Posted on 17/05/2018 by Phillip Island Nature Parks
Join Bass Coast’s Celebration of Reconciliation
This year during National Reconciliation Week, Bass Coast invites everyone to join in and learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and histories through a program of events.
Organisations across Bass Coast have joined forces with Traditional Custodians and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community members to present a shared program designed to commemorate, recognise and celebrate the richness and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and to help us all grow as a nation.
Sorry Day on Saturday 26 May marks the start of the event program. Everyone is invited to come together at the Nobbies Centre to share a cuppa and hear stories on this significant day. Also known as National Day of Healing, this day of reflection was one of the key recommendations of the ‘Bringing them Home’ report tabled in Parliament in May 1997.
The report was based on an inquiry by the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission into the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families.
National Reconciliation Week starts on Sunday 27 May and runs through until Sunday 3 June. This week-long celebration builds on respectful, shared relationships and reflects on two significant anniversaries in Australia’s reconciliation journey:
• The 1967 referendum where more than 90% of Australian voters chose ‘Yes’ to count Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the census and give the Australian Government the power to make laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
• The historic Mabo decision where the High Court of Australia decided that terra nullius should not have been applied to Australia. This decision recognised that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have rights to the land – rights that existed before the British arrived and can still exist today.
This year’s theme of Don’t Keep History A Mystery: Learn. Share. Grow encourages us all to learn more about the Australian story. A variety of events will be held across Bass Coast including a flag raising and Welcome with Kutcha Edwards, bush foods BBQ, Cultural Walk with Bunurong Land Council, short films and more.
This year, for the first time, events are being jointly organised and presented by Bass Coast Shire Council, Westernport Water, Phillip Island Nature Parks, Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation, Bass Coast South Gippsland Reconciliation Group and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community members.
For more information, see www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/nrw18