The Government is supporting celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Referendum with $2.5 million in grants for local councils.
Every local council is eligible for a one-off $5,000 grant to partner with a local Indigenous organisation for celebrations marking these anniversaries during National Reconciliation Week (27 May – 3 June 2017).
The funding is an opportunity for local councils to work in partnership with a local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community organisation.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, said that the 1967 referendum was one of the most significant events in our nation’s history.
“The 1967 Referendum recognised First Australians in the Census and gave the Commonwealth a Constitutional role in relation to their fellow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians and achieved a 90.77 per cent ‘yes’ vote which remains unprecedented in Australia,” Minister Scullion said.
This grant round is one part of the Commonwealth’s programme of support for the commemoration and celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1967 referendum and the Government is working with Indigenous stakeholders and other organisations to mark this event.
National Reconciliation Week also ends with the 25th anniversary of the Mabo decision – which created a new foundation for land law in Australia.
“The Mabo High Court case was a landmark moment in the history of Indigenous land rights, overturning the doctrine of ‘terra nullius’,” Minister Scullion said.
“The grants for local councils will also support the celebration and recognition of the efforts of Eddie Mabo and all other native title campaigners across Australia.
“These events form part of the national story of our country’s amazing cultural, social and economic progress.
“I want all Australians to mark the significance of these two occasions in a manner befitting their importance to the nation and to support these events we are providing $5,000 grants to local councils.”
Activities that honour and respect both anniversaries and their significance to all Australians could include community BBQs, flag raising ceremonies or cultural showcases. The funding round commenced on Thursday, 6 April and will remain open until Friday, 21 April.
Further information is available on the website of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet at www.dpmc.gov.au