NAIDOC Week 2018 launches Virtual River Yarns game | Video, photos, pictures

WIMMERA people have come together to recognise and celebrate Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander culture and contributions for NAIDOC Week. 

NAIDOC Week in the Wimmera has seen two community projects launched, which celebrate the Wotjobaluk culture.

A glimpse at Virtual River Yarns

An art mural painted by Wimmera artists in April was launched on Monday. The mural that celebrates Indigenous women and their contributions, now hangs in the Horsham Town Hall.

The game immersed users into the Wimmera’s cultural heritage by allowing them to experience what the region looked like before European settlement.  

WCMA Aboriginal water officer Ben Muir said the virtual experience was a first for the Wotjobaluk people. 

The authority has worked alongside the region’s traditional owners, Aboriginal groups, students and an immersive heritage specialist to create Virtual River Yarns.

Mr Muir said to launch the tool during NAIDOC Week was significant because the virtual experience could teach the broader community about Aboriginal culture. 

“We thought it would be a great idea to launch Virtual River Yarns on NAIDOC Week – this is a very special week and the idea is a first for our people,” he said. 

Mr Muir said Virtual River Yarns received great interest from indigenous and non-indigenous organisations and community members alike. He said the virtual reality experience can engage children and get them excited about the Wimmera’s cultural heritage. 

“We are hoping it will teach the broader community about what the Wimmera and the Wimmera River is about and what it use to be,” he said. “This is a new way for all people to learn about the Aboriginal culture that was around.” 

Also planned for NAIDOC Week is a film festival on Wednesday from 11am at Federation University.

There will be a community lunch on Friday from 12pm at Nexus. 

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