My name is Medika Bonney and I am a proud Gunditjmara, Narungga, Gunnai, Boon Wurrung and Wemba Wemba woman. I am an Impactor here at Clothing The Gaps Foundation. My role consists of co-hosting programs, helping facilitate Trad Games with schools and groups, creating content and tools for events of the Foundation, and helping out in the store or in the warehouse when needed. Today, I am sharing with you my experience in facilitating Trad Games workshops and some of the fun I have had along the way.
Traditional Aboriginal Games (Trad Games) is an experience offered by the Foundation where Lena (Impact Coordinator) and I get to go out to Community, workplaces, and school groups to play and share Traditional Games that have been played by Aboriginal people for thousands of years. It is a great way to engage with Mob and younger people, and while it increases our physical activity it allows us to have fun and learn something new.
We love sharing our favourite games from the Yulunga Indigenous Games resource. It has pages full of different Mob’s games that they used to play and why. Our favourite go-to games are Weet Weet, Wana Wana, Pulyugge, which are simple throwing, catching, hitting, and tagging games. The most popular game voted by the kids is Pulyugge, which they connect with netball.
Trad Games is an opportunity for us to share reflections on the games that were played here long before mainstream ones were around. One of our favourite questions to ask is…”Does Pulyugge remind you of netball, or does netball remind you of Puluygge?”
Unfortunately, due to Covid, we have not been able to play Trad Games in person for a very long time. It was sad to have to stop for a time because it was always a nice way to get out of the office and connect with mob. But now, since opening up slowly, we have been able to take more and bigger groups, which is exciting.
Link to Yulunga Traditional Indigenous Games:
Trad Games with E.J Whitten Foundation (RULE) at the Cinema Pop Up
Clothing The Gaps Foundation have been working alongside the E.J Whitten Foundation (now RULE) since 2019 to engage Community in early conversations about health and wellbeing. In 2021, we hung out together at the Cinema Pop Up. This is where we set up our Trad Games area for the kids and their families to play together before they sit down and enjoy the movie. This partnership and opportunity have allowed us to travel to Echuca/Moama, Shepparton, Stawell, and Warrnambool. We hope to continue getting around Victoria to meet some new faces and be able to do what we love.
As you know we are all about getting moving and shaking up our health and wellbeing! So, what’s a cosy family movie night without snacks?... healthy ones of course! For every child that participated in the session, we handed out a snack pack containing yummy snacks such as popcorn, fruit, kombucha, muesli and chocolate chickpeas for them to share with their whole family.
The most recent events have seen us spending more time in the country-towns connecting with local mob and encouraging them to join us the next day at their local parkrun. We promote the morning activity the night before at the Cinema Pop up for families to come down and join in for the free 5km walk/run. So far, we have park ran on Yorta Yorta, and Gunditjmara country and hope to clock up a few more as we go.
Here is the link to Park Run if you are interested in taking part or wanting to share with others: https://www.parkrun.com.au/
Trad Games with Dandenong Aboriginal District Youth Group
Recently, we went up to Boon Wurrung country to play Trad Games with the Dandenong Aboriginal District Youth Group and it was a success. It was a lovely day, and the kids all from different ages seemed like they were having a ball. We played our favourite games and after we gave the kids a chance to win some prizes, by answering some questions we ask to see if they were listening. They were such an awesome group and hopefully we can get back out there again.
Where we are playing Trad Games next
Right now, we have one of the most exciting bookings ahead of us this Friday, we will have the whole day out playing Trad Games and talking all things Free The Flag with Brunswick South Primary School, which has been the longest session we’ve had booked for a long time. We are so grateful to have a lot of opportunities that schools, mentoring groups, corporations and kindergartens give us to be able to get moving and celebrate culture.
How to book a Trad Games session with us
Book a Trad Games session with us through this link:
Remember that Trad Games is for everyone, no matter background, age, or ability. And one of the best things about playing these games is that you can alter it however you like to suit yours and your player’s needs. So, please get to booking for you and your next workplace, school, or group… we can’t wait to see you!