Babies welcomed to the community at Ipswich Hospital

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies were blessed with a smoking ceremony by community Elders at the Ipswich Hospital Yarning Circle.

More than 100 proud family and grandparents watched on as the babies were entertained by traditional dancers and music as well as receiving a gift.

Thirty-eight babies born in the past year, ranging in age from six weeks to six months were placed on a coolamon (a dish carved from a tree) covered in animal skin for photos after they received their certificate.

Twins Elli and Rahni Shaw with their mother on the left Emily Michie and her friend Lingi Taviliniu-Valu on the right.

The Welcome Baby to Community acknowledges the infants’ connection to the lands on which they are born.

West Moreton Health chief executive Dr Kerrie Freeman said it was a moving event.

“We began a new tradition at West Moreton Health last year, to welcome Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies who were born in our community, at a Welcome Baby to Community ceremony,” she said.

 “Today was a very special occasion where Traditional Elders welcomed each and every child and family at the Yarning Circle in Ipswich Hospital.”

Welcome Baby to Community will be held twice a year, with the next ceremony planned for mid-year.

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