Whelp Launch

(5.50pm, 107 Projects, 107 Redfern Street)

Thank you, Cath, [Keenan, MC] and hello, everyone. Welcome to the launch of this fabulous book and exhibition.

I'd also like to acknowledge Benjamin Law, who's written the book's foreword, and Philip Quast who's going to perform a song written by one of you. And of course, I acknowledge all of you who been at the Story Factory classes over the last year, and who've been inspired to produce such amazing work. Well done to all of you.

Some great things have happened in Redfern during the past 10 years. The Council put a lot of work into improving the local environment - taking down the ugly overhead wires, paving the footpaths, planting trees and restoring Redfern Park.

We bought this building to provide space for young artists, and most importantly the Story Factory opened in its very cool premise - the Martian Embassy.

Last year, over 220 students from four local schools interviewed community leaders, local residents and business owners to tell some of the many, many stories of Redfern, Chippendale, Waterloo and Darlington areas.

This year, you've used your imaginations and creativity to produce the stories, poems, and songs collecting in this book, and on the walls here tonight.

You've opened a window onto your world for everyone who looks into this book and shown us what tremendous talent springs up from this community.

It's a great pleasure to be at this launch with you and to thank everyone at the Sydney Story Factory for the tremendous work that they do, and to thank each and every contributor to Whelp for showing us all what you can do.

Congratulations to all of you.