What is Reconciliation Week?
National Reconciliation Week takes place annually between 27th May and 3rd June and is a time for all Australians to learn about the truth of Australian history and the depth of First Nations cultures and achievements. It is a time to explore how each of us can contribute to attaining reconciliation in Australia with First Nations people and communities. The National Reconciliation Week theme for 2021 was ‘More than a word. Reconciliation takes action’. This theme encouraged all Australians to take action to achieve equality between First Nations and non-First Nations people.
National Sorry Day
Observed annually, National Sorry Day remembers and acknowledges the mistreatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people forcibly removed from their families and communities, who we now know as ‘The Stolen Generations’.
As part of our Out and About Program at Carlton Learning Precinct, children and educators used the multipurpose room to watch a video of Wurundjeri Elder Colin Hunter Jr, who welcomed us to Wurundjeri country and shared the significance of the Mana Gum leaves. We explored the beautiful grounds of Carlton Primary School for our own gum leaves which we then used to create the word ‘Wominjeka’ as a symbol of our respect for the Wurundjeri people and the connection between our classroom and the land upon which we learn.
Clare Court Acknowledgement of Country
To launch Reconciliation Week, our educators at Clare Court created a multi-lingual Acknowledgement of Country in their home languages.
Languages included Portuguese, English, Creole, Vietnamese, Hindi and Bengali.
Wear It Yellow Day
On 2nd June all staff, educators and children took part in Wear It Yellow Day to raise funds for First Nations organisation, Children’s Ground – raising a total of $1,900.
At Clare Court, children from Wombat, Emu and Koala created individual artworks to sell and raise donations for Children’s Ground. Through ongoing conversations and stories around reconciliation, the meaning of ‘sorry’ and taking action, the children have been thinking about their connections with Country, which they represented through their artworks.
Reconciliation Week at The Harbour
Wemba-Wemba Wergaia man, Dean Stewart generously shared his knowledge and experiences with our Children’s Program Team at The Harbour. We stood on the banks of the Birrarung, looking at Queens Bridge and were transported to a different time and place. Our next step is to engage with the Uluru Statement of the Heart and for the children to share age-appropriate experiences based on our new understanding.