GUESTS braved the rain on Monday to take part in the City of Joondalup’s flag raising ceremony to launch its month of Naidoc celebrations.
Naidoc Week, which runs until July 9, is this year themed Our Languages Matter.
“The theme emphasises and celebrates the unique and essential role that Indigenous languages play in cultural identity,” Mayor Troy Pickard said.
“Language is not just about how we communicate, it also links people to their home, their land, their place, their identity.
“Sadly today, only less than half of the approximately 250 distinct Indigenous language groups that existed across Australia at the time of European settlement are still spoken today.”
The ceremony started with a Welcome to Country from Shaun Nannup, before he, Mayor Troy Pickard, Burns Beach MLA Mark Folkard and Superintendent Paul Dallimore raised the Australian, WA, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags.
Then Maitland Schnaars and Karla Hart, from Yirra Yaarkin Theatre Company, performed two Shakespearean sonnets in Nyungar language.
Guests were then invited to view artist Charmaine Cole’s exhibition Whadjuk’s Kallip at the Joondalup Art Gallery.
Other activities this month include the Lake Joondalup virtual reality project, created by North Metropolitan Tafe students and local cultural leader Dennis Simmons to show the lake as it was 10,000 years ago.
Yirra Yaakin will perform children’s theatre show Boodjar Kaatijin at Prendiville Catholic College on July 14, teaching traditional stories about how the land was created.
On July 16, Aboriginal jazz diva Lois Olney will present Red Earth, Blue Sky as part of Sunday Serenades and on July 23, film The Sapphires will screen at Prendiville Catholic College.
City of Joondalup Naidoc celebrations
– Until July 28 – Lake Joondalup virtual reality project
– Until July 28 – Charmaine Cole’s exhibition Whadjuk’s Kallip
– July 14 – Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company presents Boodjar Kaatijin
– July 16 – Red Earth, Blue Sky by Lois Olney
– July 23 – The Sapphires film screening