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Remains return home

Friday, 7th April, 2017

Badger Bates explaining how the remains are to be buried. Badger Bates explaining how the remains are to be buried.

The ancestral remains of 10 Barkindji people were re-buried in Kinchega National Park on Tuesday in the largest repatriation in the park’s history.

It took Heritage Division and the community around three years to recover the remains from museums across Australia and bring them all home together.

“Barkindji elders and Heritage Division staff travelled to Sydney last week to collect the remains from Sydney University,” said Merv Sullivan of the Heritage Division’s Repatriation and Conservation Team.

“They were then buried at the Park’s repatriation grounds, a special, dedicated place that is well maintained,” Mr Sullivan said.

“More than 50 people gathered for the ceremony, including students from Menindee Central School, that included a smoking ceremony and traditional dance.”

Mr Sutherland said that the task of finding and returning the remains to their home country was well worth the effort.

“Returning these ancestors home was an important occasion because it also allowed the community to include the younger generation to witness their traditions at the dedicated repatriation ground for the Barkindji people,” he said.

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