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Mai Wiru Sugar Challenge Foundation Update

The Mai Wiru Sugar Challenge Foundation is rapt to say we have now raised $47k to bring our Palyaringkunytjaku project to fruition!

The foundation was founded by Damon in 2014 to support the achievements made through the work of community owned and directed organisations such as the Mai Wiru Regional Stores Council, Nganampa Health Council and Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (NYP) Women’s Council. That Sugar Film and the “Amata” sequence documented the plight of the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Land communities.

About Palyaringkunytjaku – Towards Wellbeing 

The project is the initiative of Inawantji (Ina) Scales, a young woman from the APY Lands. Ina has seen too many family and friends, too many Anangu (people from the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands), die from diet-related illnesses. Ina wants to give Anangu the same opportunity Hope For Health has given Yolngu in the top end.

The project will take ten senior, influential women to a two-week intensive health and nutrition retreat where they will learn and personally experience first-hand the benefits of healthy eating and living. They will then return to the community to share their experiences and become healthy living champions.

The aim

To work with the participants to incorporate a healthier way of life into their communities through their first-hand experience of the benefits of reducing sugar in their diet.  

By taking people out of their everyday environment, for a period of time we will relieve them of their daily duties at home and in community. This will free participants to focus, distraction-free, on learning the extensive information that will be provided.

The presence of our interpreter will ensure a richer sharing and learning experience. The participants are selected based on their ability to share their skills and new knowledge on their return, when they will impart the knowledge themselves, rather than being reliant on staff.

Next steps

Our volunteers continue to work hard in the background, raising funds and preparing a two-week intensive nutrition workshop to be held in Byron Bay. We are also working with the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Women’s Council to arrange our participants. 

With thanks! 

This progress has been made possible with significant donations from the folk at The Byron Bay Lighthouse Run and the Qantas ‘Side-by-Side’ program for airfares, plus funds raised by a variety of other generous groups and our wonderful individual supporters. A special shout-out to Lisa Parkes-Jetha from SeeChange who has done a lot of the legwork in arranging various elements of this retreat.    

We are ready to turn Ina’s dream- to offer an immersive educational and physical experience to a number of APY Land elders – into a reality!

Once we have confirmed dates and participants, we will bring you more news. 

Learn more about the Mai Wiru Sugar Challange foundation or donate via the Mai Wiru website.

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