Uncle Phil, aka The First Cook, is a respected Torres Strait Islander Elder in the community. He is an inspiring communicator and cultural teacher who uses cooking as a two-way learning experience teaching spirituality, language, dance and storytelling from the Torres Strait Islands in a fun filled and interactive way for any age groups and different cultural backgrounds.

His father is from Badu Island on the Western side of the Torres Strait and his clan totem is Cordell (crocodile). His mother is from Erub (Darnly Island) on the Eastern side of the Torres Strait and her clan totem is Waru (sea turtle). During WW2 his mother and father along with many other Torres Strait Islander were forced to leave their island home and were relocated on the mainland of Australia. Uncle Phil grew up in Mackay and is one of the first generation of Torres Strait Islander born on the mainland. He loves his cultural heritage and taking part in the traditional preparation and hunting of food that has provided a healthy diet for his people for many thousands of years.

He developed a cultural affirmation and exchange program that teaches Torres Strait Islander culture, food preparation, nutritional value of food and healthy lifestyle choices in a fun filled and interactive way for any age groups and different cultural backgrounds.

Uncle Phil teaches Torres Strait Islander culture at kindergartens, schools and festivals and works with childcare agencies, community organisations, not-for-profit organisations, councils, etc.

Uncle Phil hosted Kup Murri feasts at NAIDOC Day, Sorry Day, Mabo Day, Survival Day, Reconciliation Week, Harmony Day, Aboriginal Men Camps, Aboriginal Family and Community Gatherings, Primary Schools, Dance Festivals including Yemaya Festival, Rainbow Serpent Festival, Fest La Frog, Maitreya Festival, Peats Ridge Festival, and many other community events.

Uncle Phil holds Certificate IV Education and Training and Diploma Aboriginal Community Development.

Link to article ‘Uncle Phil sees feasting as cultural education’ in The Local (p7): http://issuu.com/dhslocal/docs/the_local_issue_45_may_11__2015

Link to article ‘A place where we can learn about each other’ in the Western Advocate: http://www.westernadvocate.com.au/story/3068259/a-place-where-we-can-learn-about-each-other/
Link to Kornar Winmil Yunti | Indigenous male and well being services | Film “Men Speak”: http://kornarwinmilyunti.org.au/

Link to NITV ‘Living Strong’ series, Episode 15: http://www.nitv.org.au/fx-story.cfm?sid=B80E89E4-C322-E94D-6A242CD042C6D0AD

Link to Vimeo ‘A Kup Murri in Centennial Park Sydney’: http://vimeo.com/47690009

Link to ABC Open ‘What’s your story?’: https://open.abc.net.au/openregions/vic-central-51bX8hh/posts/torres-strait-islanders-49fg4ub

Link to Moonee Valley Weekly Review: http://www.theweeklyreviewmooneevalley.com.au/story/1608683/strait-talking-uncle-shows-traditional-way-to-belong/news

Link to 2013 Deadlys Finalists for Outstanding Achievement in Cultural Development. Please vote for Uncle Phil by 18th August 2013: http://www.deadlys.com.au/vote/

Link to 2012 NAIDOC celebrations in Sydney: http://blog.centennialparklands.com.au/kup-murri-centennial-park-part-naidoc-celebrations/

Link to 2012 Deadlys Finalists for Outstanding Achievement in Cultural Development: http://www.vibe.com.au/newsite/news/outstanding-achievement-in-cultural-advancement

Link to Creative Ministry Network of the Uniting Church 2008/9: http://www.cmn.unitingcare.org.au/pdf/AnnualReport09.pdf

Link to YouTube clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kx_vk4n2YRk&noredirect=1