To document, analyse and evaluate the Rites of Passage Ball as a means of understanding urban Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community practices of space-making, directed towards locating, affirming and celebrating young men and woman.
- Describe an existing urban Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ritual that celebrates the ‘coming of age’ of young Indigenous men and women (Rites of Passage Ball).
- Investigate the impact of ritual upon young Indigenous men’s social and emotional wellbeing and their role(s) within their family and community.
- Examine the expectations of urban Indigenous young men, exploring the varying ways in which they enact and challenge racialised, cultural and gender expectations.
Project Leader: Dr Chelsea Bond, Senior Lecturer, University of Queensland’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit,
Project partner: Inala Wangarra
Administering organisation: The University of Queensland
Project timeline: 1 March 2018—31 March 2019 .
This participatory action research project primarily used film, in-depth interviews and photovoice to gather qualitative data from young men participating in the 2018 Rite of Passage program, their partners, families, and stakeholders.
The research project utilised a Participatory Action Research framework and the Most Significant Change technique for participants to explore the significance the program had upon their lives.
The project findings indicate that Rites of Passage and Rituals like the Inala Wangarra should be celebrated as it shows the value and legitimacy of young Indigenous men in an urban Indigenous community; a community constructed as economically poor, yet culturally rich.