Each year, to coincide with the posting cycle, DCO hosts a series of events to welcome new Defence families to local areas. This year's event for Tindal families was held at the Godinmayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Cultural Centre in Katherine. Newly posted Defence families wandered through the 62 information stalls and discovered more about their new community. DCO Family Liaison Officer, Shaz Lauder, said the day was a wonderful success with around 400 people in attendance.
ADF members who have different careers and life experiences share their personal stories about how staying connected helped them and their families, including through difficult times. It also provides advice from a mental health professional and DCO on the importance of supporting each other and getting help when you need it.
'We had a new venue and a new format,' Shaz said. 'This is the first time we've held the expo off-base and it allowed us to open it up for wider community participation'. Shaz said performances and demonstrations, showcasing local talent were a hit with the crowd.
'The artists from Mimi Arts and Craft played didgeridoo and painted throughout the day.' 'The Amazing balloon twister had children lined up in front of her for the whole event – waiting to order one of her wonderful balloon sculptures.'
There was a'real sense of connectivity' amongst those who attended, according to Shaz. 'It was what we hoped to achieve - a place to come together and find out what the region has to offer.'