Healing program making a difference

Kalypi Paaka Mirika program facilitator Alinta Edge.Picture: Andrew Lodiong

A healing program designed to support local Indigenous community members is making a life-changing impact.

The Kalypi Paaka Mirika (meaning clear river ahead) program run by Maari Ma Health provides grief and trauma counselling while reminding Aboriginal people of their strengths.

Program facilitator, Alinta Edge, said participants often leave with a positive mindset.

“I think we’ve given people the confidence to find jobs and to seek help,” she said.

“By the end of the program, everyone is friends if they didn’t already know each other.”

Kalypi Paaka Mirika was developed and has run locally over the past decade.

Staff have door knocked and advertised the service through the radio and TV platforms to spread awareness.

The program usually takes place over five days. It is run in groups (sorted by gender) of up to about seven members.

Ms Edge said the group atmosphere helps participants open up and share.

“Yes, because everyone bounces off each other,” she said.

“If there’s a quieter person in the group and there’s other people that talk, they usually encourage that person to speak up.”

The proud Dieri and Wilyakali woman hopes the current NAIDOC Week will continue to bring community members together.

“NAIDOC to me means community coming together and family being able to enjoy their time together and celebrate culture,” Ms Edge said.

“Celebrate the generations before us who have fought and paved the way for us to be who we are today.

“It also celebrates our history and achievements of our people.”

Maari Ma Health will host a brunch today to acknowledge the cultural week.

Ms Edge encourages anyone who would like to participate in the Kalypi Paaka Mirika program to contact the health service.

Maari Ma Health is located at 439-443 Argent Street, Broken Hill. For more information, call (08) 8082 9888.

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