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NAIDOC Week family fun day brings culture together


Achievements: The Waka Waka dance group from Cherbourg performed at the NAIDOC Family Fun Day at Brisbane’s Musgrave Park. Photos: Mark Bowling

THOUSANDS across south-east Queensland turned out to take part in the NAIDOC Week family fun day at Brisbane’s Musgrave Park on July 8.

“It’s bringing all the culture into one spot and showing our achievements,” David Miller, a team member with the Archdiocese of Brisbane’s Murri Ministry, said.

Featuring song, traditional dance, and art and crafts, the event is one of the biggest annual celebrations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.

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.

Mr Miller, who is frequently called on to deliver Welcome to Country speeches, said he was pleased Pope Francis chose respect for the world’s indigenous peoples as the theme for the Pope’s universal prayer intention for July.

 “I want to be a spokesman for the deepest longings of indigenous peoples. And I want you to add your voice to mine in a heartfelt prayer that all will respect indigenous peoples, threatened in their identity and even in their existence.”

Mr Miller said respect for the long history and culture of indigenous Australians was important for indigenous people themselves, and should be for all Australians.

“Respect is one of the main things for me. You see it in our elders to our youngest children,” he said.

“Respect for the land, respect for the skies, respect for waters and respect for people.”

The theme of this year’s NAIDOC Week was Songlines: the living narrative of our nation.

By Mark Bowling

Catholic Church Insurance

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