Healing times for Bowraville families

Delphine Charles (right) with Leonie Duroux and Clinton's father Thomas Duroux at the Red Dust Healing program in Tenterfield.
Delphine Charles (right) with Leonie Duroux and Clinton's father Thomas Duroux at the Red Dust Healing program in Tenterfield.

Twenty-six years into the fight for justice following the murder of Clinton Speedy-Duroux and two other indigenous children in Bowraville in 1990/91, the Speedy/Duroux extended family were in need of some emotional healing.

They found it in a three-day Red Dust Healing program run at the RSL Pavilion in Tenterfield from March 14-16.

The program was one of a raft of suggestions made to the 2014 NSW Parliamentary Law and Justice Committee that heard the family’s grievances.

Clinton’s nephew Elijah Duroux said he could see a change in the group over the three days, from being stressed and unhappy to becoming more relaxed and enjoying each other’s company.

“Generally the only time I see everyone is funerals.” Elijah said.

“It’s good to get together on a good note, and healing together.”

He said the program had equipped him with a lot of tools to overcome stress and anxiety, and he came out feeling refreshed.

“It assured me that I could depend on myself to deal with problems. I don’t have to take them out on myself, or on others. The solutions are inside me.”

Elijah said the new skills would help him with other loss in his life, including the death of his father Marbuck back in 2009.

Delphine Charles, Clinton’s sister-in-law, said the program was very good at bringing out issues and giving participants ways to deal with them.

“It’s about finding the tools within yourself to handle things like stress, rejection and depression … and having the confidence in yourself to do that,” Delphine said.

She said she was looking forward to sharing the message with those who were unable to attend, so they could also benefit.

“When we arrived we all looked a bit stressed and tired, and not real happy. This has brought out the best in us. The kids are more relaxed, which means the mums are more relaxed. It’s a domino effect.

“This type of program could benefit a lot of people in the community. We’re all the same, no matter whether we’re black, white and something in between.

“This is about just being the best person we can be.”