On 28 June 2017, nine students along with Ms Durand, Mr Collis and myself boarded a Qantas flight to Darwin to begin our Northern Territory Immersion. After a four and a half hour flight we arrived in Darwin to a very pleasant 32 degrees celsius. From there we caught taxis to our first overnight stop which was the Value Inn on Mitchell Street. The accommodation was very basic but clean. We then, again caught taxis to the Catholic Education Office for a cultural understanding talk with some teachers who had worked in Wadeye. A very insightful talk.
After a stroll through downtown Darwin we ended up at Port Darwin where we enjoyed a pleasant dinner while watching the sunset.
The next morning was an early start as we needed to be at Murrin air services for an 8am flight. The group was split up into 2 and we flew on twin engines Cessnas to Wadeye. Our flight took approximately an hour.
We landed in Wadeye and were greeted by Chris Moore who works as part of the administration staff at the school. Chris was our chaperone for the next five days along with David King. Some of the staff who were away for bush holidays kindly offered their houses to us for accommodation.
Over the next week and a half the students had to organise and plan for three meals a day and washing and cleaning up after themselves. We engaged in numerous activities including giving the church a new coat of paint, travelling to country on three occasions visiting the local owners and being able to share in their culture. We were fortunate enough to spend time with the local children at the community pool, the Sport and Recreation Centre and down on the oval where the locals were able to display their amazing agility and AFL talents. We were also involved in a recycling initiative raising money for the community.
We are one of very few people that were able to have the opportunity to immerse ourselves in a very old culture in our own backyard. A unique and wonderful experience was had by all.