• "To me, it’s one of the best things I’ve ever gone to as an elder”: Elaine Binge Gomeroi Inverell Edlers Group. (Supplied)
Memories of dancing and playing in their youth will come flooding back to hundreds of Elders who have gathered for Thursday’s Aboriginal Elders Olympics in Nelson Bay.
By
Philip Ly

Source:
NITV News
6 Apr 2016 - 1:36 PM  UPDATED 6 Apr 2016 - 1:37 PM

The one-day event is a way for Elders to gather and have their health cared for in a social sport setting, while being recognised and respected for who they are and what they represent.

Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council is hosting the games for 25 teams on behalf of the Worimi Wuburay Elders. 

About 400 Elders from as far as Inverell and Dubbo will take part in the ninth Aboriginal Elders Olympics. 

The council’s chief executive Andrew Smith says no words can describe how crucial it is to hold the games, which include activities such as relay racing, quoits and bean bag throwing among the activities.

“We can’t forget who our Elders are and what they’ve given to us and we have a responsibility to care for them,” Mr Smith says.

“The Elders are excited for this almost every day of the year leading up to it."

“It gives them purpose and it’s not just the day, but it’s the lead up to the day, and it’s the day and night and gathering of Elders within each individual community.”

He says it’s an Elders’ knockout.

Inverell Elder Elaine Binge says she’s never seen so many Elders in one place before and for her, it’s a cultural gathering.

She says it’s a time to meet old friends and make new ones.

“To me, it’s one of the best things I’ve ever gone to as an Elder,” Mrs Binge says.

“Most times when we need to see each other it’s at funerals, but this day is not about being sad and sorry.

“It’s about being happy, enjoying ourselves and doing something wonderful that we want, and we’re proud to be a part of it.” 

The one-day event kick offs at 9am on Thursday April 7, 2016, at the Tomaree Sports Complex, Nelson Bay.