Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion has welcomed the 2018 NAIDOC Week theme, Because of her, we can!, announced today by the National NAIDOC Committee.
“I am thrilled that 2018 NAIDOC celebrations will be guided by this theme. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls are strong role models, leaders in their fields and communities, and critical to positive generational change,” said Minister Scullion.
The Coalition Government is committed to supporting the needs, aspirations and successes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls.
“The Government has commissioned Ms June Oscar AO, Australia’s first female Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commissioner to explore issues affecting the safety and success of First Australian women.
Ms Oscar AO will lead national consultations over 2018 with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander girls and women to discuss their aspirations, as well as cultural, socio-economic and personal security. Findings will inform the development of policies and programs to support the safety and empowerment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls.
“We’re committed to supporting the education and economic development of Indigenous women – who we know are leaders of change in their communities.
“I wish to recognise the Building Better Lives for Ourselves project as a stellar example of the powerful impact on communities that can be achieved when Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls are empowered.
Since 2015, this project has brought together First Australian women to address the effects of intergenerational trauma and violence. It has had a transformative impact on the lives of women who have participated, and their families and communities.
“Under the Indigenous Advancement Strategy, the Government supports a range of programs dedicated to increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander girls and young women’s participation in education.
“Since 2014, the Government has invested around $67 million, supporting over 11,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young women and girls to improve their school attendance, engage with school, participate in mentoring programs and to go on to university.
“This includes the establishment of a $15 million science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) academy for Indigenous girls.
“In addition, we are developing the first ever Indigenous Business Sector Strategy – which has a strong focus on practical support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women entrepreneurs.
“I look forward to NAIDOC 2018 celebrations to honour the invaluable contributions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls, past and present.”