TSIMA Annual Report

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2019 - 2020 ANNUAL REPORT

PRESIDENT’S ADDRESS IVY TREVALLION Review of 2019-2020 for Torres Strait Islanders Media Association

Seu Ngapa, Maiem, and welcome, we are pleased to present the Torres Strait Media Association’s 20192020 Annual Report. TSIMA is proud to report that we have been servicing the people of the Torres Strait in media and communications now for 35 years. We continued to operate with major funding and support from the Torres Strait Regional Authority along with other key stakeholders like Sea Swift, IBIS/CEQ, Tagai State College, Queensland Health, My Pathways, TAFE North Qld and Skytrans, Torres Health, Arts Qld, Mura Kosker Sorority and First Nations Media Australia. In 2019-2020 TSIMA’s major achievement was hosting the 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival here on Thursday Island from the 22-27 September 2019. This was the last gathering of the festival and we hosted over 150 delegates from Remote Indigenous Communities across Australia. During this festival, TSIMA launched the Inaugural Torres Strait Performing Arts Festival. We continued to strive to support and involve the community by hosting several outside broadcasts at community events and having a presence at annual cultural gatherings. Our regular programmes continued to provide information community announcements, promotion of activities and communicate the latest news, views and issues of the region. Due to COVID-19, in the later part of the financial year, things were adjusted and done a little different, however we remained broadcasting throughout this time to provide the essential service to the community. We continued our commitment to leading in sound management and best practice for our growth and development as a service organisation.

The Remote Indigenous Broadcasting Service (RIBS) operated from Warraber and Erub while training began for the communities of Iama, Poruma and St Pauls in certificate 3 with TAFE North Qld. TSIMA Staff continued their development work plan in alignment with the strategic plans goals and objectives. The organisation was represented at the national media gathering, Converge hosted by FNMA in Alice Springs in November as we continue to be part of strengthening the First Nations Media Australia network. So on behalf of the board we would like to thank all the staff within the organisation for your contribution and commitment to the broadcasting and media industry here in the Torres Strait Region. The TSIMA Board also had several changes. Long time, outgoing board and Chairperson Mrs Margaret Cowley finished her time with us and we eso her for particularly her nine years at the helm of the TSIMA. TSIMA also welcomed Uncle Jimmy Gela back on the board and Jack Kepa as Vice President on to the TSIMA board. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my other fellow board members for your passion dedication and commitment to supporting our voice through media in our community. Your ongoing support throughout the year was invaluable.

Koeyma Eso, Ivy Trevallion President

STRATEGIC OVERVIEW 2017-2020 Our mission To connect the voices and culture of the Torres Strait through media Our values Respect – We acknowledge and value our cultural protocols and Ailan Kastom

Our measures of success • We will measure our success through the following performance indicators: • Growth in program outputs across the week • Growth in social media engagement

Integrity – We are honest, accountable and truthful in everything we do Transparency – We are clear and open in our communication Creativity – We engage our community and nurture creativity Partnership – We work with partners to deliver our services and expand our reach Our goals We will achieve our mission by delivering on the following four goals: • • • •

Engage audiences across multiple platforms Strengthen and grow the RIBS network Promote cultural heritage Build TSIMA as a stronger organisation

• Capabilities to include contemporary music and film production Increase in the number of functioning RIBS services • Increase in the level of community satisfaction with RIBS services • Partnerships with keeping places to preserve archival material • Growth in community access to archival material • Staff training plans implemented • Growth in annual income • Increase of level community and stakeholder satisfaction with TSIMA

OPERATIONS MANAGER’S REPORT DIAT ALFERINK Operations review for Torres Strait Islanders Media Association

TSIMA has achieved another year of growing our services and creating opportunities for community, storytelling and raising the awareness about the important contribution that our Indigenous media plays in our lives.

Board The TSIMA AGM was held on Saturday 22 February 2020, and we continued to strive to improve operations, and the functions of the board of management. Board Meetings were bi-monthly throughout this period.

The first Quarter of the year from July- September was getting ready for the 20th RIMF while staff conducted several outside broadcasts, training sessions, and prepared for the major event.

