Indigenous review

I first met June at an Indigenous writer’s retreat run by Jennifer M. at Fitzroy Falls NSW, in September 2001. My role in the retreat was to train participants in the field of legal, ethical and cultural protocols in conducting interviews within the Indigenous community.

I observed June interviewing my sister for the Published Anthology Talking Ink from Ochre. She was highly adept at all the skills required to perform such tasks. She took these skills and used them in the process of interviewing (by invitation) an Indigenous writers group based in Canberra.

It is a measure of the rapport she has with such groups that she was invited to undertake such a commission. The results of these interviews are published in her PhD thesis in which she studied the empowerment of Indigenous women through writing practices.

I later met June whilst she was living in Wollongong at the local Indigenous community centre where I launched a collection of Indigenous Elder’s stories from the region. In this same building June was invited to read her poetry at the launch of an Indigenous artist’s exhibition.

June has a great deal of experience running workshops. She has recently facilitated workshops in writing, poetry, story telling and oral stories as inspiration for creative writing.

In her past, she was selected to represent Australia as a delegate at the International Festival of Young Playwrights in Townsville in 1996 with her play Immigrant Mother about her Mekeo mother endeavouring to fit in with life in Tasmania.

I have kept in touch with June over the years and have always been impressed with her creativity, enthusiasm, and ability to engage with different cultural groups from a wide variety of backgrounds.

I have the utmost respect for June and her ability as a writer and person. I have no hesitation in recommending June on the basis of her experience, skills, graciousness and intelligence.

Kathleen, Aboriginal Women’s Heritage Coordinator

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