Community invited to get hands-on for National Reconciliation Week

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Sunraysia residents will join hundreds of thousands of people across Australia in marking National Reconciliation Week this week.

National Reconciliation Week runs from 27 May until 3 June and is bookended by two significant events in our country’s reconciliation journey – the anniversary of the successful 1967 referendum (27 May) and the historic Mabo decision in 1992 (3 June).

Council will hold a special event in the Langtree Mall on the eve of National Reconciliation Week tomorrow Wednesday 26 May, which is National Sorry Day.

Four pre-drawn murals will be created on large panels, produced by Yapa Wiimbia – which is the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander name for a group of Council staff who serve as the organisation’s peer support team. The name is a combination of two different Aboriginal languages representative of these staff.

These murals will mark the dates and anniversaries of the three culturally significant days that fall on or near National Reconciliation Week – National Sorry Day, the 1967 referendum and the historic Mabo decision.

A fourth mural will recognise the 2021 National Reconciliation Week theme More than a word. Reconciliation takes action.

The Sunraysia community and Council staff will be invited to help paint and complete the murals between 9am and 3pm tomorrow in the middle of the Langtree Mall, under the main shaded area.

Aboriginal Action Committee members and Aboriginal Elders will also participate and be on hand to share their knowledge of the meaning behind the murals and Reconciliation Week, and speak with local residents.

Councillor for Community Development and Gender Equality Helen Healy said the event would be a milestone Reconciliation Action Project, having Council staff, the Aboriginal Action Committee and the Sunraysia community working together on a public display of solidarity.

Cr Healy highlighted the importance of this year’s theme for National Reconciliation Week – More than a word. Reconciliation takes action.

“This year’s theme is very appropriate, urging braver and more impactful action to achieve Reconciliation,” she said.

“It’s now almost three decades since Australia formally started the Reconciliation process, aimed at creating unity and respect between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and non-Indigenous Australians.

“We’ve made progress towards this over the past 30 years, but after three decades we still have a long way to go to achieve Reconciliation, and while events such as this are a great way to help progress this, let’s all endeavour to make every week Reconciliation Week.”

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