2023 National NAIDOC Week
Posted on July 3, 2023
This year’s NAIDOC Week theme, ‘For Our Elders’ holds a special place in our hearts here at Juniper.
With Residential Aged Care Homes and Home and Community Care services scattered across the Kimberley region, Juniper harbours profound respect and appreciation for the culturally diverse communities we serve.
To celebrate and acknowledge the importance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture in the Juniper community, during NAIDOC Week we will be sharing incredible yarns from some of our residents and clients in Derby, Kununurra and Fitzroy Crossing.
Some reflect on what it means to be an Elder, while others remember the important role that Elders played in their own lives.
We believe it’s important to share the wisdom, lived experience and voices of Aboriginal peoples and hope that their stories shine a light on the role Elders play in their communities.
Juniper Kununurra Community Centre
Anne loves living in Kununurra, and her favourite food is barramundi and black bream. She loved going up to Kelly’s Knob loockout to enjoy views of the town.
Anne said this year’s NAIDOC theme, For Our Elders, is very special to her as it brings back “memories of the old people that have passed away.”
She fondly reflects on the Elders in her life – “my mum, aunties and grandmothers” – and speaks of how she loves sitting down to talk with them and hear their stories which she can pass onto her children.
Born in Alice Springs, Alan grew up on cattle stations in the Northern Territory and in the Kimberley.
From a young age, he worked as a stockman, then went on to run a camps which included mustering, riding horses, fencing and maintaining windmills.
He moved to Kununurra with his late wife many years ago. They had one son together, Alan Junior.
Jack was born in Peppimenarti in the Daly River region of the Northern Territory.
As a boy he lived with his family near Old Halls Creek. To Jack, the NAIDOC theme “For Our Elders” is about recognition for all the years of hard work in raising their own children and now looking after their grandchildren.
Jack said: “We can’t forget them and what they have done for us.”
Growing up in Wyndham, Owen’s father is from Noonkanbah near Fitzroy Crossing, while his mother’s side is from Oombulgurri.
“When I was young I went to Nulla Nulla Station and Oombulgurri way to make money as a bull catcher,” he said.
Owen’s wife has passed away, but he has adult children who come to visit him sometimes in Kununurra.
Owen said the For Our Elders NAIDOC Week theme reminds him of significant role Elders played in his own life.
“I remember my elders teaching me to look after myself…they taught me to be good. I enjoy sharing my stories with the young ones.”