Kurdiji 1.0 – An app by Australian Indigenous Elders designed to save young Indigenous lives.
When a young man committed suicide in 2005, in the remote community of Lajamanu, local Warlpiri Elders said ‘Enough is enough’. Decades of western medical intervention had failed to stop Indigenous suicides and, in 2005, Lajamanu Elders took matters into their own hands.
With help from friends, Lajamanu established Milpirri Festival to spread the traditional ideas of ‘Kurdiji’ and among their young people and to foster a sense of belonging. They began to fight for every single young Indigenous life in their community.
Now those same Elders want to bring Kurdiji into the digital age, with a community created app based on stories, ceremonies, and law. They want to fight for all Aboriginal lives, not just those in remote or traditional communities.
They have partnered with an expert team including technologists, photographers, and a leading clinical psychologist from The Black Dog Institute. Kurdiji 1.0 is crowdfunding on Gofundme until Thursday 4th May people have the opportunity to donate $5 to make the project a reality.
The creation of the Kurdiji 1.0 app represents a turning point in Aboriginal Australia and Kurdiji hope this will result in similar projects being launched in the future.
In the process of sharing Kurdiji through their Milpirri Festival, the Elders of Lajamanu forged strong bonds with their non-Indigenous friends – some of whom had encountered ceremony for the very first time through the festival. Now some of those friends are working with Lajamanu Elders to make this app a reality.