Link Housing’s NAIDOC Week event, held on Tuesday 10 November 2020, celebrated Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and reflected on the theme, ‘Always Was, Always Will Be’.
We were grateful to be able to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture together with some of our residents, staff and special guests at a COVID-Safe, in-person event at our Arts and Cultural Hub in Ryde. And follow this with a virtual event via Facebook Live.
Link Housing’s Billie-Jo Williams was the Master of Ceremonies and was joined by special guests, including Craig Madden from Metro Local Aboriginal Land Council, Uncle Terry Olson and Gomeroi.
An amazing NAIDOC cake and traditional morning tea from Kallico Catering and Custom Cakes was shared with attendees of the in-person event.
You can watch the entire event below, which includes a traditional Aboriginal dance and Didgeridoo session.
At the event, we were also proud to launch of our “Reflect” Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) with internationally renowned Aboriginal artist Bibi Barba.
We started our RAP journey two years ago, and it has been a special journey for all of us, especially our RAP Working Group who led its creation.
We have been fortunate to have the support of Bibi Barba on our journey, and were pleased to commission her to create an original Aboriginal artwork that now features in our Reflect RAP document and hangs proudly in our West Ryde Office.
The artwork is designed as three parts. The middle piece is an original painted by Bibi which symbolises unity and community through Indigenous culture and colour. The two outside parts were designed by Bibi and painted by Link Housing staff and residents during a series of art and culture workshops led by Bibi during NAIDOC Week 2019.
Bibi was recently interviewed on radio and on Ticker TV about her collaboration with Link Housing, our RAP and her current art exhibition showing at Milsons Point. Watch the Ticker TV interview from 19 minutes.
Our Reflect RAP is an important step forward in our RAP journey that will provide a framework to support the national reconciliation movement and allow us increase awareness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, histories, knowledge and rights in our sphere of influence.
At our NAIDOC Week 2020 event, CEO Andrew McAnulty spoke about the importance of the RAP to Link Housing, and what the document symbolises to us as an organisation. He talked about how we have a lot to learn from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who have occupied and cared for this country for over 65,000 years and are spiritually and culturally connected to the lands.
Watch a video which captures our RAP journey to date:
Watch our NAIDOC Week 2020 event video: