The Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, has welcomed the start of the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week with an announcement of $1.5 million for NAIDOC activities across Australia.
NAIDOC Week provides an opportunity for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians to join together to recognise the valuable contribution Indigenous people have made to this country.
Hundreds of activities have been organised, including concerts, sporting events, family days, morning teas, barbeques, as well as traditional flag-raising ceremonies and marches.
Caboolture in Queensland will celebrate with a traditional dance and fire-lighting ceremony in their town square, Titjikala in the Northern Territory will hold a two-day festival and Victor Harbour in South Australia will hold a flag-raising ceremony.
NAIDOC Week activities celebrate the history, cultures and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
The week is celebrated not just in the Indigenous community, but also in government departments, schools, local councils and workplaces.
NAIDOC Week will be celebrated from the 6-13 July with the National Awards Ceremony on the 12 July at the NAIDOC ball in Canberra.
The Australian Government is the major sponsor of the annual NAIDOC ball, recognising the outstanding contribution that individual Indigenous Australians have made to their own communities and the broader Australian community.
I encourage all Australians to participate in this year’s NAIDOC Week activities and I congratulate the NAIDOC committee and local event organisers for their commitment to NAIDOC Week.
The Government is committed to working towards closing the 17-year life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people within a generation.
For information on NAIDOC activities in your area, contact your local Indigenous Coordination Centres on free call 1800 079 098, except Nhulunbuy (1800 089 148), Kalgoorlie (1800 193 357) and Kununurra (1800 193 348). For general information on NAIDOC, please visit NAIDOC website (www.naidoc.org.au)