National Reconciliation Week provides an opportunity promote reconciliation and an understanding of Indigenous culture. Maroondah celebrates Reconciliation Week through an official launch, as well as a series of events, including cultural awareness training.
This year I was invited to speak at the launch of National Reconciliation Week and the copy of speech is provided within this post:
Maroondah City Council, in the spirit of reconciliation, acknowledges that we are meeting on the land for which the Wurundjeri people have been custodians for many centuries, and on land which the Indigenous Australians have performed age old ceremonies.
We accept, respect and have shared with the Wurundjeri people in their customs of welcome.
The Wurundjeri people support the coming together of all people, respecting their individuality, to focus on a unified and cohesive nation.
Welcome to Maroondah City Council’s National Reconciliation Week Celebration here at Maroondah Federation Estate.
On behalf of Maroondah City Council I would like to welcome:
- Aunty Doreen Garvey-Wandin, Wurundjeri/Wandoon Elder
- Cr Ann Fraser
- Reg Edwards, the Indigenous musician you have had the pleasure of hearing upon your arrival here today.
- Kutcha Edwards who will be speaking and performing accompanied by Alistair McLean to close today’s proceedings
We gather here today to mark National Reconciliation Week. Commencing on the 27 May, the anniversary of the 1967 Referendum, and running until ‘Mabo Day’ the 3 June, this significant Week offers people across Australia the opportunity to focus on reconciliation, to hear about the culture and history of Australia’s Indigenous people, and to explore new and better ways of meeting challenges in our communities.
The 2011 theme for National Reconciliation Week is “Let’s Talk Recognition!”. This theme has been designed to encourage Australians ‘to join a national conversation about the value of recognition’ through events such as this.
I would like to invite the community to participate in the Indigenous cultural awareness training that will be conducted later in the week here at Maroondah Federation Estate. I encourage everyone to get involved and attend if possible, as it is a great way to learn more about Indigenous culture and to join with other members of the community to celebrate reconciliation. If you would like more information, please take a copy of the program or sign up for the session over at the the main counter. Visitors are also encouraged to view the indigenous art works from the Maroondah Council Collection that have been placed on display in the foyer.
I would also like to thank everyone here for supporting National Reconciliation Week, and in particular Maroondah Movement for Reconciliation members for their support with promoting this year’s program. I hope that today’s experience has highlighted the importance of Reconciliation within our community.
It is now my pleasure to welcome Kutcha Edwards to the stage, and to invite you to enjoy light refreshments including a range of Indigenous foods following this event.