Stay tuned for reports on DEG's work with Yuwaya Ngarrali re our ACTIONs leading from the Forum.
Dharriwaa Elders Group (DEG) will not support Walgett Social and Emotional Wellbeing projects that have been developed by external agencies without DEG.
DEG's Speaker Clem Dodd, Secretary Virginia Robinson and Project Manager Wendy Spencer travelled to Sydney to attend the NSW Law and Justice Foundation's NSW Justice Awards dinner
DEG Elders started receiving phone calls in the morning of 2 December 2016 from excited Elders who had heard news reports of a NSW Government response to the need for reparations for NSW Stolen Generations.
Dharriwaa Elders Group members considered results of test aerial photo surveys undertaken near Walgett by supporters from ProUAV combined with DEG's own ground survey efforts.
NSW Environmental Defenders Office has been supporting Dharriwaa Elders Group to manage Aboriginal Cultural Heritage values around Walgett.
DEG judged the entries in its Aboriginal Language sections of the 2016 Walgett Show for Infants, Primary and High Schools in May.
David Tribe, a school teacher in Walgett in the late 1950s, early 1960s, visited Walgett in May 2016.
While he was here he met with some of his students, who are now members of Dharriwaa Elders Group.
Curator Alison Williams visited DEG the week of the 11 April, to survey and discuss DEG's contribution to the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage and Arts Association ("ACHAA") exhibition
During the week beginning 11 April 2016, DEG hosted and promoted the Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations in Walgett to undertake a Cultural Use and Occupancy Mapping project.
Dharriwaa Elders Group's Secretary Virginia Robinson made an important speech to the community on Wednesday 13 April 2016.
A Dharriwaa Elders Group party visited Orana Haven rehabilitation service near Brewarrina, 7 April 2016, as part of our research for developing a Social and Emotional Wellbeing Plan for Walgett - ie the "Moving Forwards to Healthier Communities" Framework. There we met with Manager Norm Henderson and learnt about the needs of Aboriginal people when they are learning new ways of living, away from their communities and substance abuse. We were very impressed with their set up now and affirmed in DEG's growing view that a purpose-built detox unit is needed for Walgett Hospital, and of the increasing need for rehabilitation facilities generally, especially for Aboriginal youth and women, near Walgett. Our belief in the need for further support services for clients after they leave rehab, and for their families, was also confirmed.
The NSW Parliament General Purpose Standing Committee No. 3 visited Walgett 18 February 2016 to conduct a hearing for its Inquiry into reparations for the Stolen Generations of NSW.
DEG gathered Elders the day before, to prepare for giving evidence at the 17/2/16 Walgett hearing of the NSW Legislative Committee's Inquiry into Reparations for the Stolen Generations of NSW.
DEG's Chairperson Clem Dodd with staff Wendy Spencer and Kim Sullivan visited protestors at Santos's construction site of a water processing plant for Coal Seam Gas mining waste water, at Leewood near Narrabri, 5 February 2016. Walgett Elders had expressed growing concern after hearing radio reports the day before about women Elders being rough-handled there by police, and wanted to visit the protestors to offer moral support. Once it came to leaving Walgett that morning, the numbers wanting to travel had reduced, but Clem, Wendy and Kim decided to go anyway, investigate the situation and report back to the others.
The DEG crew arrived at around 12.30pm and found a small group of men and women waiting at the entrance gate to Leewood, after police had entered the property two hours previously. Two brave women - Jo Birtus and Jen Philips, had chained themselves inside the property in the early hours of the morning. We couldn't see them as a ring of Santos vehicles circled the women some 500m away from the gate, blocking our view of them. We just hoped they were safe. We unpacked the food we brought and shared it around. After a quick bite and yarn, Santos vehicles and a police paddy wagon left the property travelling towards Narrabri. The women waved their fingers out the air vents in the paddy waggon, as they passed us on the road, to let us know they were inside. We all gave them a cheer so they knew we were supporting them. We then packed up our car, said our goodbyes and headed back to Walgett via Narrabri, where we planned to call in at the police station to check the women were OK - as we assumed they had been arrested. As we drove to the nearby highway, we saw that the women had been released. We parked and introduced ourselves. The women said they had decided to release themselves after giving a short talk and being chained there for around 4 hours in non-violent protest.