Camden Haven High School is an inclusive school and to recognise this diversity we include traditional Birpai language and Totems as part of our school houses.
The Birpai people are the traditional custodians of our local country. The Birpai people have Totems that govern Lore, the Totems are a connection to Country, songlines, and help to maintain balance in community. They provide a link between the natural world and kinship relationships with spiritual beliefs and personal responsibilities. Belonging to a Totem bestows upon the individual responsibilities and obligations for maintaining knowledge and the adoption of other practices to protect and conserve the species.
Camden Haven High School have joined with our traditional owners in sharing these responsibilities and obligations by incorporating Totems to be part of our four School Houses. As part of this Camden Haven High School have combined our house names with the native language of our area, Gathang.
The Student Representative Council (SRC) with previous coordinators Mr Brent Wilkinson and Miss Sally Woodhouse travelled around the local area and wrote the content of the video that was filmed by Miss Natalie Aldous and Mr Aiden Spelling on the drone.
The school would like to thank Aunty Rhonda Radley and the Birpai Local Land Council for their support and contributions to the creation and development of the House Totems.
The project was a combined effort, spearheaded by Mr Phil Baker and Mr Brent Wilkinson, and involved many students, staff and the wider community.
Thank you to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students Hamish Cook-Webber and Kyra Evans for creating the artwork that formed the base of the crest and Demi McNamara for her supporting role. Mr Daniel Baker then turned the artworks into digital designs with the help of Mr Rob Newell. Miss Natalie Aldous created the flags and produced the video to display all this hard work!
Camden - Wurran
The Goanna is a significant Totem to all Birpai people.
Haven - Dinuni
The shark is the major sea Totem of all Birpai people.
Taylor - Wambuyn
Several species of Kangaroo share Totems to different groups of Birpai, with the Eastern Grey most closely linked to the clans of the Comboyne area.
Watson - Biluun
The stingray is most closely associated with the northern-most Birpai clan around Point Plomer.