Purro Birik - 43

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Purro Birik - (Healthy Spirit)




This concept has been central in the entire consultation process with support from all sectors of the community at Wathaurong. This service will ultimately be the most appropriate and effective way to approach the resolution of the community's, social, relational, emotional and cultural needs.

It will provide the forum and environment for the Wathaurong Koori Community to explore their cultural wealth, to develop positive models of community interaction, and to approach the larger social justice issues that challenge all of the indigenous people of Australia. At the same time it will provide for the Wathaurong Koori Community, a place of solace, a place of retreat, and most importantly a place to heal and recover in an environment that is owned an run by the community in the most culturally appropriate manner possible.

This concept has been described to the Moroponuk Officer by many members of the community, the Men's group and members of the youth of the community in particular (further detail is included below). On each occasion there have been several core elements of this concept, they are;

1. that the land selected for this purpose needs to out of the city and located in as natural setting as possible;
2. that there needs to be sufficient land to allow for the range of cultural and spiritual activities the community has in mind, as well as allowing sufficient space for all sectors of the community to pursue their specific "Business" in a confidential manner;
3. that the land and services developed are to remain in the ownership and control of the Wathaurong
community, that the manner in which the service is managed remains under community control; and
4. that all members of the Wathaurong community have the opportunity to participate in the development of
the service and/or use of the services provided.

Many of the Wathaurong community believe that without the development of the "Koori Place of Cultural and Spiritual Healing", that the entrenched social, communal, and relational issues that create the need for Mental Health Services and SESW services will remain.


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