NAIDOC Week is fast approaching and there is a variety of activities happening around Armadale and Gosnells from July 2 to 9 to celebrate Aboriginal culture.
The 2017 theme is Our Languages Matter, aiming to emphasise and celebrate the unique and essential role that indigenous languages play in cultural identity, linking people to their land and water.
They also help with the transmission of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, spirituality and rites through story and song.
Naidoc estimates 120 indigenous languages are currently spoken in Australia but many are at risk of being lost as Elders pass on.
Committee co-chair Benjamin Mitchell said he hoped the theme would shine a spotlight on the groups working to preserve languages, and encouraged all Australians to notice the use of indigenous words in their community to generate a greater appreciation and respect for the significance of local languages.
“Nationally, many place names for our suburbs, rivers, mountains and parks are indigenous language words,” Mr Mitchell said.
“The preservation and revitalisation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages –- the original languages of this nation – is the preservation of priceless treasure, not just for indigenous peoples, but for everyone.”
Some events will require bookings.
List of events
Flag raising ceremony: Gosnells Civic Centre, 11am-1pm, Monday July 3
NAIDOC Art Exhibition: Amherst Library Art Nook & Gosnells Civic Centre, Tuesday July 4-Friday July 7
Celebration Day & youth festival: Bob Blackburn Reserve, 10am-3pm, Tuesday July 4
Paint Storm, Don Russell Performing Arts Centre, 10.30am & 1.30pm (workshop at 11.30am), Tuesday July 4
Book-making session, Seville Grove Library, 11am-3pm, Tuesday July 4
Aboriginal storytelling sessions: Amherst Village Library, 1pm-2pm, Tuesday July 4; Gosnells Knowledge Centre, 1pm-2pm, Wednesday July 5; Kenwick Library, 1pm-2pm, Thursday July 6; Thornlie Library, 10am-11am, Friday July 7
Traditional dot painting workshop: Thornlie Library, 4pm-5pm, Tuesday July 4
NAIDOC sports play: Brookman Primary School, 10am-12pm, Thursday July 6
NAIDOC art play: Richard Rushton Community Centre, 10am-12pm, Friday July 7
NAIDOC Week breakfast: Langford Aboriginal Association, 9am-11.30am, Sunday July 9