Peek Whuurrong Elders are calling on the south-west community to learn about the Indigenous history of the region in a new video.
Part of Port Fairy Winter Weekends' virtual program Ngatanwaar - An Open Dooris calling on viewers to express their interest in seeing more Aboriginal language featured on signage.
Uncle Rob Lowe Senior and Uncle Locky Eccles share Peek Whuurrong history and personal stories in the seven-minute video directed by Mitchell Withers.
"We need to talk about the past, in order to move to the future," Uncle Rob said. "These local places hold important stories, many with sad endings.
"If people understand more about the old, and not-so-old stories, experiences from the '60s, '70s, '80s and '90s, then Indigenous and non-Indigenous people have better understanding and more connection to this place."
Set against stunning Port Fairy backgrounds, Ngatanwaar - An Open Door hopes to deepen understanding of Indigenous culture in the area since colonial settlement and in recent decades.
"Ngatanwarr means welcome in our language," Uncle Locky said. "During the time of the missions, our language was forbidden. It has been sleeping. Now, we are reawakening it."
Co-produced by Mel Steffenson the short film explores the cultural awakening of the Peek Whuurrong language among the south-west Indigenous community.
"It's been wonderful to see our language come alive on the screen," she said.
"A lot of people are coming forward saying they want to learn more - that's really exciting."
Port Fairy Winter Weekends program coordinator Amy Armstrong is inviting viewers to share their interest for more signs in native language across Port Fairy.
"The film prompts us to think how great it would be to see more Peek Whuurrong language around town and around the area," she said.
"Some of our kids are learning it in school and it would be amazing for the whole community, tourists and visitors to be learning too."
Event coordinator Loren Tuck said the call-to-action was the first step in adding simple signs reflecting the Peek Whuurrong heritage.
"We're interested to see if other people think if this is a good idea," she said.
"The film shows how language can unlock curiosity and acknowledgement of culture and this is an opportunity to learn more about true history.
"If other people support this other idea and then look at the next steps.".
Ngatanwarr and the Port Fairy Winter Weekends' virtual program has been supported by Regional Arts Victoria.
You can find more information via portfairywinterweekends.com.au/open-door
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