Peak Hill Red Dust Healing workshop and NAIDOC 2019 award presentation

Neighbourhood Central hosted the Red Dust Healing workshop at the Healing and Learning Centre in Peak Hill on August 21.

Despite it falling on the Peak Hill show day the NAIDOC workshop was such a great success with almost 40 people in attendance, including visitors from Dubbo, Forbes, Parkes and Cowra.

Facilitator and founder of Red Dust Healing Uncle Tom Powell, delivered the program just beautifully, it is a specific cultural healing program written from an Indigenous perspective.

It aims to engage Indigenous men, women and families to recognise and confront problems, hurt and anger in their lives, stemming primarily from rejection and grief.

The program facilitates the understanding of "Rejection" and "Grief and Loss" being the foundation of all hurt.

Participants were encouraged to examine their own personal hurt and allows them to heal from within addressing family and personal relationships and what may have been lifelong patterns of violence, abuse and neglect. Though written from indigenous perspectives Red Dust Healing also targets non indigenous people. Rejection knows no boundaries its the same for young and old, its the same for male and female, its the same for black and white - IT JUST HURTS.

The program places the participant both in the position of being hurt (victim) and then as the one doing the hurting (perpetrator).

The program identifies the emotions felt as the victim and then the hurt caused as the perpetrator.

Participants are asked to examine the similarities and effects this may have had on their lives while growing up and question whether they are repeating the same tactics that may have hurt them.

An example of this is the program outlines and examines the perspectives of two different laws:

LORE is portrayed as our dignity our integrity our power and our freedom. Participants are shown that if you maintain the LORE then it makes the LAW redundant.

In the words of Tom Powell

"When the dust is settled on our lives, all we get to keep and take with us is our dignity, our integrity and the love and respect we shared with people"

This year's NAIDOC theme is VOICE. TREATY. TRUTH.

Working together for a shared future, a special NAIDOC Award presentation took place after the workshop. The NAIDOC award presentation is about recognising the outstanding contributions that Indigenous Australians make to improve the lives of Indigenous people in their communities and beyond, to promote Indigenous issues in the wider community, being an inspiration to their people and community or the excellence they've shown in their chosen field.

This year Shani Hando from the Boomerang Café took out the award for Community person of the year, and Cooper Dart from Peak Hill Central School was nominated as Youth of the year.

Other nominees included:

Christine Peckham, Pam Keed and David Naden.

Jada Read, Malachi Dart and Bella Read.

Neighbourhood Central would like to thank Tom Powell for delivering such a wonderful workshop to the community and their sponsors Inlink , Aboriginal Affairs and the Orana Weigilli hub project staff for their valuable contributions which made the day a success.