Be A Voice For Generations – National Reconciliation Week 2023

‘Be A Voice For Generations’ is the theme of this year’s National Reconciliation Week, which runs from 27 May to 3 June.

It encourages all Australians to be a voice for reconciliation in tangible ways in our everyday lives – where we live, work and socialise.

Healthy North Coast has developed an Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan that sets out a framework for our organization to continue to support the national reconciliation movement. Healthy North Coast’s Reconciliation Action Plan Lead, Dunghutti man Uncle David Kelly, explains the significance of the dates 27 May and 3 June and what reconciliation means.

‘May 27 marks the anniversary of the 1967 referendum when Australians voted to remove clauses in the Australian Constitution that discriminated against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,’ Mr Kelly said.

‘It follows National Sorry Day, which was first held in Sydney in 1998 and is now commemorated nationally on 26 May to remember and honour the Stolen Generations.

‘June 3 is when the the historic 1992 Mabo decision was handed down. The High Court of Australia recognised Native Title – that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ rights over their lands did survive British colonization.’

The North Coast region is rich in traditional culture and diversity and is home to the Githabul, Bundjalung, Yaegl, Gumbaynggirr, Dunghutti and Birpai nations – see map here.

Mr Kelly said National Reconciliation Week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements.

‘It’s an opportunity for us all to reflect on the theme and explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.’ he said.

Everyone is encouraged to get involved during National Reconciliation Week. Events and activities are planned across Australia, with many listed on Reconciliation Australia’s and Reconciliation NSW’s websites. In the Tweed there will be a Community Walk on Country at Kingscliff on 4 June.