Barkly Regional Council, NT, for Barkly Desert Cultures—Transcript

[Music plays and text appears on screen: Barkly Desert Cultures, Barkly Regional Council, NT. Arts Animates—excellence in community engagement and participation CATEGORY WINNER. Australian Coat of Arms appears with text: Australian Government. Logo and text appears on the bottom right of screen: National Awards 2015 for Local Government]

[Image changes to show Sean Spencer and text appears: Sean Spencer, Barkly Desert Cultures, Barkly Regional Council, NT]

Sean Spencer: We are 800 kilometers south of Katherine, 600 k's north of Alice Springs, and 600 k's west of Mount Isa, so we are very, very isolated.

[Image changes to show various photos of Aboriginal men in traditional dress. Logo for National Awards for Local Government appears in the bottom right hand corner with text: 2015 Category Winner]

And I work with some of the most isolated Aboriginal communities in the world. The program that brought me here is targeted at 15 to 30 year olds, because the communities had given us feedback that there was a gap with that age group and that they wanted more activities specifically for them.

[Image changes to show a group of people sitting around in a room]

[Image changes to show a photo of an Aboriginal man with three young children]

So it was a youth multimedia program.

[Image changes to show a photo of Aboriginal people dancing]

We did this transference of knowledge program, cultural connectedness, where we take the Elders and the young people together out to country and discuss the issues.

[Image changes to show a photo of Aboriginal Elders and young people together]

[Image changes back to Sean Spencer]

Sport is very huge, but it's just kind of like keeping people busy and just it doesn't really get to the heart of the issue.

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of Aboriginal musicians]

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of Aboriginal people being filmed]

We use music and film to actively discuss why these things are happening, and trying to you know ideologically work out a solution.

[Image changes to show a photo of Aboriginal men being filmed]

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of Aboriginal men with the film crew]

We kind of take whatever came out of that session back into the studio and then brainstorm some more on a whiteboard with the young men, and then turn that into songs and film clips.

[Image changes to show various photos of young Aboriginal men working in the studio]

And then we get it out there as much as we can through media outlets and through YouTube.

[Image changes to show a photo of a young Aboriginal person smiling at the camera]

[Image changes to show a photo of a person working in the studio]

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of Aboriginal musicians singing on stage]

We've had Elders come up to us saying, “I can see a difference in my young son, he's not drinking as much, he's doing music instead.”

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of young Aboriginal men]

And we hear this time and time and time again.

[Image changes back to Sean Spencer]

The thing that is just absolutely getting out of control like wildfire at the moment is really cheap smart phones, so you can get QA, which is really a Chinese version of an iPhone for a hundred dollars from Food Barn in Tennant Creek.

[Image changes to show various photos of young Aboriginal men working in the studio]

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of young Aboriginal men standing on the roof of wrecked vehicles]

So everyone's got a smart phone, and so they just have all the songs on there. Last year they won a NIMA award, which is a National Indigenous Media Award for one of their songs.

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of young Aboriginal men]

And they travelled up to Darwin to collect their prize.

[Image changes back to Sean Spencer]

And when they travelled up there they saw the ocean for the first time, so that's how isolated these communities these are.

[Image changes to show a photo of a group of Aboriginal people being filmed around a campfire]

It's a combination between English and language, and so that's led a lot by the Elders.

[Image changes to show a photo of young Aboriginal children]

All my workmates are really proud and the Council's really proud that, you know, this program has achieved that.

[Image changes to show a photo of Sean Spencer and another man with a group of young Aboriginal men]

[Image changes back to Sean Spencer]

And hopefully it brings some more attention to government to continue our programs through funding avenues.

[Text appears on screen: Barkly Desert Cultures, Barkly Regional Council, NT. Arts Animates—excellence in community engagement and participation CATEGORY WINNER. Australian Coat of Arms appears with text: Australian Government. Logo and text appears on the bottom right of screen: National Awards 2015 for Local Government]

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Last Updated: 18 June, 2015