A celebration of Aboriginal and Torres strait Islander People, their history, culture and achievements.
We had a wonderful week. At the opening service Hubert was asked to come up and share his thoughts. This was a great opportunity to talk about how God cares for and loves us.
The Friday was a great and vibrant day! We had a children’s art and craft table set up which was a great hit. The kids loved it. The balloons, the shiny foam shapes, and the colour in wooden bear were all favorites (I think my favorite was the bear too!) I remember in particular one little boy of around 3 who was not sure how to use the textas. When he realised he could, his face lit up, and he was so excited with the marks he had made on the wooden bear. It was beautiful.
The dancing was unique and I have never seen anything like it. I liked the Hula girls and the way they dance is something I definitely cannot do! The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have such a beautiful culture; everyone should really learn more about it.
We also made a pot (VERY LARGE) of pumpkin soup. Something about pumpkin soup here on Palm everyone loves. This is strange as it is so warm but for the locals anything below 24 degrees is freezing cold!
NAIDOC for us was a great time of learning and interaction. We are really enjoying getting to know the people and their history. Let’s make it a national holiday!
A Little bit about NAIDOC Week thanks to naidoc.org.au
“National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee) Week is an Australian observance lasting from the first Sunday in July until the following Sunday. NAIDOC Week celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.” (1)
It is a week which originally started as a protest against the treatment of indigenous Australians and was a protest against Australia Day. It was called the ‘Day of Mourning’.
One of the first major civil rights gatherings in the world was on Australia Day 1938. The protesters marched through the streets of Sydney, which was then followed by congress attended by over one thousand people.
It was known as the Day of Mourning.
After the congress there was increased desire for the ‘Day of Mourning’ to be a regular annual event.
1940 – 1955
From 1940 until 1955, the Day of Mourning was held annually on the Sunday before Australia Day and was known as Aborigines Day. In 1955 Aborigines Day was shifted to the first Sunday in July after it was decided the day should become not simply a protest day but also a celebration of Aboriginal culture.
1956 – 1990
Major Aboriginal organisations, state and federal governments, and a number of church groups all supported the formation of, the National Aborigines Day Observance Committee (NADOC). At the same time, the second Sunday in July became a day of remembrance for Aboriginal people and their heritage.
In 1972, the Department of Aboriginal Affairs was formed, as a major outcome of the 1967 referendum.
In 1974, the NADOC committee was composed entirely of Aboriginal members for the first time. The following year, it was decided that the event should cover a week, from the first to second Sunday in July.
In 1984, NADOC asked that National Aborigines Day be made a national public holiday, to help celebrate and recognise the rich cultural history that makes Australia unique. While this has not happened, other groups have echoed the call.
1991 – Present
With a growing awareness of the distinct cultural histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, NADOC was expanded to recognise Torres Strait Islander people and culture. The committee then became known as the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC). This new name has become the title for the whole week, not just the day. Each year, a theme is chosen to reflect the important issues and events for NAIDOC Week.
During the mid-1990s, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) took over the management of NAIDOC until ATSIC was disbanded in 2004-05.
There were interim arrangements in 2005. Since then a National NAIDOC Committee, until recently chaired by former Senator Aden Ridgeway, has made key decisions on national celebrations each year. The National NAIDOC Committee has representatives from most Australian states and territories.