NAIDOC (National Aborigines and Islander Day Observance Committee) Week celebrations are held across Australia each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
NAIDOC is celebrated not only in Indigenous communities, but by Australians from all walks of life. The week is a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
NAIDOC Week 2021 Theme
In 2021, NAIDOC Week falls between 4 July – 11 July 2021.
This year’s theme is: “Heal Country.” As described from the official NAIDOC website:
Country is inherent to our identity. It sustains our lives in every aspect – spiritually, physically, emotionally, socially and culturally. It is more than a place. When we talk about Country, it is spoken of like a person.
Healing Country means hearing those pleas to provide greater management, involvement, and empowerment by Indigenous peoples over country.
Healing Country means embracing First Nation’s cultural knowledge and understanding of Country as part of Australia’s national heritage. That the culture and values of Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islanders are respected equally to and the cultures and values of all Australians.Healing Country means finally resolving many of the outstanding injustices which impact on the lives of our people. To Heal Country, we must properly work towards redressing historical injustice.
Participate and support a NAIDOC Week activity
We invite you to take a look at the many events in your local area listed on the NAIDOC website: https://www.naidoc.org.au/get-involved/naidoc-week-events
If you are also planning or have planned a NAIDOC Week activity, please do share it widely.
WA Technology supporting Heal Country
This year’s INCITE Awards’ finalists include two innovative projects that focus on some of the principles of this year’s NAIDOC Week’s theme of Heal Country.
MissionsConnect by the School of Design at Curtin University, is the first immersive technological tool of its kind in Australia that will aid in education, truth-telling and reconciliation. It presents the lived experiences of Stolen Generations Survivors during their time in-care at church/state-run missions and narrates their stories within a virtual reality reconstruction of these places.
The future possibility of MissionsConnect is a digital fireplace where a Cree elder from Canada, a Minang elder from Australia and an Oneida elder from the USA can come together and share the Truth with the global community.
MissionsConnect is a finalist for this year’s Social Impact Awards Category.
For more information on MissionsConnect: http://missionsconnect.net/
AirborneIT – VR World Gallery
Through partnerships with WA’s leading IT organisations and Government agencies, AirborneIT’s innovative AeroIT service aims to close the gap in access to technology and increasing equality in service between metro and remote communities.
One way they are doing this is via the use of Virtual Reality to engage Indigenous students in regional and remote communities, and showcasing their culture beyond the walls of their classroom.
AirborneIT has been working with Marble Bar Primary School students, who worked with Indigenous community leaders to create paintings on canvas depicting seasons and wildlife elements according to local Aboriginal culture and history. They then turned the 2D artwork into 3D and Virtual Reality format using Tilt Brush by Google.
The Marble Bar Primary School community have now taken this innovation to a new level, by building a Virtual Reality Art Gallery on AltspaceVR – a well known, premier online place to view and attend events in 3D.
The Marble Bar VR World Gallery will allow anyone from anywhere in the world to jump on their computers and mobile devices, and virtually walk through a gallery space the school has designed to view the students’ Indigenous artwork.
More information: https://airborneit.com.au