Kaurna Warra Pintyanthi
You are here: 

Organisations with Kaurna Names within the Adelaide City Precincts

Tandanya audio (National Aboriginal Cultural Institute)

(established in 1989, along with Tandanya Café)

Tandanya audio takes its name from the original name for Adelaide, south of Karrawirra Parri audio (the Torrens).  Tandanya audio derives from tarnta audio ‘red kangaroo’ + kanya audio ‘rock’.


Warra Yellakka audio (newsletter)

Tandanya publishes a newsletter Warra Yellaka audio ‘language today’ (warra ‘voice; language’ + yalaka ‘now’). The newsletter has been published since at least 1994.


Adelaide University

Wiltu Yarlu audio (Aboriginal Programs, University of Adelaide)

Wiltu Yarlu was named after Auntie Gladys Elphick’s totem, the wiltu yarlu ‘sea eagle’. The name Wilto Yerlo was officially instituted in 1995 and subsequently updated to reflect the Revised Spelling system.

Mattanya Housing Association Inc.

Mattanya audio, established in August 1996, provides accommodation in Finniss St. North Adelaide for Indigenous students. Mathanya is the Kaurna word for ‘owner’.

Yaitya Purruna Indigenous Health Unit.

Unit established within Dept of General Practice in 2001. Named Yaitya Purruna audio (lit. ‘Indigenous alive’) in 2002.

Adelaide Campus Children’s Centre

In 2004 the following names were adopted:

Kuula audio ‘koala’ for the Nursery section located in the Observatory building

Pilta [RS Pirlta] audio  ‘brushtail possum’ for the Toddler section located in the Observatory building

Tarnda [RS Tarnta] audio ‘red kangaroo (male)’ for the Kindy section located in the Johnson building on Victoria drive opposite Karrawirra Parri.

Reconciliation Statement

(at https://www.adelaide.edu.au/reconciliation/)

The Adelaide University Reconciliation Statement was adopted on 8th July 2003 and renewed on 28th April 2014. It contains the following acknowledgement in Kaurna with English translation:

Ngadlu, yaitya miyurna wama Tarntanyanangkurlu, University of Adelaideku pudlurri-api tampinthi. Ithu warrarlu, yaintya piipangka, wakinha yaitya miyurna-itya, tampinthi. Universitidlu yaitya miyurna pudlurri-apinthi, wakinha muinmurnituwayi, marnirni-apititya, warpulayinthi nguyanguya murititya. audio

A fairly close literal translation of the Kaurna text is as follows:

‘We, the Indigenous people of the Adelaide Plains acknowledge the University of Adelaide’s statement. These words on this page recognise injustice (bad/evil) for Indigenous people. The University is making a statement to Indigenous people so as to not allow injustice (bad/evil) to continue, in order to make things better and work towards reconciliation.’


University of South Australia

The Yungondi audio Building facing North Terrace on the City West Campus derives its name from yungkunthi ‘to give’. The engraving on the floor provides the translation ‘Give, impart, educate, communicate’, but this is a translation for warra yungkunthi (lit. ‘giving word’ or ‘giving voice’). Yungkunthi is simply the verb ‘to give’. Yunggorendi, the name of the First Nations Centre for Education and Research at Flinders University, derives from the same root, but includes the reciprocal morpheme –rri. Thus yungkurrinthi means ‘to give to each other’.

Tappa Tangka Manninendi audio was conceived of as ‘pathways to excellence’, a motto adopted by the then Dean of Aboriginal and Islander Studies Colin Bourke. It is derived from tapa ‘pathway; road’ + tangka ‘liver’ + marnirninthi ‘getting better; improving’. The phrase tangka marnirninthi translates as ‘to alter the mind for the better; to get an appetite; show inclination for’. Tappa Tangka Manninendi audio is now used as the name of a medal awarded annually to the Indigenous student with the highest grade point average.

Wirringka Student Services offer support to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. The word ‘wirringka’ means ‘together, in common with’ in the Kaurna language.


Adelaide Institute of TAFE

Kurta Tirkandi audio was adopted in September 2004 as the name for the Aboriginal Education unit within the Adelaide Institute of TAFE, 120 Currie Street, Adelaide. Kurta Tirkanthi ‘learning place’.

