Wellington’s Indigenous community left a film crew inspired as they took part in a workshop aimed at creating conversation about mental health for Indigenous people.
Charity orginsation, Desert Pea Media (DPM), spent two weeks in Wellington recently working on a media project with around 20 local students, councillors, community members and organisations.
‘Break it Down’ – a story-telling project funded by NSW Primary Health Network – involves six communities around Western NSW. Participants assist crew in writing and recording a song, before shooting a music video and creating a series of short films with a focus on community members.
The material will be compiled into a mental health awareness campaign using a ‘90s hip hop approach. It will be worked into the curriculum, across social media and other broadcast opportunities.
Creative director, Toby Finlayson, said the content produced in Wellington was nothing short of amazing.
“Both the high schools have been involved which isn’t a common thing, but a really fantastic example of the community coming together to do something positive,” he said.
Toby said the stories shared by William Hill, Kristy White and Mary Henderson were particularly inspiring.
“One of the films we created was with William Hill who tells his story about his reconnection with culture and country, and how that helped him grow as a person,” he said.
“Mary grew up in Wellington on Nanima Reserve and shared her story of what life was like during the mission days, how things are different and the shameful treatment of Indigenous people in NSW, and especially Wellington in the past.
“It is very important for young people to understand the context of their community and history of their older community members still here in Wellington.”
Toby said participants were very responsive to discussing mental health in what was a challenging but creative process.
“It’s not easy talking about this stuff, and not a lot of people want to talk about it, so young people who live and breath the trauma and grief associated with life in Indigenous communities I think were really brave and inspirational to see them taking leadership and responsibility for change,” he said. “We were really inspired by the Wellington Indigenous community.”