The Kapululangu Women’s Culture Camps | TripaSista

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Our Elders Are Kapululangu. 

Kapululangu is Australia’s only Aboriginal women’s Law (ceremonial) and Culture (custom) organisation. The initiative of the Women Elders of Balgo, Mulan and Billiluna communities in south-east Kimberley. Each year during May and June Kapululangu runs a Women’s Law Camp and a Dreaming Track Trek. Participation is open to Aboriginal and Settler women. Book your place quickly as spaces are limited. Visit our website or facebook page to book!

Seven Sisters Dreaming Track Trip May 30 – Jun 6, 2018
Women’s Culture Learning Camp 2 Jun 20 – Jun 27, 2018
Aboriginal Women’s Law camp Kururrungku (Billiluna) July 18 – July 25, 2018

The Kapululangu Women’s Law and Culture Centre was established by Balgo Women Elders to assist them in fulfilling their obligations as the Senior Law Women (ceremonial bosses), healers, providers and protectors for their families and peoples.

Kapululangu’s Elders were born in the desert, and grew up and were trained in the Old Ways before the arrival of Kartiya/non-Indigenous people in their ancestral countries.  This makes them custodians of an immense wealth of stories, skills and cultural knowledge. They want to share this wealth.

Kapululangu is a local Indigenous response to locally-identified problems using locally-initiated, culturally-based strategies. It was established by the Balgo Women Elders because they wanted to enjoy and to teach the cultural knowledge that was passed to them by their Old People and Ancestors.

The Elders believe that connectedness with Tjukurrpa (the Universal Life Force/Dreaming) through Ceremony, Country and Cultural Awakening is an imperative in any attempt to protect their families from the myriad social problems impacting their peoples, particularly their young ones.

Kapululangu’s vision is of a vibrant and cohesive community which honours its elders, protects its women and children, and empowers all its residents to live fulfilling and productive lives immersed in respect for self, kin, land and Tjukurrpa/Dreaming.

 

 

Q What is Balgo?   

Balgo is one of Australia's most remote Aboriginal communities. It is the gateway to the south-east Kimberley region of Australia which was first entered by Kartiya/Settler society as recently as 70 years ago. We often call Balgo "Wirrimanu". Balgo is its Whitefellla name. "Wirrimanu' takes its name from a nearby Dreaming Site on the trail of Luurnpa the Kingfisher Ancestor. Balgo community is on Djaru Country, but is the home of seven Language Groups (“tribes”/”nations”), predominantly Kukatja. It is neighboured by two smaller Aboriginal communities: Billiluna which is halfway between Halls Creek and Balgo, and Mulan which is to the west of Balgo (and thus even more remote!). Balgo is a Closed Aboriginal Community so you need to have a permit before visiting. Once your fees are paid in full, Kapululangu will organise your permit on your behalf. 
 

Q Where is Balgo? 

Balgo is located in the south-east Kimberley in Western Australia, on the Tanami Track approximately 300km south of Halls Creek (a small predominantly Aboriginal town), which itself is approximately 300km south of Kununurra (the largest regional town). The three communities/towns run vertically down the Western Australia-Northern Territory border: Kununurra in the north, Halls Creek and then Balgo. Draw a straight line between Alice Springs in the Northern Territory and Broome in Western Australia, and Balgo is near the midway point. Or simply find the half-way point on the Western Australia/Northern Territory border and we're just to the west. Balgo is the southern most community on the north-eastern edge of Western Australia’s massive wilderness of the Great Sandy Desert.

Q Where are the Camps held? 

While all camps start in Balgo they are all based at different sites. The Women's Law Camp is held on Kapululangu's Women's Law (Ceremonial) Ground in the bush outside of Balgo. The Women's Culture Learning Camp is mainly based at the Women's Law House (with toilets and showers) in (or rather on the outskirts of) Balgo, and also includes a night at a remote camping location away from the community. The Dreaming Track Trek takes us deep into the Great Sandy Desert to sacred sites in the Stansmore Ranges where we camp near a beautiful lake.  
If I'm coming on the Women's Law Camp and/or the Women's Culture Learning Camp, how do I get to Balgo? 
 