Broadcasting Program This year has been a busy and interesting year for the 4MW crew who have been broadcasting radio programs daily in lead up the Remote Indigenous Media Festival. In early October the station had a major technical breakdown in our radio play out system and had to revert to the simian system. This meant the temporary loss of all audio files and songs from our whole catalogue here at TSIMA. This time was very hard as Broadcasters as they had to find music again to play.

STAFFING: The year has been very eventful and has again presented many opportunities and challenges to the organisation. • Diat Alferink Operations Manager • Sylvia Tabua Senior Broadcaster/Producer (Training and Program) • Anthony Geagea Broadcaster return joined in January 2020 • Jen Enosa Senior - Broadcaster/Producer (RIBS & OBS) • Janelle Gebadi - Broadcaster • Daisy Aniba Administration and Finance Officer • Jordana Kris - Reception and administration officer till August 2019 • Luke Mosby – Reception and administration August- December, then January – June 2020 Youth Broadcaster

Scheduled Programs continued with TSIMA giving the opportunity to use the airwaves to talk about a number of issues including Health, Education, Politics, Community and Sporting Events, Government and Non-Government. RADIO Documentary Series Project Community broadcasting fund supported Tony Collin’s work to continue with our Broadcasters and we took this opportunity for another two week training block after the remote media festival. Jen Enosa Worked on her Rising Sea levels theme, Janelle on Arts and Culture and Sylvia Tabua on Leadership.

Remote Indigenous Broadcasting Service – RIBS Slowly but surely we are getting some progress with bringing more RIBS stations online. The ongoing issue of with high rental space again plagued the RIBS Network budget. TSIMA did however recruitment and began Certificate three in Radio and Screen and Media with TAFE Nth Qld. Niki Mackie from Poruma Ribs, Flora Taylor from St Pauls and enrolled in the course so that was good news. Raina Kepa a former broadcaster at Iama also expressed interest to get back into media aswell. The Remote Broadcasting Service operated in their respective communities of Erub and Warraber as a daily morning service from 8.30-12.30 Monday to Friday. Warraber and Erub broadcasted on the main TSIMA Network for 1 hour per week. Evan Wyatt continued to provided services to the RIBS network and highlights the need to increased maintenance funding to repair and relocate Mabuyag and Badu Island equipment. During this period we also Aquired the licencing fee for St Pauls community which make 7 Licences all up. Erub, Warraber, Iama, Poruma, Mabuyag, Badu and St Pauls. Torres Strait Performing Arts Festival With Major Funding from Arts Qld Backing Indigenous Arts program, TSRA Culture Arts and Heritage Program TSIMA delivered the Inaugural Torres Strait Performing Arts Festival here on Thursday Island in conjunction with the 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival. Supporting the contemporary performing arts in the region was an important way to see an increase in the artists development and give the opportunity to showcase the talent and skills in the community to build live performance experiences. A highlight of the Program was the development of the Karay Lingu Torres Strait Womens Choir. The Amazing group of senior Torres Strait Women came together during the lead up to the festival to write and compose nine original songs about life in the Torres Strait. Jessie Lloyd worked with these Ladies and they performed during the festival week for the first time. Also premiering the festival was the development of the contemporary dance theatre performance by young and local performers from the community. The work titled ‘Dance my Story’ an was about raising the awareness about Domestic Violence in our community. The finale event of the festival week was the History of Torres Strait Through Song Event. The Gathering Voices

concert involved over 80 Torres strait performers and worked with a house band to support solo, duo and groups perform as they retold the history of the region song by song. The concert was held in Anzac Park. Guest Artists included Joe Geia, Getano Bann, and Rochelle Pitt with returning Musicians Will Kepa, Danny Bani, Dimple Bani and Eddie Peters. Local Performers included Milton Savage and Kaurareg youth, Black Paradise, Ukele Gammas, Northern Exposure, Karay Lingu Womens Choir, Joey Tapau, AOG Community Choir and Jack and Gabriel Bani. Other Performers included Island Star dancers and another local dance team headed up by a Thomas Pedro. Partnership with First Nations Media Association TSIMA worked closely in the lead up to the 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival in particular with Daniel Featherstone and his team. With regular teleconferences as the event coordination increased. It was such a busy time for us with setting up a campsite on the Tagai College Campus during the school holiday break, there was ten city in the sport stadium, and the overflow of delegates stayed at Torres Strait Kaziw Meta. Catering was done by local community members each day and night and the TRAWQ Hall was used to host dinner, film nights and entertainment. Auspicing TSIMA did not do much Auspicing in this period due to the performing arts festival organising. We did however continue work on Mr Bua Benjamin Mabo’s contemporary music album. COVID Changes things up In the March to June period there was a lot of uncertainty with the developing situation across the world, nationally and locally. TSIMA started delivering weekly updates on air with the Torres Strait local disaster management team and this was received well with community in keeping them up to date. TSIMA also supported an increase in spiritual support on our Sunday programs with rotation of pastors. Additional to this we provided messages regarding safety precautions and restricted access to the building for any live interviews. Overall TSIMA got through a massive year of production and responded well to the changing environment, while keeping focused on the need to continue to deliver informative, interesting, culturally relevant and responsive media service for all our audiences, while maintain sound governance and strategic vision.

