The Bawurra Foundation is an organisation built around the cultural preservation of Indigenous heritage. For Indigenous people, the need to belong and connect with Country is a vital part of their psyche. From Nation to Nation, cultural practice, language and specific usage of the land are part of their Sacred Knowledge. Elders have passed down this knowledge orally to the next generation for centuries.
Today the existence of this unique cultural knowledge is under threat. As our world is rapidly becoming interconnected and globalised, the link to local land and customs seems increasingly disconnected from the fast-paced nature of society. Yet through a simple technology called the Kindle, Indigenous culture is finding ways to adapt and preserve this knowledge for the future. The Bawurra Foundation has been at the forefront of this, with their aim to close the illiteracy gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
The usage of the Kindle has assisted Bawurra greatly in the preservation of Indigenous heritage, enabling the enrichment of Indigenous children across NSW. The Kindles curated by Bawurra are a document of the nations that we have helped, and are an educational tool for Indigenous students in remote communities to improve educational skills and strengthen their connection to country.
Access to educational devices is a constant issue for many of the remote Indigenous communities we target. The Kindle however, eliminates that considerably. Providing community-written books, short stories and illustrations in a digital format without the need for Internet access is one of the many positives of the Kindle. It also provides a chance for the community to be brought together without the need of Internet.
Our young generation is quite inquisitive. Providing a tool that can ensure the passing on of knowledge is our goal. If we can get at least one Indigenous person to be proud of their tradition and heritage, and use it as an instrument to instill positive change in our country, then we have achieved our goal as an organisation.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are a proud people, with the oldest living culture in the world. Currently this culture lives on in the form of print, digital records, music and photography, serving as a vital tool for cultural preservation. 2017 is a big year for the Bawurra Foundation, as we aim to expand our reach into local communities. It is great to see that the Kindle is proving to be such a success: the modern bridge that provides a means for the Indigenous culture to survive.