Yesterday CRACA, Tully’s local arts centre, hosted an afternoon tea for some women visiting from Papua New Guinea.
They have been building ties with the local community and the plan is to make it possible for them to return here for seasonal work which will help support their families and projects back home.
All of the women were very accomplished, and within the group there was a farmer, business studies student, and a woman with a background of politics, as well as this they all had traditional handicraft skills.
They visited the arts centre to share some bags they made, and make connections with local artists. They have also visited local schools and a banana farm.
The afternoon tea was attended by writers, artists, gardeners, potters, weavers, the ladies’ hosts, and members of CRACA, the local Tully Arts Centre.
The women were given a warm reception and invitations to dinners and exchange handicraft skills were made for their return.
A fabulous afternoon tea was put on by CRACA, and some friendships forged.
There will no doubt by a write up in the local paper, as a local retired reporter who often writes for the paper was busy talking to the host and to the ladies.
It was a beautiful day, especially for me, as I come from Mekeo background (PNG Indigenous group.)
The women, although I have never travelled to my mother’s homeland were very kind and want to make me a bilum with Australian flag on one side and Papua New Guinea flag on the other.
As for me I am working on a photo book in return, as I am no good at handicrafts.
I joked that this skill has skipped a generation and made it into the hands of my daughter.
There was a lot of laughter and some skill sharing.
A memorable afternoon, and everyone looks forward to their return.