Dance My Story An Interpretive Dance Performance showcasing local Indigenous talent and raising awareness for Domestic Violence in the Torres Strait.

Dance My Story was performed at the Gab Titui Cultural Centre on Thursday 26th September 2019. The venue was at capacity with over 200 patrons. The purpose of the project was to create awareness of the important issue of family and domestic violence through utilising the creative arts as a platform. The Dance My Story ideation phase included discussions with Mura Kosker Sorority, the leading family wellbeing service in the region and speaking to survivors of family and domestic violence. Listening to the stories of resilience lead to the performance showcasing the strength of Torres Strait Islander women. TSIMA engaged the Pryce Centre of Culture and Arts to design the performance and create a safe atmosphere to deliver the compelling story. Torres Strait Islander performers and first-time dancers were engaged on the project. In the development phase, the Dance My Story team rehearsed over a three-month period, refined the performance with the help of Torres Strait Islander

musicians and writers located on Thursday Island. Songs were produced to be used in the performance, poetry was written and stories were told in a safe space. This process allowed for healing for survivors and the ability to share their strength and resilience with the audience through the performance. Community Groups offered their venues and spaces for rehearsals, costumes and stage decorations were donated and the Gab Titui Cultural Centre became the venue for the final performance. On the performance night, Mura Kosker Sorority Incorporated collected donations towards the Reclaim The Night Program and the audience was treated to a community meal after the performance. There was a discussion piece at the end that allowed the performers to engage with the audience and answer questions. Ultimately, the objective is to utilise the content created from the Dance My Story Project as a foundation to developing a series of future community resources around Domestic Violence awareness and support. One plan is to create two set of resource kits for community and clients and for social workers.

“Dance my story was a great way to bring the story of our community to the stage and make everyone think about how we going to break the cycle of Domestic Violence” Rita Pryce Artistic Director, Dance My Story

Photo: Dance My Story; Domestic Violence Live Performance

Re-Usable Domestic Violence Content Video of Dance My Story Performance (30mins) How to use: Target young people 12-26 years olds to raise awareness of Family and Domestic Violence. Host a watch party at the school Pre-written songs used in performance - Warrior Woman by Rita Kaitap and Nasona Pedro - Cycle by Bob Kaigey How to use: Songs of empowerment to share with community via CD and on air at RADIO 4MW. The lyrics can be included in resource kits and published on social media, websites and other platforms. Video of Dance My Story BTS (10mins) Includes reflection Interviews with community after the Dance my Story Performance

How to use: Share community feedback and reflections video as part of a Family and Domestic Violence Resource Kit. Poetry by Survivors Poems by two local Torres Strait Women and survivors of Domestic Violence. How to use: To be made into exercises for Social Workers engaging with clients and working through the developed resource Kits. Campaigns TSIMA and Mura Kosker to Create Radio Ad Campaign ustilising content from the Dance My Story Performance (1 minute ad). TSIMA to work with Mura Kosker to Develop 30mins Podcast interviews, discussions and songs.

Gathering Voices Concert A live concert bringing together leading Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal musicians from across the region, to celebrate and share the history of the Torres Strait through song.