For those of you attending the Women’s Law Camp or the Women’s Culture Learning Camp …in a nutshell, you need to get yourself to Halls Creek WA to arrive there on the Tuesday night before your camp. We will come to Halls Creek and pick you up in our community bus on the Wednesday morning, and bring you back to Balgo (a 300km approximately 4 hour drive). When it comes time for you to leave Balgo you will be driven back to Halls Creek in our bus on the Wednesday morning that your camp finishes. We will attempt to get you to Halls Creek by midday on Wednesday but, given we are talking desert here, it’s best for you to allow time for a flat tyre or mechanical mishap before your planned departure from Halls Creek.
 
To get to Halls Creek you need to catch the GreyHound Coach from either Kununurra or Broome. Halls Creek is on the Great Northern Highway which runs between these two regional towns. If you choose to stay at the Kimberley Hotel in Halls Creek you can arrange with them to pick you up from and/or drop you off for the GreyHound Coach.

With GreyHound Coach (as of 21 March) is costs $100 and takes 4 hours to travel from Kununrra to Halls Creek. In comparison, coming from Broome its costs $115 and takes 9 hours to Halls Creek. As for timetables, the coaches leave Kununurra daily at 3.20am and arrive in Halls Creek at 7.15am - on the return trip it leaves Halls Creek at 4.05pm and arrives in Kununurra at 7.55pm. In comparison, the coach leaves Broome at 6am and arrives in Halls Creek at 3pm - and on the return trip it leaves Halls Creek at 8.25am and arrives in Broome at 5.30pm. Which route do you prefer? 

Q How do I get to Kununurra or Broome? 

Both Qantas and Virgin fly to Kununurra and Broome. So your job for this leg of the journey is to get yourself from where you are currently located to Kununurra or Broome. Keeping in mind that the GreyHound Coach travels between Kununurra and Broome and you need to get yourself on one of their coaches heading for Halls Creek.

Q Where can I hire a 4WD Vehicle from? 

You can hire a vehicle from either Broome, Kununurra or Darwin. So you need to arrange your flights to wherever you choose to pick your vehicle up from. You could even hire a 4WD in Alice Springs but we suggest against taking on the 14 hour journey along the Tanami Track without having already had significant experience driving on remote dirt roads. (One very important point about hiring a car is… please make sure that it is 4WD and, if possible, diesel fuelled … as we prefer not to have petrol vehicles arriving in our remote community because of the associated health risks.

Q What's the Best Way to Drive to Balgo? 

We strongly suggest that all participants driving to the camp approach Balgo from Halls Creek which is to the north of Balgo, at the northern end of the famous Tanami Track. That will ensure that you have as little time as possible driving on a dirt track. The distance from Halls Creek to Balgo is 300km and it’s a 4 hour trip. The distance from Alice Springs to Balgo is approximately 850km and takes approximately 14 hours. There is no mobile phone contact while on the Tanami Track. And, unless you are carrying a satellite phone with you, if you break down and don’t have the capacity to assist yourself you will need to wait until someone else comes along before getting help. Fortunately we’ll be asking all Campers to meet up in Halls Creek on the Tuesday night before your Camp so that you can leave Halls Creek all together in a convoy. That way you will be able to look after each other. Our Handbook which will be sent to all successful applicants will provide detailed information about how to drive safely on remote area dirt tracks in desert regions.

1 Review for The Kapululangu Women’s Culture Camps

bec_3964

1 Reviews

A profound experience!

5/ 5

Going on one of these camps is not about comfort, afternoon drinks by the pool, being waited on. If you want that, go to a Hotel. If you are adventurous, adaptable, energetic and most important of all, willing to learn about yourself and the incredible Law and Culture of the First Nations People, then this is for you. Most of all, be prepared to just listen. And marvel in being covered from head to toe in beautiful red dirt, by the end of the camp! It will change you forever.

F935FE3C CCD7 4821 AB3C 188EE57FF67B 184x135 - A profound experience!
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