Budburra Books is about storytelling.
We are a not-for-profit organisation, based in the Indigenous community of Cherbourg in South-East Queensland.
Our aims are to encourage a love of learning, literacy and the arts, and to build on cultivating pride in local Indigenous culture, drawing on cultural strengths, historical ties and artistic skills.
It is about engaging children, community members and local artists to produce beautiful and professional books, art and films. Budburra Books aspires to share skills and ideas, and to promote dialogue, partnerships and friendships with children and adults from a range of diverse cultural backgrounds. It is about bringing people together.
In the process many aspects of creating books and films are explored, from developing researching and writing skills, encouraging different art styles and techniques of illustrating, mastering computer skills to assist with design and layout, to learning filmmaking methods and technical skills. To extend the impact of the project, students and adults also produce complimentary digital short films.
A collection of beautifully illustrated books have been professionally published. They cover a range of Early Years concepts, local history and personal narratives.
The books are designed to be supportive teaching tools in the school classroom and Early Years learning centres that allow several skills and strategies to be employed across a range of learning areas.
Some of the books are written using Aboriginal-English words. The intention is to acknowledge Aboriginal-English as a language that should be celebrated and used, and also that many young Indigenous children come to school with English as a second language.
Not only do the books provide language and literary value, each book is a stand-alone, lovingly produced work of art. The A4 format gives great scope to the visually stunning artworks and encourages any reader and viewer to engage with Indigenous perspectives in a range of ways.
Monies generated by book sales are put back into community-based literacy and art projects.
Budburra Books began as a project at Cherbourg State School in 2008, under the guidance of then Principal Jo Ross. The project started as a book creation program that was embedded into the curriculum, and utilised multiple approaches to developing language and art skills. Every child in the school was encouraged to get involved in bookmaking, and to create texts that were about them and their world.
This process worked well for a two-year period, but was dependent on leadership and curriculum directives, and it became too complicated to run an independent business at an Educational Institution, so Budburra Books Inc. was set up with the aim of continuing the work in and with the Cherbourg community. Esteemed members of the local community are at the heart of it, sitting on the Board and determining its direction.
Budburra Books relies on funding to continue its ongoing literacy and cultural projects.