Gathering Voices - an immersive two hour concert telling Torres Strait History through music and performance. The concert was hosted in ANZAC Park. Traditional Owners from the Kaurareg nation welcomed over 150 delegates from the First Nations media industry to Waiben (Thursday Island) this week for the 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival. Running from 22nd to 27th September, 2019 the 20th celebration of remote Indigenous media was the biggest yet with delegates travelling from every state, including some of the most remote communities in Australia. The event was co-hosted by the Torres Strait Islander Media Association (TSIMA Radio 4MW) and First Nations Media Australia, the national peak body for the First Nations media sector. Delegates from over 34 organisations, from all remote areas of the nation, participated in a packed week of skills workshops, forums and discussions, nightly cinema screenings, awards, cultural activities and a showcase of local contemporary music and arts.

Throughout the week representatives participated in six skills development workshops to expand their media skill-set in areas of podcasting, news production, digital storytelling, digitisation of archives, cinematography and producing music for film. The work produced within the skills workshops was incredible and will be shared on the First Nations Media Australia website soon after the festival. Reflecting on the cinematography workshop, Mark Pindan from Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media (PAKAM) said, “I’m a cameraman, but with the iPad it’s easier. Everything is really simple. And I learned new skills and made new friends, thank-you.” “I wanted to do this workshop because I don’t know anything about digital media,” reflected Jen Enosa from TSIMA.“It was a really good learning experience for me. What I learned made me understand about the powerful tools that we have here, not just for our communities, but reaching out to the world to tell our stories our way. I think the learning continues after this.” While the focus of the Remote Indigenous Media Festival was learning and sharing, there were plenty of opportunities for networking and developing partnership relationships

“I was honoured to MC at the Gathering Voices Concert. It was amazing to see everyone come together and enjoy a night of music and talent of the Torres Strait.” Sylvia Tabua MC at the Gathering Voices Concert

Photo: Gathering Voices Concert

between media organisations. Remote media workers and support teams shared information about training and industry development activities, connecting with audiences through new technology, storytelling in a digital age and sharing a preserving community collections, a particularly urgent issue of focus for media practitioners.

23-27 September 2019 TSIMA RADIO 4MW PRESENTS




Delegates engaged directly to ask questions of Representatives from the National Indigenous Australians Agency, the Coalition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peak Organisations (Coalition of Peaks), Bureau of Meteorology, AIATSIS, training organisations, screen agencies, funding bodies and community media supporters. Throughout the festival delegates contributed to the policy agenda of the First Nations media industry and heard updates on the progress of their national peak body, First Nations Media Australia.

Joe geia - ROCHELLE PITT - Nightshift

- jessie lloyD - Northern exposure - EDDIE PETERS - GETANO BANN - Joey Tapau - DANIELLA WILLIAMS - Custodians - black paradise + MORE OUTDOOR CINEMA


23 - 25 September 2019 7:30PM - 9pm | TRAWQ Hall | FREE

THURS 26 September 2019 7PM | GAB TITUI (outdoor stage) | entry by donation

Enjoy short films from remote Indigenous communities from across the country, will be screened over three nights. All welcome - family friendly event refreshments & snacks will be on sale. BYO chairs and mats to sit on.

An original PERFORMANCE PIECE exploring issues around domestic violence and how the cycle can be broken. Created with choreographer Rita Pryce and performed by local TALENT.

The Torres Strait Performing Arts Festival is part of the 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival - ‘Gathering Voices’ - co-presented by First Nations Media Australia and the Torres Strait Islanders Media Association. This festival is a biennial industry event for building the capacity of the remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander broadcasting, media and communications sector and celebrating their achievements. It celebrates the unique value of remote community media for language and cultural maintenance. Each night we invite the Thursday Island community to join us to enjoy a showcase of screen content at the evening cinema, and to recognise the achievements of remote media workers.

Proudly supported by

GATHERING VOICES CLOSING NIGHT CONCERT FRI 27 September 2019 6:30pm - 10pm | ANZAC PARK | FREE A live music event bringing together leading Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal musicians from across the region, to celebrate and share the history of the Torres Strait through song.

