local Aboriginal people and their culture, the Gunaikurnai, learn more about their local environment, especially indigenous plants and animals, and produce an art-work based on the symbols of the Gunaikurnai people,” he said.

As the day progressed students used Gunaikurnai symbols and some of the bush tucker and plants they had learnt about to create an art work with Alfie Hudson telling a story about Lake Wellington and people’s connection to it.

“Greening Australia has a strong focus on engagement with young people to learn about being custodians of landscapes for the future, and we see having a deep understanding of the culture of a location as being central to that,” Mr Potts said.