There's a technological revolution under way in remote areas of Queensland.
With the help of digital technology, "we are saving storied to pass on to our children and grandchildren", said Likkian Noah from Pormpuraaw on the Western Cape.
Ms Noah is one of 18 Indigenous Knowledge Centre co-ordinators meeting this week at the State Library of Queensland's Kuril Dhagun Cebtre near Kurilpa Point to share experiences and learn computer and electronic skills.
Former MasterChef contestant Tom Moseby has recently taken on the role of executive manager of indigenous research and projects at SLQ. He grew up on Thursday Island in the Torres Strait, and yesterday said these centres were "helping indigenous communties keep their culture strong".
The IKC project began in 2002, combining traditional meeting places and modern library services. The 18th centre will open in November on Hammond Island.
Most co-ordinators are femail teachers and elders who record local stories, photos and artwork to be shared with others in the community and people on the internet (at www.ikcnetwork.blogspot.com).
Annie Min is known as "Grandma Library" on Mabuiag Island in the Torres Strait. "I store stories and pictures into the computer in English, Creole and Kala Lagua Ya languages." she said.
Co-ordinators said that, as well as preserving oral history, the initiative gave indigenous communties "a sense of belonging".
Courier Mail, 23 October 2009
The Dot Com Mob is actively supporting the resourcing of technology centres in remote Indigenous communities in partnership with the State Library of Qld. These centres are called Indigenous Knowledge and Technology Centres.
The Internet can help overcome the disadvantage experienced by students living in remote locations and the latest offering from the State Library is an example of this.
The State Library of Queensland has recently purchased a state-wide licence for Yourtutor.
Any member of the public with a library card can log-in with their library bar-code to receive free online support completing homework, assignments or preparing for exams.
IKC administrators are encouraged to promote this free service to members of their communities.
Simply follow the links and choose your IKC location (e.g. Torres Strait Island Regional Council) and you will be placed in line to receive support from a live tutor - a real person!
Meet the groups the Dot Com Mob is working together with to open and operate Indigenous Knowledge Centre's in Queensland's remote Indigenous communities so that members of these communities can have access to the same services as every other Australian. The Administrators from 16 IKCs across Cape York, Torres Strait and Cherbourg attended a conference in Cairns in Sept to share ideas and learn about new activities they can run in their centres.
The Mayor of Hope Vale, Greg Mclean called for more funding so councils can continue to offer 'long-life' learning opportunites in Indigenous communities.
Watch the video to see and hear the difference these centres are making.
From the very top of Australia in the Torres Strait Island of Boigu down to Cherbourg in south-east Queensland, Indigenous communities are enjoying computer and library activities. Watch this video for a personal tour inside these centres and to meet the people supporting this initiative.
The Qld State Library is committed to supporting the personal and professional development of the people selected by local councils to undertake the role of IKC Administrator. This support will see IKC Administrators better equipped to engage and grow their respective communities through the delivery of education, social and economic services and activities. The conference was held at Cairns Colonial Club Resort from 8 - 11 September, 2008.
Also attending the conference was the Minister for Community Development from Papua, New Guinea - Dame Carol Kidu.
Dame Carol, speaks about the merits of IKCs in the video below.
State Librarian Lea Giles-Peters today announced a major new acquisition by the State Library of Queensland of a significant photographic collection charting the development of the Hope Vale community from 1958–83. Ms Giles-Peters said Lutheran Pastor Ivan Roennfeldt’s donation of his collection of 2,000 photographs and slides coincided with the 50th anniversary of Hope Vale’s Lutheran Church.
Pastor Roennfeldt, 83, who is now retired and living in Brisbane, was on the Board of the Lutheran Church which oversaw the Hope Vale Mission. He visited the Mission many times over 25 years from 1958, and photographed the community and local landmarks.
“The photographic collection donated by Pastor Roennfeldt depicts the daily activities of the mission, such as farming, constructing irrigation systems and wood turning,” Ms Giles-Peters said. “There are also a number of images acquired by Pastor Roennfeldt dating from the 1800s, which show the earlier traditional life of the community, including rare shots of fishing, camping and shelters.” Pastor Roennfeldt’s photographs will become part of the State Library’s Heritage Collections.
The State Library is investigating digitising the collection so it can be viewed by people across the state and throughout Australia online through the Picture Queensland database. Ms Giles-Peters said the State Library is committed to supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait communities and preserving their unique culture and stories.
“In partnership with the local council, the Department of Communities and private donors, the State Library opened an Indigenous Knowledge Centre in Hope Vale last month,” she said. “The Hope Vale centre provides a place for people to come together, socialise, learn and celebrate the community’s cultural heritage and is part of the network of 17 Indigenous Knowledge Centres located across the state.”