Bureau of Meteorology

Ngayairdapira was adopted in July 2017 as the name for the BOM's new West Terrace weather station which was set up where one had originally stood from 1871-1979 before being moved to Kent Town. The naming was part of the BOM's Reconciliation Action Plan. The Kaurna word 'ngayirdapira' translates as 'concerning the sky'.


Wirranendi audio was the name chosen for the Halifax Ecocity Development (Christie Walk) by Urban Ecology Australia in October 1995. They set up the not-for-profit Wirranendi Housing Cooperative to own the land during construction and individual properties were then sold on a community title. Wirrarninthi ‘becoming bush or forest’.


The Salvation Army Warrondi audio Stabilisation Facility, 146 Gilbert Street, Adelaide, was named on 25 September 2003. Warrondi Engage & Link (WEL) is a residential program that offers support and counselling for Indigenous adults (18 years and over) experiencing homelessness due to a complex range of life domain issues including substance misuse. It derives from warrunthi ‘to call’ (cf mara warrunthi ‘to beckon’ from mara ‘hand’ + warrunthi ‘to call’).

Wiltanendi Tour

In 2001, Tauondi Cultural Agency (based at Tauondi College, Port Adelaide), established the Wiltanendi  audio Tour which visits the South Australian Museum, the Adelaide Botanical Gardens and Tandanya.   It derives from wiltarninthi ‘becoming hard; strong; obdurate; tenacious’ and was conceived of as ‘sustaining’.

Kaylene Kranz & Associates

In 2004, Kaylene Kranz & Associates, a private training organisation specialising in Community Services, Health, Counselling and Communication based in Waymouth Street, approached Kaurna Warra Pintyanthi regarding the naming of rooms in recognition of the traditional landowners. The following were adopted:

Inbari Ku audio  for the Meeting room (inparri ‘meet each other’ + kuu ‘shelter’ -> ‘room’)

Patpa Ku  audio for a lecture room south end of building (patpa ‘south’)

Kauwanda Kuaudio for a lecture room north end of building (kauwanta ‘north’)

Wongga Ku audio  for a lower ground lecture room west end of building (wangka ‘west’)

Mari Ku audio  for a lecture room east end of building (mari ‘east’)

Yerlteriburka Ku  audio  for the Managing Director’s office (yarltarripurka ‘commander’)

Inggarni Ku audio  for Reception (ingkarni ‘inquiry’ from ingkarninthi ‘to enquire’)

Trukko audio  for Administration (trruku ‘centre’)

Manku Ku audio  for the Quest Office (manku ‘help’ from mankunthi ‘to touch; take; get’)

Ngutto Ku audio  for the Education Room (ngutu ‘knowledge’ from ngutuatpanthi ‘to teach’)



Organisations bearing Kaurna names which are now defunct or have relocated outside the Adelaide City Precincts.

Patpa Warra Yunti audio (ATSIC Regional Council - disbanded 2005)

In 1994, the Kaurna and Moorundi Wards within ATSIC amalgamated. The new entity was named Patpa Warra Yunti audio. This name contains two Kaurna words, patpa ‘south’ and warra ‘throat; voice; language’ together with a Ngarrindjeri word yunti ‘together’. It was conceived of as ‘talking together in the south’.

Yaitya Makkitura audio South Australia’s Indigenous screen culture organisation which was located on the 2nd Floor, 31-33 Hindley Street, Adelaide. Yaitya Makithura ‘Indigenous mirror’.

Narna Tarkendi audio, an Australian Indigenous Performing Arts Coalition established on 23rd February 1995, was based at Tandanya and operated three or four years. From narna tarkinthi ‘the door is open’.

Wirringa audio Health Service at Adelaide University

Kumangka audio  ‘together’ is the name of a program for Indigenous youth run out of Nunkuwarrin Yunti in Wakefield Street. Nunkuwarrin Yunti bears a Ngarrindjeri name. Many people think it is a combination of Ngarrindjeri and Kaurna, but actually both words are Ngarrindjeri – nunkuwarrin ‘becoming good’ + yunti ‘together’. Kumangka has since relocated to Hindmarsh.

Kumangka audio (North Adelaide) ‘together’ was also the name given to a children’s home in the North Adelaide area.