The Australian Government has welcomed the start of NAIDOC (National Aboriginal and Islanders Day Observance Committee) Week with an announcement of $2.2 million to support more than 550 local community events across Australia.
NAIDOC Week runs from 6 to 13 July and all Australians are encouraged to participate in this year’s activities.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator Nigel Scullion, said that morning teas, community barbecues, cultural performances, traditional cooking and student activities would be among the hundreds of local events held across Australia to celebrate NAIDOC Week.
“NAIDOC Week provides an opportunity for all Australians to come together and celebrate the unique place of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia,” Minister Scullion said.
“The national theme this year is Serving Country: Centenary & Beyond.
“We honour those who have served in Australia’s military conflicts and engagements across the globe. This year’s theme honours all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men and women who have fought in defence of country.
“NAIDOC Week is a time to recognise and reflect on the role that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have played in shaping our identity and to pause and reflect on their sacrifice, and to honour their priceless contribution to our nation.
“The National NAIDOC Awards Ceremony and Ball on the Gold Coast this Friday is the national event that brings people together to acknowledge and celebrate this vital contribution across 10 award categories.”
Minister Assisting the Prime Minster for the Centenary of Anzac, Senator Michael Ronaldson, encouraged all Australians to recognise the service of Indigenous men and women in the defence of Australia.
“Indigenous men and women have a proud history of military service with our defence forces and, given the Anzac Centenary, I commend the NAIDOC Committee for ensuring that these men and women are recognised during NAIDOC Week this year,” Minister Ronaldson said.
“Earlier this year the Australian Government contributed $400,000 to the Australian National University coordinated project ‘A history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the defence of Australia’. The ANU research project will be an in-depth social history exploring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander involvement in all conflicts from the Boer War and throughout the twentieth century.”
For a full list of NAIDOC Week activities, visit www.naidoc.org.au.
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2014-07-06 Scullion-Ronaldson media release NAIDOC Week.pdf