National Reconciliation Week begins this Saturday, 27 May, and runs until Saturday 3 June. Reconciliation week emphasises the importance of developing and maintaining respectful relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Islander peoples and other Australians.
This year, National Reconciliation Week is even more significant as it’s been 50 years since the 1967 referendum where Australians voted to give power to the Commonwealth to make laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and recognise them in the census, and 25 years since the historic Mabo decision.
In recognition of National Reconciliation Week, the Aboriginal flag will fly outside Camberwell Library. At Kew Library, we have three flag poles that fly the Australian, Aboriginal and Victorian flags throughout the year.
Numerous schools, churches, Rotary Clubs and community groups in Boroondara are actively involved in Reconciliation through practical measures to address disadvantages experienced by Aboriginal people in the areas of health, employment and education.
Council offers support and advice to these groups and encourages their ongoing commitment to Reconciliation. We have awarded more than $4,000 in grant funding from the Annual Grants 2016-17 program to local initiatives that recognised our Aboriginal heritage.
And for the past two years, Council has been working closely with the Wurundjeri people to create the Wurundjeri Trail at Chandler Park, which will be unveiled in early July during NAIDOC week. This beautiful trail will speak to the signage and history of the area through the eyes of the Wurundjeri people.
If you’d like to learn more about National Reconciliation Week or to get involved in some of the activities offered throughout the week, head to the Reconciliation Australia website.
Cr Phillip Healey