Australia’s annual NAIDOC Week started yesterday across the country with both Indigenous and non-indigenous folk taking time out to celebrate this First Nations event.
NAIDOC Week celebrations are held each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The week is a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
This year’s NAIDOC theme is Voice. Treaty. Truth. Let’s Work Together. Voice,Treaty and Truth were three key elements to the reforms set out in the Uluru Statement from the Heart. These reforms represent the unified position of First Nations Australians.
NAIDOC originally stood for ‘National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee’. This committee was once responsible for organising national activities during NAIDOC Week and its acronym has since become the name of the week itself.
Locally, councils have events planned for the week. Ballina will hold a NAIDOC Walk today meeting 9.30am for 10am start at the Ballina RSL Club. The walk will travel along River Street to the Ballina Visitor Information Centre for the official ceremony. There will be refreshments, a BBQ and stalls and games will be staged in the carpark behind the Visitor Information Centre, and morning tea will be provided for community Elders in the Richmond Room.
There will be a NAIDOC sports day on Tuesday from 10am at the Seagulls Rugby League Grounds with sporting activities, traditional Indigenous games, stalls and a BBQ lunch for 4 to 14 year olds.
There will be an event on Cabbage Tree Island on Wednesday from 10.30am with special jarjum activities, Elders games, weaving and other cultural activities and service stalls.
Byron Shire Council will have a Flag Raising Ceremony at Council Chambers in Mullumbimby today at 10.30am, and there will be a NAIDOC Week Family Fun Day from 11am at the Mullumbimby and District Neighbourhood Centre in Dalley Street.
The day will feature cultural dance and music, Aboriginal art, story telling, weaving, children’s activities, bush tucker planting and tasting, delicious food and more.
In Byron Bay the Arakwal Family Cultural Day and march will start at 10am on Thursday, meeting at the Tourist Information Centre next to Railway Park for a march to Dening Park, Main Beach.
Richmond Valley is celebrating with a feast, sporting activities, music and dance, embracing the history and traditions which make the Bundjalung nation so special – today at 10am meeting outside the Casino Council Chambers for a march followed by a fun day at Colley Park Netball Courts, free BBQ and rides. And on Wednesday there will be a family event at Evans Head.
In Tweed Heads there is a cultural day today at the Minjungbal Museum from 10am and a curry night and entertainment from 5pm. Tomorrow from 9am the museum will host a Hall Of Fame induction ceremony and a morning tea. There will also be a NAIDOC street march at the Tweed Civic Centre from 10am on Friday.
Fore more in formation visit these pages from local council websites: