(Image: Yothu Yindi Foundation website)

The Yothu Yindi Foundation’s Garma Festival will make its much-anticipated return in 2022 after a two-year absence due to COVID.

The 22nd annual Garma Festival will run for four days from the 29th of July, at Gulkula, a significant Yolngu ceremonial site about 40km from Nhulunbuy on the Gove peninsula.

Tickets for this year’s event will go on sale at 10am on Tuesday April 19, with guests required to be up to date with vaccinations and provide a negative RAT before entering.

The Yothu Yindi Foundation will be working with Miwatj Aboriginal Health, the NT’s Chief Health Officer and the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre to ensure a COVID-safe event for all on site.

Tagalak woman and YYF CEO Denise Bowden said this year’s event was a chance to celebrate the success of the Foundation’s education work in northeast Arnhem Land, and to reconnect with friends and families from around the country.

“There’s always a lot of excitement in the air ahead of Garma, but it feels extra special this year after so much time apart,” Mrs Bowden said.

“Our art centres are bursting at the seams with new work to share with our guests, and local bands and musicians are jumping at the chance to get back onstage and perform again.”

The theme for this year’s event is ‘Nhanga Ngathilyurra’, a Yolngu phrase which means to ‘look ahead towards the future.

“So much has changed in the community since Garma 2019.  The Aged Care facility for which we lobbied over many years is now a reality, while Dhupuma Barker junior school in Gunyangara will celebrate its first birthday soon, and is achieving some remarkable early success,” Mrs Bowden said.

“In the spirit of the theme, we’re now ‘looking ahead’ to completing the final stages of the education pipeline – a residential secondary school and a tertiary facility.”

Yothu Yindi Foundation CEO, Denise Bowden

Tickets for this year’s event will go on sale at 10am on 19 April https://www.stickytickets.com.au/garma/events