Active Citizen Program participants learn about Rotary Peace Precinct

WORKING TOGETHER: The Active Citizen Program in action at the Rotary Peace Precinct in Parkes - from left, Trudy Richardson (Parkes), Ty Jones (Forbes), Kiara Harris (Condobolin), Baiden Forster (Forbes), Jayden Pope (Parkes), Charlie Oraha from Parkes (back), Kevin Read (Aboriginal liaison officer), Billie O'Bryan (Condobolin), Kaiden Atkinson (Condobolin), youth officer Senior Constable Daniel Greef, Sarah Williams (Forbes Shire Council youth officer) and Jake Smith (Forbes). Photo: Christine Little
WORKING TOGETHER: The Active Citizen Program in action at the Rotary Peace Precinct in Parkes - from left, Trudy Richardson (Parkes), Ty Jones (Forbes), Kiara Harris (Condobolin), Baiden Forster (Forbes), Jayden Pope (Parkes), Charlie Oraha from Parkes (back), Kevin Read (Aboriginal liaison officer), Billie O'Bryan (Condobolin), Kaiden Atkinson (Condobolin), youth officer Senior Constable Daniel Greef, Sarah Williams (Forbes Shire Council youth officer) and Jake Smith (Forbes). Photo: Christine Little

Learning about your surroundings and giving back to the community - that's what Indigenous youth are focusing on in the Active Citizen Program.

On Thursday nine participants from the program spent their morning at the Rotary Peace Precinct in Parkes, on the corner of Bushman and East streets.

With the help of Parkes Shire Council staff, they planted 150 plants and explored the story behind the location and carvings through some activities.

"Today is about working with Rotary, learning about ways in which people can give back to the community," Central West Police District Youth Officer, Senior Constable Daniel Greef said on Thursday.

"And the Peace Precinct is a great practical example of this, and reconciliation.

"It's an opportunity to learn about the meaning of the area and its links with Wiradjuri culture."

It's the first time for some of the Year 10 students, who come from Parkes, Forbes and Condobolin, to learn about the area.

"They found it interesting discovering this park and the meaning behind and within it," Senior Constable Greef said.

"I love this program, it's one of the best things I get to be involved with."

PLANTING: Jake Smith (Forbes) and Kaiden Atkinson (Condobolin) planting some plants with a Parkes Shire Council worker. Photo: Submitted

PLANTING: Jake Smith (Forbes) and Kaiden Atkinson (Condobolin) planting some plants with a Parkes Shire Council worker. Photo: Submitted

Kiara Harris from Condobolin High School, who's written books in Wiradjuri language, said her and her peers were given a good insight into the location.

"We were fortunate enough to learn about Wiradjuri history in the Rotary Peace Precinct, plant trees and give back to the community," she said.

"We learnt that no matter your race, religion and skin colour, always give back to your community and learn about your culture you live in."

THANK YOU: Baiden Forster from Forbes thanked Parkes Rotary Club for the day at the Rotary Peace Precinct, presenting secretary Ken Engsmyr an appreciation certificate. Photo: Christine Little

THANK YOU: Baiden Forster from Forbes thanked Parkes Rotary Club for the day at the Rotary Peace Precinct, presenting secretary Ken Engsmyr an appreciation certificate. Photo: Christine Little

The Peace Precinct was constructed three years ago and came about when Rotary needed to relocate its Peace Community plaque.

"We had to move the plaque so we thought let's do a project that has some meaning," Parkes Rotary secretary Ken Engsmyr said.

"It's about reconciliation, new comers and the Rotary peace movement."

The site features timber sculptures with indigenous designs by three artists - Sean Cassidy, Scott "Sauce" Towney who looked after the wood carvings and Scott Turnbull who did the metal work.

The day was a collaboration between Parkes Rotary, Parkes Shire Council, Central West Police and local youth.

And in true Rotary style, it ended with a barbecue lunch.