Australia is at a critical juncture on our journey to reconciliation.
National Reconciliation Week is held between 27 May and 3 June every year, and the theme for last week’s celebration was ‘Grounded in Truth Walk Together in Courage’ representing the relationship between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and the wider Australian community.
This relationship must be grounded in truth and the journey towards reconciliation, and requires us all to walk together with courage to become reconciled.
Proud Wiradjuri Elder and Parkes local, Robert Clegg, said: “The Aboriginal community has had a bad history. The present is alright. But the future gets better.”
Robert was born on the banks of the Bogan River and is proud of the Wiradjuri people’s history and culture.
Robert believes: “We need to teach the language. Learn the language. Keep our culture alive. Once we as Aboriginal people learn who we are, and when the Australian people learn who they are, we can have a conversation to learn where we want to be. Because in the future everyone will know where we stand, and why we stand.”
As Australia moves forward, reconciliation needs to be adopted in the minds, actions and, most importantly, the hearts of all Australians. Doing this will create a strong Nation with respectful relationships between the wider Australian community, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
By Adam Nicholson