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Mother tongue will guide you home by song 

- Lorna Munro, Yala Gari, commisioned poet


"The opportunity to be part of Yala Gari, working with Indigenous poets and artists to build language skills, and encourage pride in Indigenous culture, is of enormous benefit to our students and wider school community.”

~ Diane Fetherston, Principal, Alexandria Park Community School


The Project

Inspired by poets Lorna Munro and Eric Avery, Yala Gari (Speak the Truth) is a language program that empowers students from Redfern and Sydney City communities to create, perform and publish poetry that celebrates first nation cultures and languages (including Wiradjuri, Gamilaroi, Ngiyampaa, Yuin, and Sydney Languages).

Through a series of poet-in-residence programs in schools, Yala Gari strengthens awareness of, and respect for, Indigenous languages and cultural connections by engaging poets, artists, students, their families, and communities around Redfern, Waterloo and Alexandria.


Yala Gari 2017

After a successful pilot, Yala Gari will continue in 2017, featuring in Alexandria Park Community School and Alexandria Park Secondary School. The program will be run by Alexandria Park alumnus, Lorna Munro.

As part of Red Room Poetry's Poetic Moments, poems from Lorna and the students will be published on City of Sydney street banners for two weeks during NAIDOC Week (2-9 July). There will be 17 banners along Cleveland and Regent Sts, Redfern from 26 June to 9 July, for the 2017 theme 'Our Languages Matter'.

The banners were designed by Yuwaalaraay visual artist Lucy Simpson (sells works under the label Gaawaa Miyay) supported by the 2016 Arts NSW (now Create NSW) Indigenous Design Mentorship Scheme.

Read more about the banners »


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