Proud Yuin artist, producer and radio host, Nooky has launched a platform dedicated to inspiring, equipping and empowering Indigenous youth to succeed, called – We Are Warriors.

This cultural movement and platform is designed to connect Indigenous youth to First Nations role models.

Nooky spoke to the National Indigenous Times about the inspiration behind the name, saying “when I was struggling as a young lad, my Mother looked at me and said three very powerful words – We Are Warriors.”

“It lit a fire inside of me. We need to be proud of who we are and remember that our ancestors have walked these paths before us, and plenty of people are walking the same path as we are now.

“We need to look inside of us and tap into our inbuilt strength, drive and confidence – that’s our warrior. And that warrior will give us the strength to create our own path.”

“We deserve to be recognised, we deserve to be heard and we deserve to be celebrated. As people. As role models. As warriors.”

We Are Warriors harnesses the power of Indigenous achievement across music, fashion, sport and other industries in an evolving, accessible platform.

Launching on January 26th, Nooky told the National Indigenous Times that “January 26 really stood out to us and made a whole lot of sense as the launch date.”

“Jan 26 represents a day of mourning for us as it was the start of the invasion, meaning there’s death and trauma attached to this date.

“Launching something as powerful as WAW on this day gives this date life, strength and power.”

Six Indigenous ambassadors are spearheading the launch – Luke Currie-Richardson (Bala Luke), BARKAA, Charlee Fraser, Felicia Foxx and Kobie Dee.

BARKAA spoke on her experience spreading words of strength, saying “you grow up with this tough skin where you’re like, I’m stronger than everybody, I can be what I want to be.”

“I can do more than those people who persecuted me for being a black fella, now I’m doing 10 times better than them,” she said.

“We come from greatness, we come from the first of many, the first people on this earth, we know how to hold our culture strong. You are born black and gifted. Chest out, head up.”

Coinciding with the launch Nooky has dropped his newest single Run Dingo via Bad Apples Music.

Nooky said that “the concept for Run Dingo came about last Invasion Day when I was sitting at home with my daughter.”

“I was thinking about the prejudice and racism I experienced as a child growing up here in Australia and how my daughter was inevitably going to experience those things too.’

“Invasion Day is a draining day for us and I started laying down how I was feeling sitting there with my daughter reflecting on my childhood.

“One of my brother boys had shown me a song called ‘Run Dingo Run’ by Black Allen Barker back in 2010 with the idea that I should sample it.

“The lyrics in the song talk about the dingo cullings and there being a price on a dingos head, drawing a comparison with blackfullas.

“Like Allen, I feel there’s a price on our heads too, especially when being vocal about certain issues and topics. I took the song idea and sample to one of my main producers, Solo, and that’s how ‘Run Dingo’ was born.”

By Teisha Cloos