Unity Cup

On Saturday we were very privileged to be invited to attend one of the major events in the Yorta Yorta community calendar,  the Unity Cup.

The event was held at the Rumbalara Football Netball Club,  which is a key  meeting place.

Here is some information from the promotional flyer:

In its 7th year in 2013, Rumbalara Football Netball Club along with Congupna Football Netball Club continue to unite all women by honouring the significance of the many roles we play as Grandmothers, Mothers, Aunties and Sisters and our importance to creating our strong families and community.

This year the theme was ‘Women and social inclusion’.

To mark the event, we (all the women and girls) were invited to participate in the ‘Women’s Walk of Solidarity’ which was very moving. At break time in the footy, the two teams formed a guard of honour and the women and girls all congregated on one side of the field. Firstly there was a traditional smoking ceremony and then we all walked across the field. As we approached the two teams they were clapping, a slow but strong rhythmic beat. There are women of all ages and walks of life, including the Victorian Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Janette Powell and the Mayor of Greater Shepparton Jenny Houlihan. Here is a picture of us getting ready.

Women's Walk of Solidarity

Women’s Walk of Solidarity

This ceremony reminded me a little of when we were in New Zealand and went to the marae (sacred community space). When you come to a marae, as a visitor you must wait until you are called by the elders, then the men flank the women on either side as you approach the marae.

The lunch featured special guest Lois Peeler, one of the original Sapphires and community leader, who shared with us her amazing story. Lois gave her insights as the first Aboriginal model and compare on television, to her adventures with the Sapphires and her long standing work helping her people. It was wonderful to hear one of the stories behind this wonderful film.

Proud, strong family... That's Rumba!

Proud, strong family… That’s Rumba!

A bit more about the club – Rumbalara in Yorta Yorta language means ‘the end of the rainbow’, the tag line is “Proud, strong family… that’s Rumba!”, which connects strongly with the core values being: Loyalty, Respect, Passion, Determination and Integrity. There is heaps more information on the club’s website.

Rumbalara Football Netball Club also hosts every week a family meal which is a great way for people to connect and support the club. All the secondees helped out last week serving the dinner. Here is a picture of the lovely Lyn stirring the huge pot of beef and vegetable stew, which was delicious!

Lyn stirring the stew

Lyn stirring the stew

Here is the club’s theme song in English and Yorta Yorta:

We’re the best in the Goulburn Valley and we’re out to heed your call
Nyundak duta ina Kiella Banimina Nyundak wanyawala nak birra nhurrang ganyin
We’re the boys from mightly “Rumba” and we’re always on the ball
Nyundak dunguda yiryirr nin dungudja “Rumba” nyundak yamin nonu
Our elders give us inspiration and we haven’t any fear
Yenbena Nyuwandan dipa (tippa) nyuwanda Yorta djiyaman
We are the boys from “Rumbalara” and we’re gonna be premiers this year
Nyundak dunguda uiryirr nin dungudja “Rumbalara” nyundak duta imilang
We’re the best in the Goulburn Valley and we’re out to heed your call
Nyundak duta ina Kiella Banimina Nyundak wanyawala nak birra nhurrang ganyin
We’re the boys from mightly “Rumba” and we’re always on the ball
Nyundak dunguda yiryirr nin dungudja “Rumba” nyundak yamin nonu
We are the boys from Rumbalara and we’re gonna be premiers this year
Nyundak dunguda uiryirr nin dungudja “Rumbalara” nyundak duta imilang
Go Rumba.
Ya Rumba.

I am really looking forward to participating in other activities at Rumba over the coming weeks.

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