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Walking for Reconciliation

Published: July 03, 2023 9:11am

National Reconciliation Week, from 27 May to 3 June, is a time for all Australians to reflect and learn about our shared history, cultures and achievements.

This year’s theme ‘Be a Voice for Generations’ focused on recognising the work of previous generations who fought for justice in Australia. It also calls upon all Australians to take both individual and collective steps towards reconciliation for the generations to come.

PCYC celebrated National Reconciliation Week (NRW) across our Centres in diverse ways. At Midland PCYC, Stepping Stones students spent a morning learning about reconciliation and discussing what it means to them in everyday practice. At Kensington PCYC, Out of Hours School Care children participated in reconciliation-themed activities involving learning about National Sorry Day and creating puzzles featuring pictures representing reconciliation. Team members from Bunbury and Geraldton PCYC came together with their local community to participate in their town’s walk for reconciliation.

Geraldton PCYC Centre Manager, Talya Quinn, is part of the Justice and Community network which helped organise the community walk for NRW event in Geraldton. Despite the rainy weather, over 200 people joined the walk for reconciliation. PCYC staff members and participants along with local businesses, not-for-profit organisations, schools, politicians and community leaders to come together in solidarity for NRW celebrations.

It was also a proud moment for Geraldton PCYC’s youngest team member, Samarra Martin, who led a workshop on reconciliation for the girls in the safeSISTAS program. Samarra is a 22-year-old Nhanda woman who loved sharing her culture and knowledge with the teenage girls. Read more about Samarra’s story here.

To cap off Reconciliation Week, the Department of Communities WA Youth Engagement Grants program announced $10,000 funding for Collie PCYC’s Wilmen Boodja-k Kaadadjiny Project.

Through this project, PCYC will support Aboriginal Elders and community members to pass down knowledge, cultural practices and stories to local Aboriginal young people. This includes song lines, dance, language, art, bush tucker and bush medicines. With permission from Elders, PCYC will also facilitate on-country excursions for young people as part of the program. This program was developed in collaboration with the local community, and Elders from the local language group, the Wilmen people, granted permission for Collie PCYC to deliver it.

The program name, ‘Wilmen Boodja-k Kaadadjiny’, has been provided by the Wilmen Custodian Elder translating to: Wilmen – the name of the clan, Boodja-k – land-on, and Kaadadjiny – thinking, listening, learning.