The Tangentyere Women's Family Safety Group and The Ford Foundation
The Tangentyere Women's Family Safety Group 2022 Annual Retreat
As part of the three-year “Tangentyere Collective Care project”, in April 2022, EQI facilitated a four day self-and collective-care retreat with the Tangentyere Women’s Family Safety Group.
The retreats, facilitated annually from 2021, are an opportunity for the Tangentyere Women's Family Safety Group to step away from their daily lives and commitments, and come together to dedicate time for self and collective care, strategy, rest, and renewal.
Working to end family violence is challenging and long term, with Aboriginal women in Australia’s Northern Territory among the most victimised in the world.
This year's retreat was held at Kings Canyon Resort, which was very special for several of the group members as they are traditional custodians for that Country. For them, it held particular meaning that the retreat was held On-Country.
We worked closely with the Tangentyere Women’s Family Safety Group, and were funded by The Ford Foundation, through the three-year Tangentyere Collective Care project.
This year, sessions included a bush medicine workshop, dot painting, hunting for bush tucker, cultural tours, bush walks and movie nights! We also had opportunities for the younger women in the group to lead and show intergenerational care for the older ladies.
EQI’s role was to organise and facilitate the retreat, which included sessions on self-care, strategic planning, and healing. Each session was designed to play to the individual women's strengths and gave them a chance to showcase their knowledge and skills, and to care for others.
A strong women’s movement depends on the resilience of grassroots feminist leaders, both now and into the future.
Groups need opportunities to foster younger leaders, continue tradition, and to rest, strategise and renew, both as activists and individuals. These retreats provide an opportunity to do this.
For members of the Tangentyere Women’s Family Safety Group, their work on the front lines doesn’t end at the end of the working day. Many members themselves have lived experience of family violence, and have connections to, or live in, the communities they support. In addition to this, the members all do vast amounts of unpaid care work for children, grandchildren, and sick relatives. This retreat was a rare break, and an opportunity for them to find strength and healing by connecting to culture and Country.
This retreat is part of a series of initiatives we are working on, piloting new approaches to supporting feminist leaders most affected by gender inequality and violence against women and girls.
- Read about the Rante-rante ampe Marle and Urreye! (Safe, Respected and Free from Violence) Projects Evaluation
- Learn more about the Tangentyere Family Violence Prevention Program
- Read the article Safe, respected and free from violence: preventing violence against women in the Northern Territory, published 3 December 2021 in The Conversation