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Young Aboriginal Mother’s and Children Mural

Our awesome project is to have 8 small murals designed and painted at the Gunawirra house by our Young Aboriginal Mothers Program (YAMP) groups. Many Aboriginal women come from families that have struggled with generations of poverty, substance abuse, mental illness, domestic violence and family dislocation. They have few resources to call on in helping them with the challenging and difficult work of raising children. This early intervention service for Aboriginal women from pregnancy through to their child starting school. It was formed in response to the need for mothers and their babies to be supported in building stronger, safer and healthier relationships. We have 3 weekly groups.

YAMP engages with, supports and holds the mothers through the 1st 5 years of their child’s life. We provide a therapeutic space where Aboriginal women, may of whom are teenagers and some of whom are still in school uniform will have the opportunity to talk about and understand what has happened in their lives, to be understood and to begin to develop pride and confidence in themselves as women and as mothers. By focusing on and actively supporting the vital healthy links between mother and child, we aim to reduce the impact of intergenerational trauma in Aboriginal families.

The main purpose for the painted murals is for these Aboriginal women and their children to bond together to create an artwork that symbolises their love and connection to each other. The murals would also symbolise their identity as Aboriginal women and helps connect their children to their culture. Connecting to culture is so important and for the children to be creating and learning who they are is also very important in understanding their Aboriginality. Aboriginal artist Graham has been teaching the mothers and their children about Aboriginal symbols and art techniques. This allows them to tell their own stories and discover more about their own culture.

Funded by Sydney (November 2015)