Alone on the soaks

As a child I had no mother's arms to hold me. No father to lead me into the world. Us taken-away kids only had each other. All of us damaged and too young to know what to do. We had strangers standing over us…Many of us grew up hard and tough. Others were explosive and angry. A lot grew up just struggling to cope at all. They found their peace in other institutions or alcohol. Most of us learnt how to occupy a small space and avoid anything that looked like trouble. We had few ideas about relationships. No one showed us how to be lovers or parents. How to feel safe loving someone when that risked them being taken away and leaving us alone again.

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Alec Kruger was stolen as a child from his family and his country. From this early time he knew the cold and harsh reality of institutions and not the caressing love of his mother or the warmth of other close relations. Still young, he was taken again – to the cattle stations of Central Australia where, even as a boy, he was expected to display all the independence and ingenuity of someone much older.

In isolation. Alec faced possible death, till the arrival of Old People from country who saved him, taught him and made him culturally strong.

Alec Kruger spent years droving and roaming throughout the Territory and Queensland, forever seeking his place in the world. He found a sense of belonging and somewhere to call home through having his own family and with the emergence and leadership of groups such as the Central Australian Stolen Generations and Families Aboriginal Corporation in the struggle of recognition, reconciliation and recompense.

Alone on the Soaks enhances our understanding of the diverse journeys of Australia’s stolen generations by offering readers intimate stories told in an original and valuable voice.

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