I am Tania Schafer-Bostock from Mununjali & Bundjalung people and I have a dream …

Provide equitable access to Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander historical records held in Information institutions focusing on Queensland and discuss contemporary library issues on why this is not occurring.
My aim is to open this knowledge digitally to remote Queenslander’s, to remove the economic and geographical barriers, in order to empower and educate.

Through opening up historical documents we become educated, otherwise ‘Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.’

Providing information from a non Eurocentric point of view, we gain a diverse perceptive of what was really occurring.  Which have been highlighted through Henry Reynolds books on Forgotten Wars or Bruce Pascoe Dark Emu Black Seeds: agriculture or accidents? J.G. Steeles Aboriginal Pathways in Southeast Queensland and the Richmond River. 

Through information we educate ourselves and those around us and then progress on-wards to reconciliation. 

I have a dream and this online platform “Wantima” is my outlet, it means “Rising Up”. The name came from Vocabularies of Four Representative Tribes of South Eastern Queensland, page 69 from the English to Yugarabul translation.

Wantima is about “Standing up” after been pushed around and hit down and getting back-up after each hit, to take another hit and to keep taking hits even in a losing battle for what you know is right.

I want to change the library system to include Indigenous library issues, such as adding Indigenous Immigration to the Dewey Decimal classification or demonstrating my Field of Dreaming ideology of “if you build it, they will come”.  Wantima is the building blocks for an online presence for information institutions to follow. 

Wantima will abide to copyright and other enforced laws against our rights, but shall point to these resources and their location for clients to know that institutions are holding this material.  Wantima will not seek cultural clearance for material that is readily available on open access in information institutions and which is view-able in the public domain and freely available digital via online platforms.   

I hope that Wantima will become obsolete once GLAM [Galleries; Libraries; Archives & Museum] information institutions go beyond their custodian role, to sufficiently take on the role of servicing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients’ needs in digitally accessing Indigenous collections and information. 

GLAM organisations need to go beyond progress exhibitions and public programming projects into networking with each other to share resources to services via the library catalogue and online platforms.  Until this occurs Wantima shall become a transitional bridge to demonstrate what can be accomplished …

Wantima will:- 

  • bend the rules and think outside the box to assist clients and information institutions staff.
  • create policies and procedures as examples to open discussion.
  • attempt to make information user-friendly and community base relevant for clients.
  • review Gallery/ Genealogical Society, Library, Archives /Associations, Museum and Indigenous Institutions to link and share material online.
  • connect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to collections.
  • to voice diverse ideas in the mainstream.

If you have feedback or inquiries, please contact me at wantima.net@gmail.com or if you would like to become a volunteer, I have activities that you can perform to become a Wantima Warrior.

Wantima (Feb 2019)… my journey has only just started and I will add to this site slowing as I am only one individual and I will giving up in 2030.

.. Until then lets see what the power of “one” can achieve …