Our Journey

The Strong Kids Song

A mix of Kulama and Hip Hop, Old Language and English, Voices of the Ancestors, Grandmothers and kids. A song for today drawing strength from the past.

Ngariwanajirii The Strong Kids Song project Karri alalinguwi wurrukurunyuwi wurrima. Wuta awungarri wurumungurumi nginingawula. Awarra pupuni ngirramini. Awarra wurraningurimagi.

When they grow into young women and young men they will understand about our culture. This important culture. Wherever they go it will be with them.

The Strong Women from the Tiwi Islands enjoy a collective sense of identity through knowledge of songs that keeps them strong and proud. As senior women in their community, they have become increasingly concerned that young Tiwi people are straddling two cultures and losing connection with their Tiwi heritage. This has led to a renewed determination to preserve the knowledge of the ancestors and connect the younger generation with their elders.

The Strong Women believe song is the way to teach messages of empowerment, pride, identity and social responsibility while inspiring a reconnection with culture and language.

The Strong Kids Song project is the result. Through 2010 and 2011 the women’s groups in Wurrumiyanga, Milikapiti and Pirlangimpi, on the Tiwi islands got together with young people to listen to old songs, talk about solving problems and share stories. 

Together the women and their grandchildren composed lyrics with a positive message for life as well as concepts of ancestry and connection to country. English lyrics were translated back into Tiwi song language and old Tiwi country melodies were arranged into new musical styles.

The CD comprises 9 tracks and includes four different versions of the lyrics that were created by the group; traditional singing of the performed by elder women, an arrangement by the women’s group, a version sung by the kids at Pularumpi primary school and an extended dance mix.

The other tracks are community songs chosen by the group. Evita Puruntatameri and her school mates won the Award for best Youth Language Preservation Project from the National Resource Centre for Language Diversity in 2012.

Karri ngumpuriyi kapi ngawa murrakupuni Ngini wutawa walima api ngawa kuwayi ngumpurumi

When we enter our country we can feel their spirit calling us

Kapi ngawa ampi ngini yinukuni ngarimuwu najingawula Tiwi ngawayati ponki ngarrimi

Make proper law to live well for a long time To share, to keep our peace and remember

Ngariwanajirri ngawurra ninguru magi awarra ngini ngawa ampi ngamaninguwi putuwurumpura ngajirti awa jawaya mulujupa Tiwi ngirramini ngini ngawa ngampangiraga

Ngariwanajirri working together to listen and helping one another. Hang on to old stories from our ancestors that they left behind Let us not lose our culture and the language we speak

Ngawatu kapinganki kakarrijuwi ngawurraningirrumarri nginingawula ngirramini

We young people get together.

Ngawurra ngungurrumagi ngini ngawa ampi ngirramini putuwurrumpurra

We remember our ancestors’ stories

Ngawa ngawutimarti kakarrijuwi ngini pupuwi pumatama

We want our children to be strong and healthy and to follow the right path.

Ngawurra ngingurrumangi amintiya kukunari ngawurami

We support one another and are happy and to be strong people.

Pilingawa yati ngaparinga ngingingawula pupuni ngirramini

We are the Tiwi that speak our Tiwi language