Behind the Jersey: Wanneroo, Southern Lions, Kalamunda and the RugbyWA Referees

Fri, Jul 5, 2024, 2:00 AM
by RugbyWA Media

The Fortescue NAIDOC Round is set to kick off this Saturday. 

Clubs are set to don special playing jerseys this weekend in celebration and acknowledgment of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, their history and their culture. 

Here are the stories behind these jerseys: 

Wanneroo – Whadjuk and Yued Noongar Boodja 

Wanneroo’s NAIDOC Jersey was designed by Jakeob Watson. Watson is a proud Gomeroi man with deep connections to Wonnarua country, being born and raised on country. 

The artwork created by Warson constitutes the club and all they represent. The main circle in the middle, represents the club, including players, members and fans as they come together to celebrate community and rugby.  

The two digging sticks in the middle represent the name of the club - "Wanna" being the traditional Noongar word for digging stick and "Roo" meaning "the place of".  

Coming into the centre circle is all of Wanneroo’s journey lines, showing the many different roads travelled by players, members and supporters as they all come together to create the club.  

The background all green work is representative of the land and its waterways on which the club is situated. 

Lastly, the bottom left corner is the Kangaroo Paw, the logo of both the City of Wanneroo and the club, which ties in the beauty of Mother Earth and all her beautiful plant life, as well as paying respect to the club as a logo. 



Southern Lions - Beeliar Whadjuk Nyungar Boodja 

Southern Lions are set to wear a special playing jersey, created in alignment with the not-for-profit organisation, Voice of Hope. The jersey is a combination of the Southern Lions Red, White and Blue stripes together with the Voice of Hope organisation logo. 

With Voice of Hope, Southern Lions hosted a Jersey reveal and presentation on Thursday night, where players were told about the story behind the creation of Voice of Hope, as well as the jersey they are set to don on Saturday. 

From Walbreninj Yorga (Healing Women): 

Voice of Hope is dedicated to empowering Aboriginal women, particularly those who are currently incarcerated or have been formerly incarcerated, by fostering a strong sense of community, cultural connection, and healing. Our mission is to support these women in their journey of transition back into the community, helping them reconnect with their cultural identity and recover from trauma. 

The Voice of Hope logo, designed by Buffie Creative, a Noongar Yorga from Albany, Western Australia, features the Kwooyar, or frog, which is the totem for Lorraine Pryor. This symbol embodies the essence of our journey—transformation, healing, and renewal. The design also incorporates elements representing a crown, signifying our role as matriarchs and leaders within our culture.  

Today, as the Southern Lions Rugby Union Club proudly wears this jersey, they are not just supporting our cause but also honouring the strength and resilience of Aboriginal women, especially those who have faced incarceration. 

One of these playing jerseys will be auctioned off after the Fortescue Premier Grade match, with all funds going directly to Voice of Hope. 



Kalamunda – Beeloo Whadjuk Noongar Booja 

Kalamunda’s 2024 NAIDOC jersey is inspired by the same painting produced by Kevin Bynder for 2023. 

The large circle in the middle represents the Rugby Union Club, both Male and female symbols can be seen standing around the club. These symbols not only represent the male and female players but also the parents and volunteers that make the club what it is today. 

The circles on the left represent the song lines and pathways of the club, from the early foundations, through the juniors and then the seniors. Without the foundations being set and the values, resilience and integrity of the club it wouldn’t be what it is today. 

The circles on the right represent the Aboriginal people of the Mundy tribe which is situated in Kalamunda. These are their pathways when they hunted and searched for food with young men and boys. The females of the tribe would search for fruit and berries as well as medicines. 

The symbols surrounding these pathways are the footprints of the elders. Both from the club as well as the Aboriginal people. These Elders are full of wisdom and knowledge and look after the younger generation. 

The design was created by Kevin Bynder, who comes from the Whadjuk-Yuet Noongar (maternal) and Widi Badimia Yamatji (paternal) tribes. 

The story behind Kalamunda Rugby Clubs 2023 NAIDOC Round Jersey.

RugbyWA Referees – Whadjuk Noongar Boodja 

RugbyWA’s referees will also be wearing their 2024 NAIDOC jersey design for the round. Designed by Carlleen Dingo, the jersey aims to ensure the traditional heritage of the owners of the land, and to display the referees ongoing commitment to this acknowledgement. 

The footprints in grey are the ashes of the footsteps of the ancestors and highlight the importance of the Aboriginal Elders and knowledge holders and their responsibility to pass culture on down through the generations. 

The amber colour represents the colours of the land where Aboriginal people come from – they come from the fire. 

The other colours represent the connections to the waterways and the sea, in addition to recognising Torres Strait Islanders. 

The white lines and circles are the connections between families – children come from different families and groups, but all are interconnected and learn from each other. 


RugbyWA would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we operate. RugbyWA is located on Noongar land, and has affiliated clubs across Whadjuk, Pinjarup, Wardandi, Bibbulman, Minang, Kaniyang, Wugjari, Amangu and Wangkathaa lands. RugbyWA pays our respects to Elders Past, Present and Future, and stand with all Indigenous Australians on the journey towards reconciliation. 

To access resources for First Nations Australians, or for clubs wishing to support First Nations Australians, please visit RugbyWA's First Nations Resources page.