20 May 2016
Bringing together people from Central Australia’s most remote communities, the Waltja Aged and Disability Festival will be celebrated in a unique bushland camp east of Alice Springs, from 5-9 September. The participants will be older Aboriginal people and people with disability from across central Australia who will engage in cultural and fun activities, pampering, country visits and connecting with service providers.
Waltja Tjutangku Palyapayi, incorporated in 1997, is an Aboriginal organisation governed by senior Aboriginal women from remote communities across central Australia who will lead the Festival, supported by Waltja staff and volunteers.
The Festival provides an opportunity for working directly with Aboriginal families, people with disability and older people and their carers in a fun, festive atmosphere, providing an opportunity for respite as well as being a source of learning and knowledge sharing. The festival also aims to create inspiring, good-practice resources for Aboriginal communities and organisations.
A major benefit for participants at the Festival is the opportunity to re-unite with family who may live in other remote communities.
“We are really proud of our organisation and we support old people and people with disabilities in communities,” Waltja Executive Director April Martin said
The 2016 Festival is a celebration of Aboriginal cultural heritage and through giving people access to the supports they need to travel and participate in the event, it provides a vital opportunity to spend time together to restore and nurture family and community relationships.
To deliver the Aged and Disability Festival in 2016, Waltja will partner with Life Without Barriers (LWB), a national organisation providing services and programs to support a range of people, and with a deep commitment to reconciliation.
Waltja and LWB will be seeking financial and in-kind support from the broader business community to help provide essential funding for the Festival and to bring together 200 people for the celebration and cultural exchange. Support requested from sponsors will help cover the cost of travel, provision of facilities and accommodation.
Chief Executive of LWB Claire Robbs, said the organisation is grateful for the opportunity to partner with Waltja and to work together to deliver the Festival.
“Most importantly for us, we are honoured to be invited to attend and host people at the event who we know and support through our Disability Services, Out of Home Care and programs supporting older people. “ Ms Robbs said.
“We are also calling on the wider community and corporate supporters to make a donation or consider becoming a sponsor of the event,” she said.
“It is the only event of its kind providing cross-generational cultural connection for Aboriginal people, and active inclusion of older people and people with disability who are often excluded from cultural life due to their limited mobility,” said Kate Lawrence, Waltja Management Support Worker
Media Contact: For further information or to arrange interviews, please contact Maree Brindley, External Relations Life Without Barriers [email protected] 0458 592 828.
About Waltja Tjutangku Palyapayi, incorporated
Waltja’s work has focused on the establishment of culturally appropriate services in remote communities, including early childhood services and youth programs, aged care and disability services, emergency relief and financial literacy.
Waltja has continually supported the self-determination of Aboriginal people and has auspiced other Aboriginal organisations and social enterprises.
In 2014 Waltja was awarded the Reconciliation Australia Indigenous Governance Award, described as “a very well-run organisation concentrating on delivering services to families and communities … one of the best organisations I have encountered, the best in Australia.”
Please visit https://www.waltja.org.au/ to see the great work Waltja Tjutangku Palyapayi delivers in partnership with local communities.
About Life Without Barriers
Now in its 20th year, Life Without Barriers has supported thousands of people to live the best life possible and we are proud to champion opportunity for all.
We are a For Purpose organisation working in more than 305 communities to support more than 11,500 people to live their best life possible.
We work with individuals, their carers and others in the community and we build relationships with a broad range of people from diverse communities and backgrounds. We support people to identify their personal goals and objectives and assist them to participate fully in their communities. Today, we are one of the largest providers of social services in Australia. This includes working in partnership with the community, elders, government and private sector to improve the lives of the people we support.
We believe in the rights of people and the importance of relationships. These foundations shape our unique approach to care and underpin our values.