By Junction Neighbourhood Centre
A new parenting book for Aboriginal families and workers in south east Sydney was launched by the NSW Department of Family and Community Services (FaCS) in conjunction with the Junction Neighbourhood Centre (JNC) at an Aboriginal family day held in Maroubra. Deadly Healthy Bubs is the latest in a series of practical parenting books published by FaCS to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal children.
Katrina Ross, Healthy Bubs Project Officer and Community Capacity Building Coordinator for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities at the JNC organised this event, which was attended by Aboriginal families and workers from the area.
The day included cultural performances by Soldiers Settlement primary schools, Koori dancers and an amazing Didgeridoo performance by Brenden Moore. There were lots of cultural activities for children, including a local favourite, shell work; Koori painting on rocks and canvases; face painting; airbrush tattoos, using Aboriginal art; Didgeridoo painting and workshops; sand art and a colouring corner complete with animals that were drawn as Aboriginal art. There were also yarning circles run by local services for parents. It is not often days like this are available for families, so the JNC was dedicated to providing a great cultural day out for families.
Families involved in the book’s development were presented with a copy and a canvas photographic print of their child as a ‘thank you’ for their participation.
Katrina, who is also a young Aboriginal mum from the area, wanted to highlight the importance of making culturally appropriate information available.
“We wanted to produce something that helps Aboriginal families in south east Sydney connect with their local community and ultimately provide a happier and healthier environment for their children. The books have been a great success, because they were developed locally by local people and have been tailored to suit the cultural differences of each community,” says Katrina.
Originally published in Inner Sydney Voice, Issue 116, Spring 2012