Articles

Build Relationships with Community


[Intro music] Jack: There are a lot of Aboriginal people
in your local community. What a lot of schools do is they’ll make contact with
one and then the following year it’s somebody else coming in so then it’s not
a familiar face; nobody can actually build a bigger and better
relationship. It’s the constant contact
year after year that people get more comfortable with. Jack: We’ve cut this off nearly two years ago
and see the tree hasn’t died, it’s still alive. It doesn’t harm the tree at all. Briony: Would this stop a spear do you think? Our Kaurna shield’s scar tree is not far from us,
in the parklands. Jack Buckskin very kindly
came and cut it for the school to see and use, so it is to be in classrooms, handled by the children and visiting the scar tree is a
great point of discussion. Jack: We have a club in our hand, and a shield in our hand… The scar is one of the most significant things. For us the shield was,
it was an object made to be broken. So it never lasts a long time. The scar is one thing that lasts forever. As long as the tree is there,
the scar stays there. So I thought, I’ll try and find the tree close by in case the teachers wanted
to incorporate it into their studies. Jess: Having community members come in and assist
the schools – it might be parents, it might be Elders of the
community, it might be
someone like myself – to have them come in, those kids are then
gonna be able to understand that Aboriginal people are people,
and that we live a lot like others today instead of having us as this thing of the past. Uncle Ken: So we went out in the wild and we collected eight different reeds and rushes of
Boandik Country. It’s our role to make sure
that we can teach the next generation. Tap into some of your local Elders, and encourage them to come along. I often bump into some of the students
down the street, or in town, or out in the country. So we’ve now got a connection. They’ve got a lot of respect for some of
the stories that I’ve been telling them. It’s just lovely to be able to think that we’ve got
people coming on and learning about our culture. Jess: The thing that’s important for services to consider and to understand when they’re connecting
with our community is that the first thing that educators will ask when they meet an Aboriginal person
from their community is “we need this… can you do that?” instead of it just being a relationship, just being. It’s about having a cup of tea
without the expectation that you are needing or wanting something in return. Viv: Bring in community, bring in Elders, make it more
a close thing like someone that knows
somebody they might be able to bring
somebody in, and talk to them and listen. Jack: What I try to leave with people is that this culture of ours, of Aboriginal people, is the culture of Australia. And now that you are a part of
it you have obligations as we do to sustain and maintain this culture and this Country. So I try to make people feel more inclusive and that they have an obligation now
to look after this Country alongside us, not against us.

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