Aboriginal Healing, Historical Trauma
"How many times have you heard, 'What is WRONG with that person?' There is nothing wrong with that person, things are HAPPENING or have HAPPENED to that person." Dr Carlie Atkinson
"Dust Echoes is one way that we are bringing everyone back to the same campfire - black and white. We are telling our stories to you in a way you can understand, to help you see, hear and know. And we are telling these stories to ourselves, so that we will always remember, with pride, who we are. " Tom Lewis, actor, musician, Indigenous consultant
What is Sharing Culture?
Sharing Culture is a unique human rights initiative to help Indigenous peoples heal from historical trauma and its consequences (e.g. mental health problems, addiction, suicide), as well as the impact of other adversities, e.g. social and economic disadvantage, experiences of paternalism and racism, and ongoing grief.
Sharing Culture is being developed by David Clark, an Emeritus Professor of Psychology, in close collaboration with filmmaker Michael Liu. They are supported by an international network of 40 Advisors/Healers, the vast majority of whom are world-leading experts in their respective fields.
Sharing Culture is based on the core values of authenticity, connection, courage, creativity, empathy and forgiveness. We adopt a strengths-based, solution-focused approach that celebrates success and cultivates positivity, acceptance and cultural pride. In addition, we use principles known to facilitate healing.
Sharing Culture is building educational and storytelling resources that (1) empower Indigenous people to heal, (2) help create environments in which healing can flourish, and (3) reduce barriers to healing (e.g. racism, paternalism) in wider society.
This website uses Indigenous voices to help educate society about trauma and its impact, as well as Indigenous healing and culture. You can read or watch Healing Stories. David blogs on the website.
The Foundation of Our Approach
Sharing Culture recognises that healing from trauma (and its consequences) requires empowerment and connection, and a culturally safe environment. Indigenous people must connect to their culture, land, spirituality, family, community and history to facilitate healing.
Self-determinism is the central foundation of healing. Indigenous communities, families and individuals must own and control their healing process. An holistic approach to health and wellbeing is key, one which incorporates the physical, spiritual, mental, emotional, social and environmental.
Personal and Community Healing Stories empower people by providing hope, understanding and a sense of belonging. Stories of healing initiatives help communities learn from each other, whilst Cultural Stories engender pride and facilitate cultural connectedness.
Indigenous and non-Indigenous people must come together to facilitate the healing of Indigenous people. Indigenous knowledge and understanding is key to helping create a society where people have an improved wellness, are more environmentally aware, and are more respectful, caring and empathic towards their fellow man, no matter what his or her culture.
Why not take a Website Tour? Please check About Us and our Testimonials. And our Facebook page for links to other important information. Finally, please read the beautiful, inspiring letter that David received from Rembarrgna traditional healer Miliwanga Wurrben.
Noelene White: Reflections on the Aboriginal Child Artists of Carrolup
Noelene White is daughter of Noel White, the teacher who inspired Aboriginal children of the Carrolup Native Settlement in South West Australia to create beautiful artworks in the late 1940s. These artworks inspired a new art movement that still thrives today. The child artists of Carrolup include Revel Cooper, Reynold Hart and Parnell Dempster.
Recent Blog Postings
Child Artists of Carrolup
In May 1946, teachers Noel and Lily White arrived at Carrolup and introduced an arts program to lift the spirits of the children. Noel White took the children out on bush walks and asked them to draw what they saw. Children aged between nine and thirteen were later drawing sophisticated and proportionally accurate scenes, with striking use of colour, with no formal training.
'Indigenous Australians know we're the oldest living culture - it's in our Dreamtime' by Larissa Behrendt
So oral history and observation can reinforce what the science says. Or science can confirm what we’ve been saying all along. For many older Indigenous people, the cultural stories will seem the more trustworthy. There are historic reasons why Indigenous people remain suspicious of science practiced by Europeans, who have not yet countered the legacy of their obsessions with head measuring and blood quantum.
'Indigenous Australians most ancient civilisation on Earth, DNA study confirms' by Hannah Devlin
“This story has been missing for a long time in science. Now we know their relatives are the guys who were the first real human explorers. Our ancestors were sitting being kind of scared of the world while they set out on this exceptional journey across Asia and across the sea.”
'Introducing 'Noongarpedia' - Australia's first Indigenous Wikipedia' by Monica Tan
The Noongarpedia is essentially an exploration of what life Noongar knowledge and language can take online. For Buchanan, language is “a living, adaptable and changing thing that exists in its uses, not as a heritage language for preservation. We want to face the future.”
Jan James: My Path to Connecting Aboriginal People
A key part of our 'Revel' project is to connect Revel Cooper's family - many have been fragmented by Australia's past assimilationist policies - and help them celebrate his life and artworks. For these purposes, we have linked up with Jan James, a quite remarkable lady who has been connecting Aboriginal people for nigh on forty years.
Please check out Protect Arnhem Land
Development of Historical Trauma and its Impact
“The bureaucratic interventions of the state - the processes of law, social welfare, and health care - have not addressed the core issue of human traumatisation. These issues, in many cases, compounded the trauma by creating and increasing dependency on the state, which, while intensifying the feelings of victimisation, also enforces the beliefs of being powerless to change destructive circumstances.” Judy Atkinson
Recovery Stories: 'sister' website
‘6 Secrets to Moving On From Serious Struggles’ by Beth Burgess
People who knew me ten years ago saw a scared shell of a girl, terrified of her own shadow and on a mission to self-destruct. They wouldn’t expect me to have turned my life around completely. They certainly wouldn’t expect me to be sharing my story and helping others to let go of their struggles, too.