For millennia, Aboriginal people from the Kimberley have used bush medicines to treat both physical and spiritual ailments as well as for cultural practices. Now thanks to the help from Nindilingarri Cultural Health Service, a Fitzroy Crossing aged-care home is carrying on the ancient tradition of collecting and creating medicines made from native ingredients found in the outback. Juniper Guwardi Ngadu Residential Aged Care residents have been making a range of different traditional medicines with help from Ben Storer, who runs Nindilingarri Cultural Health Service’s first aid and bush medicine program. Nindilingarri Cultural Health Service’s health promotion team has been working with Juniper for more than eight years, according to Mr Storer, who also accompanies residents from Guwardi Ngadu on their country trips to collect ingredients. “Making bush medicine with the residents has been two-way learning for me. They are always teaching me something new and then I get to go back into the community and teach the kids what the residents have taught me. It is a very rewarding process,” he said. “When we return from the bush, Guwardi Ngadu residents guide the production process. “They strip the bark and leaves, then boil up certain parts of the plants to extract their oils and goodness that goes on to make various products such as lotions, soap, teas, and bathing water.” Juniper Guwardi Ngadu residential manager Belinda Storer said for many of Guwardi Ngadu’s residents producing bush medicine brings back a rush of memories. “While our residents are making the bush medicine they reminisce on old times and continue to share stories and enjoy yarning while drinking a cup of tea. They talk about their family’s history and being back in the bush, it is nice to listen,” she said. “I enjoy seeing the happiness that this program brings the residents. Not only do they enjoy making the bush medicine, but they love Ben’s laughter and joking charm.” Guwardi Ngadu residents are now in the initial stages of building their own bush medicine garden to allow them to produce the medicine without having to trek out into the bush for ingredients.