Albany sewers craft echidnas to launch children’s book on impacts of family and domestic violence

Sarah MakseAlbany Advertiser
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Simone McGurk reads Peta’s Yarn.
Camera IconSimone McGurk reads Peta’s Yarn. Credit: WA Department of Communities

An Albany sewing circle led by Menang elder Eliza Woods has hand-stitched 100 echidna puggle toys to launch a new storybook exploring the impact of family and domestic violence on children.

Peta’s Yarn, released on Tuesday, is a children’s book telling the story of Peta the puggle and Sam the cockatoo to help children who have experienced trauma to process their emotions.

Albany sewing group NanaLinks provided a handmade plush toy to be distributed with each book as part of the Story Animals program.

Story Animals uses toys as a therapy tool for children in protection to deal with trauma.

Puggle toys handmade by the NanaLinks sewing circle.
Camera IconPuggle toys handmade by the NanaLinks sewing circle. Credit: Supplied

Co-author and Department of Communities child protection expert Verity Roennfeldt said the book included tools to help children explore their experiences and tell their own stories.

“By creating the story animals, and making them the heroes of relatable stories, children in out-of-home care are reminded that they are not alone and are very much loved for and cared for,” she said.

As part of the 16 Days in WA campaign to end violence against women, books will be distributed across WA including refuges, residential care facilities and child protection.

Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk said the handcrafted story animals made by Albany volunteers were “a symbol of hope and love”.

“We are very grateful for the work of the NanaLinks women, who deserve great respect for helping to promote opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children to maintain and develop a deep, connected sense of self and culture,” she said.

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