tsi performing arts festival

Performers tell stories of the Torres Strait Islands By JILLIAN MUNDY THE history of the Torres Strait region has been told through song in an amazing open-air concert, on Waiben (Thursday Island), to wrap up the inaugural Torres Strait Performing Arts Festival and the coinciding 20th Remote Indigenous Media Festival. Each performance told a story of different times in the history of islands – from the beginning of time when the people were ‘warriors and seafaring hunters and gatherers, trading, surviving and thriving’, to the ‘coming of the light’ (christianity) in 1871, the struggle for rights through the 1900s, the Mabo native title decision and the strength of women. The night closed with all the performers on stage for an impassioned rendition of Neil Murray’s My Island Home. Performers travelled to Waiben from other islands of the Torres Strait and others returned home from around Australia to be at the performing arts festival. Local community and visiting media festival guests were entertained each evening of the five day festival. There were film nights, dance and song performances, and an original theatre performance Dance My Story, which explored issues around domestic violence and breaking that cycle. Torres Strait Islander Media Association Radio 4MW hosted the festival. Their operations manager Diat Alferink, who has a background in festivals and events, hopes it will become a biennial event. She said it had been an opportunity to showcase talent, with several artists living on the mainland returning home in the lead up to run skills development workshops. “It’s really given people the chance to say ‘we can do lots of things’, and given people a feeling of unity, and like all festivals, coming together for positive things – it’s very healing,” she told the Koori Mail. “Our community has always been performing artists, this has rejuvenated the sprit of performing, and we want to encourage people to do more contemporary performing arts – dance, film, comedy, theatre, writing.” Every second year there is The Winds of Zenadth cultural festival (‘Zenadth Kes’ being the traditional name for the Torres Straits) on the island, showcasing traditional performance. The performing arts festival will alternate with this in the off-year. With the assistance of delegates from the media festival, the closing night concert was broadcast live on ICTV, on radio across the Torres Strait and central desert regions, and streamed live on Facebook.

Performing Arts Festival director Diat Alferink.


The Ukulele Gummas (sisters), mainly from the Eastern Islands of the Torres Strait – (back) Donna See Kee, Patty Nakata, (front) Margaret Gabey, Cessa Nakata and Pauline Ahwang. Cessa Nakata, the groups senior member is 92; she started performing when she was 50.

Joe Geia performing Yilul, which honours the 1970s Aboriignal movement and the design of the Aboriginal flag in 1972. Rochelle Pitt sings Resilience.

Dance My Story, a theatrical performance, starring local talent, and exploring issues around domestic violence and how the cycle can be broken, was part of the performing arts festival.


Just a small section of the performers who jumped back on stage for the closing performance – My Island Home.

Young Maia Mosby is mesmerised, with Mena Billy, Ella Gibuma and Geiza Lea from the Australian Christian Churches Choir.

Frontman of reggae band Black Paradise, Lonnie Pedro.

Mikalec Young of the Wabunen Geth dance team, perform a dance about the sea eagle, a totem of the people, with elders in the background singing.


tsi performing arts festival

The Island Star Dancers – Joey Laifoo Dancers, from Badu, danced the shark dance.

Media festival delegates from the cinematography workshop filmed the concert which was live-streamed to a potential 350,000 viewers. Pictured here is Mikayla Friday-Shaw from First Nations Media Australia getting some tips from Dervis Hasan.

William and Kali McKeown behind their popular dessert and popcorn stall with their children and community children Bethena Stephen, Maniah Eteru, Louisa Mene, Jennifer McKeown and William McKeown.

Jack Bani sang Torres Strait, a song composed by Cygnet Repu celebrating the design of the Torres Strait flag, with his father.

Two-year-old Vincent Tjanyinti Holder from APY lands took the opportunity to dance on stage beside the band.

Ina Tabo with niece Rosemary, Kobozi Tabo (front), Salu Tabo and Diana Passi looking forward to the concert starting.

Jay Benjiman, Sylis Ahmat, Ned David and Busan Laifoo had a front row spot.

Several people paid tribute to outgoing First Nations Media Australia manager of seven years Daniel Featherstone.

Getano Bann sang I am Black about the struggle for rights.


Eddie Peters, who returned home from Adelaide for the festival, sang Together as One, acknowledging the shared history, both black and white.

The Lingu Karay (meaning handle of basket) TSI Women’s Choir – (back) Louise Manas, Thamey Lui, Mariana Babia, Leonora Adidi, Margaret Gabey, Rita Kaitap, (front) Zesse Lloyd and Nazareth Adidi, pictured after one of their festival performances, at TRAWQ Hall, which was decorated in colourful flags. They sang songs they composed about life as a woman, their culture and their role.


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