What does Wunan mean
“Wunan” is a traditional ritual of Aboriginal people in the East Kimberley in which fair trade occurs and which also encompasses caring and sharing.
The “Wunan” name was officially adopted for the East Kimberley region by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) in 1990.
This extract from Wyndham Yella Fella by Reginald Birch, a founding director of Wunan Foundation, helps to explain its meaning:
“A group of Aboriginal men appeared out of nowhere…symbolically marked in vivid white ochre and a burnt red like the very rocks of the Kimberley. The messengers carried huge bundles of ochre-coloured bamboo. This ritual was called ‘Wunan’… a traditional distribution of wealth, a bartering. A means of caring and sharing — Aboriginal currency.”
Birch, Reginald (2003) Wyndham Yella Fella, Magabala Books, Broome WA, p153.