Film shows that art centres help Elders

A new film from the National Ageing Research Institute (NARI) highlights the essential role of art centres in supporting older Indigenous people — many of whom are Elders — to keep culture, Country, language and kin strong for their communities.

The film, Art Centres Keep our Elders Connected, will be screened by SBS-TV during NAIDOC Week and explores the significant role that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community-controlled art centres play in nurturing the health and wellbeing of older people and people living with dementia in remote communities across Australia.

As part of the celebrations for NAIDOC Week, Art Centres Keep our Elders Connected will be screened on the Super Screen in the Plaza at Bedford Park from 3.10pm on Wednesday 6 July. The film runs for 20 minutes.

The film was developed as part of a research collaboration initiated by the National Ageing Research Institute. The research shows art centres are important and safe places for older artists to fulfil their roles as Elders, and to facilitate the transfer of knowledge and culture to younger generations within their communities.

The research also learned that many centres are delivering direct care for older artists, including helping them with errands, prompting them to take their medication, providing meals and mobility assistance, and supporting them to access and navigate services.

“It’s a very special model as it has the cultural, the social, as well as the economic, that come together in a holistic way,” says Dr Maree Meredith, Director of the Poche Centre for Indigenous Health.

Art Centres Keep Our Elders Connected will be screened by SBS on Wednesday 6 July 2022 at 3.10pm as part of NAIDOC Week, and will be available via SBS On Demand.

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