top of page

Yolŋu Pride Family 

There is an extremely high rate of domestic, family and sexual violence in Galiwin’ku and surrounding homelands, especially for the LGBTQIA+ community. Sadly, incidents of violence and abuse against our LGBTQ+ clients are so prevalent that it has become an inevitable and innocuous part of everyday life.


There was no safe space for the Sistagirls on the Island until Galiwinku Women Space started the Sistagirls Well-being Program in 2022. We are now the Galiwin’ku Pride Family, encompassing our ever-expanding members questioning or identifying within the LGBTQ+ community across North East Arnhem Land.

Every Tuesday night, 4pm - 7pm we have have our Yolŋu Family Pride Nights where we gather in a safe, inclusive environment. During our evenings together we share self-care tools, i.e. physical, mental and sexual health and wellbeing resources, and education.

On 28th May 2023 GWS hosted our inaugural LGTBQ+ DV Awareness Event. Our Pride Family members invited a safe person/people to join them in sharing LGTBQ+ DV information, our Sydney world Pride Video, ngatha (food) and a special dance performance from the group. 

There are nine Yolŋu communities within North East Arnhem Land and five are located on Islands. Geographically the remoteness from mainland services and resources already marginalises our Yolŋu communities.


Our grassroots goals seek to connect and build a physical presence for our Pride Family in each of these communities lead by the six Sistagirls that attended Sydney World Pride 2023.

  • Creating an LGBTQIA+ Education Resource Centre in Galiwin’ku 

  • Build local role models that represent our voice 

  • Community-education around employment pathways for Pride Family members

  • Provide education to community and family on identity, advocacy, discrimination, safety and allyship.

  • Offer LGBTQIA+ resource development in language

  • Offer presentations of local and global awareness of issues faced by LGBTQIA+ First Nations people in North East Arnhem Land

  • Educate our community on our experiences overseas and what it means to represent remote our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Pride Family on the world stage.

  • Build career pathways (study, work etc)

  • Create partnerships with national mental health providers so resources are more accessible and culturally- informed (Headspace, Beyond Blue, Lifeline, Minus 18 etc)     

  • Build cross-cultural relationships with other First Nations Pride communities locally and globally

  • Provide access to LGBTQIA+ medical and sexual health, appointments, resources and education which are currently not accessible in community.

Sista Girls

Sistergirl or Sista Girls is a term used by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to describe gender diverse people that have a female spirit and take on female roles within the community. Including looking after children and family. Many Sista girls live a traditional lifestyle and have strong cultural backgrounds.

Since 2017 GWS has been running annual International Women’s Day ‘Ladies Night Out’ event where all women in Galiwin’ku are invited to a fun night of dressing up, dancing, and celebrating each other and our achievements.

GWS also participates in multi-agency events such as workshops, markets, school camps, and expos to promote our work and engage with the community.

A community Laundromat will be part of the new building. The service design is still in development, but the goal is to provide access to industrial washing and drying machines for the entire community to benefit from.  

The campfire program started as informal meetings amongst teenage girls to talk about their relationships, their worries, really anything on their mind. Two young women that worked at GWS ran the sessions, providing food and a campfire for their peers to join. As the program grew, the women working identified specific groups, such as the different women’s footy teams, to have campfire nights with. They also developed educational activities to do while having conversations about topics like consent and violence. This program will hopefully run again once we move into the new building.

GWS engage regularly with the DFV service network in the NT and Australia through attending forums, conferences, and workshops all over the country. Our members are often invited as guest speakers which makes us very proud! This is an opportunity for our members to gain new experiences and build their confidence.

Details on how we incorporate Gurrutu in our services is currently being developed and will be published soon!

bottom of page