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Image: women working on items during the recent Kintore Kunkas trip

Image: women working on items during the recent Kintore Kunkas trip

From the National Director

In the last few weeks I have seen the films The Song Keepers and Gurrumul and I heard Archie Roach and Tiddas sing at 'Dancing with my Spirit' in Melbourne's Hamer Hall. A remarkable cultural feast. But the films and performance have been so much more than a feast. They are a testimony to the cultural treasures of Aboriginal people, the wonderful collaborations that are possible between Aboriginal people and Others, and to the humane capacity of Aboriginal people creating transformative ways forward for all Australians. In the words of Tracker Tilmouth, 'the Vision Splendid!' (Alexis Wright, 2018, Tracker).

read full report...

Pamela Nathan
Director, CASSE Aboriginal Australian Relations Program


Chris Croker joins CASSE leadership team

Chris Croker

We are proud to announce that Chris Croker, a member of the Luritja Aboriginal Nation of central Australia, has joined the CASSE Committee of Management. Chris is the Managing Director of Impact Investment Partners and has 10 years experience in project management for the Resource Industry and 10 years experience in Indigenous and general business consulting.

Chris said, “I’m proud to join CASSE as they are doing fantastic work in assisting both young and older Aboriginal people in building better and safer lives for themselves and their families”.


Men’s Shed Research Launch

Image: (left to right) Anne Kantor AO, Bronwyn Silver, Ken Lechleitner Pangarte, Pamela Nathan, Gareth Andrews, Donna Ah Chee, Rob Springall, John Boffa, Clive Rosewarne

Without doubt, one of the highlights so far this year has been the launch of The Kurunna Mwarre Ingkintja – Good Spirit Men’s Place - research report supported by CASSE in partnership with the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress. This project commenced in 2015 with the aim of developing a unique Aboriginal Men’s Shed Model, along cultural lines, to empower men to find their voices and live authentically. For two years prior, many consultations were held with Aboriginal men and communities to determine the direction and need for pending research.

The research identified establishing a male leadership group, having a place for males and addressing violence as key priorities. The first recommendation has already been implemented with the establishment of Blokes On Track Aboriginal Corporation (BOTAC). We are proud to take this opportunity to introduce you to the founding members of BOTAC and look forward to sharing BOTAC’s progress and development with you in the future:

  • Glen Sharpe - Chairperson
  • Troy Appo - Deputy Chair
  • Kevin Corbey - Treasurer
  • Ian McAdam - Director
  • Darren Talbot - General Director (Public Officer)
  • Mick Campbell - General Director
  • Ken Lechleitner - General Director

Media stories:

DOWNLOAD: Kurruna Mwarre Ingkintja–Good Spirit Men’s Place Research Project Report

DOWNLOAD: Kurruna Mwarre Ingkintja–Good Spirit Men’s Place Research Project Report


DOWNLOAD: Kurruna Mwarre Ingkintja Transcript – Interviews ‘Talking Powerfully from the Heart’

DOWNLOAD: Kurruna Mwarre Ingkintja Transcript – Interviews ‘Talking Powerfully from the Heart’

Kintore Kunkas Trip

The Men’s Tjilirra Movement (MTM) is based in communities in the central and western desert region. Program Manager Jamie Millier Tjupurrula works with the communities to strengthen the bonds and cultural connection between elders and youth through sharing knowledge of traditional tools (tjilirra), country, culture and lore.

Jamie has maintained weekly journal recordings of his work with the MTM, and the MTM’s progress, since its inception. An excerpt from a recent trip to Kintore is included in a recent blog - read here.


Making hair string

CASSE partnership with Penthos

CASSE is very pleased to announce a new partnership with Penthos, a non-profit organisation providing psychoanalytically oriented specialist preventive mental health interventions for families and couples suffering loss and prolonged grief. Penthos provides specialist preventive mental health intervention to disadvantaged couples and families. Penthos shares CASSE's purpose and interest in applying psychoanalytic psychotherapy techniques and processes in their work. 

Timothy Keogh, President of Penthos and a psychoanalyst, clinical and forensic psychologist and couples psychotherapist with over 30 of years clinical experience, has had a long involvement with CASSE as a member of the CASSE Advisory Committee.


Tools for life

Bunnings logo

Thanks to Bunnings Warehouse, Alice Springs for the generous donation of axes for the Men's Tjilirra Movement (MTM). The men use the axes for chopping the wood to be turned into tjilirra (traditional tools). For more information about the MTM click here.


CASSE office in Alice Springs

With CASSE's work in central Australia continuing to grow, we have now committed to office space in the Centrecorp/Central Land Council facilities in Alice Springs and look forward to inviting potential partners and collaborators to meet with us in this space. 


Southern Summer Songlines Suite: Country needs Composers

Loyola Woods-Cameron was a key organiser of the 2017 RANZCP Faculty of Psychotherapy Conference 2017, which was held at Uluru and featured Pamela Nathan, Director of CASSE’ Aboriginal Australian Relations Program, as a keynote speaker and workshops with CASSE (the Men’s Tjilrra Movement and Ken Lechleitner Pangarte). Loyola wrote to Pamela Nathan of the significance of the conference to her and her practice, and also of it affirming her need to connect with her own background, which includes Stolen Generation.

As a composer, Loyola embarked upon this journey through music, taking traditional European Christmas carols, in particular the hauntingly beautiful ‘Coventry Carol’, and exploring these through an Australian and Indigenous lens. The result is a suite of 5 main pieces. Loyola writes: “The narrative is built around a translation of the original Northern Hemisphere’s Carol story of murdered children, to the Australian context of stolen children and the sad and traumatic story of colonization and the subsequent need for healing, reconciliation and transformation”. We are honoured that Loyola invited CASSE to share her moving work - 'Southern Summer Songlines Suite: Country needs Composers' - with our community. Listen here.


Congratulations to Alexis Wright

In our last newsletter we reviewed the outstanding book Tracker by Alexis Wright. Since then, Alexis has been awarded the 2018 Stella Prize for this book. Alexis is a brilliant writer and this recognition is so well deserved. We were honoured to have  permission from Alexis to share another of her award winning pieces of writing - 'What happens when you tell somebody else's story' - at CASSE's  2017 symposium 'The Day After Tomorrow - Breakthrough Recognition'.  We recorded and shared the video of Alexis reading excerpts from this important essay at the event. Click here to watch video.


Our politics is a dreadful black comedy

In his recent address to the National Press Club, Richard Flanagan, Man Booker prize winner for The Narrow Road to the Deep North, stated: "Freedom exists in the shadow of memory. For Australia to find out what freedom means it has to face up to the truth of its past". Click here to read this powerful speech.


How can you support our work?

To make a donation, please contact us: phone 0450 540 366 or email enquiries@cassse.org.au .

CASSE Australia Inc (ABN: 17811 536 315) is registered in Australia as a Deductible Gift Recipient. All donations over $2 made to CASSE Australia are tax deductible and go directly towards supporting our programs.