Nowra event focuses on children

Boori Preschool at Nowra was a hive of activity on Monday as National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day was celebrated.

The day is the largest national day to celebrate children, with one of the organisers, an early linker with the South Coast Medical Service Aboriginal Corporation, Wendy Bolt saying as the name suggests the day was all about children.

Children from a variety of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander preschools, long day care and playgroups came together for a special gathering.

“The day is aimed at getting all the children together,” Ms Bolt said.

“We have children from groups run by Waminda, Cullunghutti, Noah’s and Boori.”

The theme of the event Value Our Rights, Respect Our Culture, Bring Us Home.

The event was a chance for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children to learn about their culture.

“It’s a chance to get all the kids together and celebrate Aboriginal culture,” Ms Bolt said.

The day started with a wonderful opening by Aunty Pat Seymour and included a number of activities.

Brooke Joy from Lifestart, a language teacher from the University of Sydney, read a book in her South Australian language, which was also key signed, the Drumbeat Program was popular, as was the face painting by Waminda and the petting zoo by Shoalhaven Zoo.

“Through one South Coast Medical Service Aboriginal Corporation programs we use animals with children who may have a disability or behavioural issues,” Ms Bolt said.

“The animals are used to teach the kids about their emotions and also how to regulate and self regulate their behaviour.”

Dancing and songs were presented by Cullunghutti, while Wreck Bay and Noah’s presented local languages, Dharug and Dharawal.

There was also a gunyah building demonstration and Koori culture with the National Parks and Wildlife Service and Timbery’s Cultural Consultancy Group.