Reconciliation must live in the hearts, minds and actions of all Australians as we move forward, creating a nation strengthened by respectful relationships between the wider Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Make reconciliation part of your story and your future.
Here are some ideas for National Reconciliation Week (NRW) in your organisation:
Coordinate a Welcome to Country
NRW events provide the ideal opportunity to invite a Traditional Owner to your business or organisation to share their stories and deliver a Welcome to Country.
Conduct an Acknowledgement of Country
An Acknowledgement of Country is an opportunity for anyone to show respect for Traditional Owners and the continuing connection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to country. It can be given by both non-Indigenous people and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are connected to another place.
Display Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags
Flying the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags is a highly visible symbol of respect. This act demonstrates Australia’s recognition of its First Peoples and promotes a sense of community partnership and a commitment to reconciliation.
Participant in Local Community Events
During NRW public events are being held across the country – in schools, offices, boardrooms, community centres and local parks.
Many of these events are free, and in spirit of reconciliation, open to community members interested in building new relationships based on respect.
Have a yarn
Positive change starts with conversations which encourage the open exchange of ideas and build shared understandings. Set aside some time with your colleagues during National Reconciliation Week (NRW) to form a yarning circle and discuss the importance of reconciliation in our nation’s story, in your workplace, and in your own life.
Host a Morning Tea
Bringing your workplace community together for a morning tea demonstrates that reconciliation is an important priority and will encourage participants to stop, reflect and take notice of its place in their own lives.
Hold a TED screening
The journey towards reconciliation forms a significant part of Australia’s story, as do the stories of both trauma and triumph told by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
TED talks give us privileged access to these stories, told first hand in moving and motivating ways by diverse Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals.
Visit sites of culture significance
Visiting sites of cultural significance within your town, city or surrounding national parks can provide a different perspective on the land where you live, work or play and allow you to learn about the Traditional Owners of the area.
Working with the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community to learn about and visit sites of historical and cultural significance will also enrich relationships, understanding and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, culture, Country and place.
Promote NRW on Social Media
Social media is a great way to share your NRW experiences and to join in the national conversation about reconciliation between 27 May and 3 June. The hashtags for the NRW are #NRW2018, #DontKeepHistoryAMystery and #LearnShareGrow
Screen Indigenous films and TV programs
The stories and experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are exceptionally diverse. Films, television and documentaries depicting these rich stories are an accessible and social way to continue your learning journey around Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures.
NRW is the ideal time to gather colleagues for a viewing and share your responses and learnings.
View Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have used a variety of media to tell stories for thousands of years. Paintings, carvings, weavings, dance, song and other art forms continue to be the way to pass on stories, histories and knowledge across generations. Viewing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art or inviting Indigenous artists to share their practice is another way of deepening understanding of histories and cultures.
Attend Cultural Awareness training
Cultural awareness training supports both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and non-Indigenous people to better understand Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures, including their unique connection to the land, seas and waterways. This knowledge and understanding helps to build respectful and trusting relationships amongst the wider Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Gathering to share food
Gathering for a shared meal allows us to exchange far more than food. It also encourages us to exchange knowledge, tradition and contemporary cultural forms, as well as strengthen relationships and respect.
Using native Australian ingredients could add another dimension of learning and new taste sensations to your barbeque, picnic and dinner party.
To find out more about National Reconciliation Week (NRW) go to the Reconciliation Australia website.