Dora Deemal

Dora is a significant elder of the Binthi clan (one of 32 clan lands of the Guugu Yimithirr tribal nations) and lives in Hopevale in Cape York QLD. Her family totems are Gaalaya (centipede) and Wandarr (white cockatoo). Dora’s mum’s family were from Stonehenge (near Winton QLD). After Dora’s Grandmother was bitten by a death adder, Dora’s mum and her siblings were taken to away to Cape Bedford mission.

During WWII the German Lutheran missionary at Cape Bedford was taken as a prisoner of war, suspected of operating as a spy. Aboriginal people living at the mission were suspected of transmitting smoke signals to Japanese planes and were forcibly relocated to government camp Woorabinda in South West QLD. They were kept there in camps for eight years. Dora was born at Woorabinda and returned to the newly established HopeVale Mission when she was five.

Dora started working at HopeVale Arts and Cultural Centre after she retired from working at the Aged Care centre, to keep her mind busy and work with the other ladies. She has 6 children, 18 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren

Dora is a significant elder of the Binthi clan (one of 32 clan lands of the Guugu Yimithirr tribal nations) and lives in Hopevale in Cape York QLD.”

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