Today marks the beginning of National Reconciliation Week, which runs 27 May to 3 June each year.
These dates commemorate two significant milestones in the Reconciliation journey - the 1967 Referendum, and the High Court decision in Mabo.
Reconciliation Week is a time for us to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to reconciliation in our workplaces, schools and communities.
Significantly, this year marks the 20th anniversary of the Bridge Walk for Reconciliation, when people came together to walk across the nation to show support for a more reconciled Australia.
This year’s theme, In This Together, is now resonating in ways which could not have been foreseen when it was announced last year. It reminds us whether we are in crisis or in reconciliation, we are all in this together.
Identified as a priority is our commitment to develop and use knowledge of Aboriginal histories and experiences, cultures and languages, and family relationships to positively impact student wellbeing and achievement; and to develop respect for and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, their histories, cultures and languages.
Critical to this is increasing the capacity of our schools to work with Aboriginal families and communities that reflect a genuine partnership and appreciation of the strengths of Aboriginal students and communities. It is important that the educational opportunities we provide match the aspirations of families and communities. The recent video release, Building on Strength in Uncertain Times, models the importance of relationships and connection, especially at this time, and highlights the resiliency of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, the oldest continuous cultures in human history.
On this journey, we are all in this together and every one of us has a role to play when it comes to reconciliation. In playing our part, we can collectively build relationships and communities that value Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, histories and cultures.
Dianella Secondary College