NAIDOC week 2015: We all stand on Sacred Ground: Learn, Respect and Celebrate

NAIDOC Week logo

The Botany Bay City Council celebrated NAIDOC Week 2015 with events including a Bush Tucker Walk and a Flag Raising Ceremony.

On Thursday 9 July, Terry Lennis guided a group around Garnet Jackson Reserve, where participants found out about Aboriginal culture and education, as well as the various types of bush tucker available in our own backyards.

Terry Lennis by Clarrie Jones
Image: Terry Lennis by Clarrie Jones

Terry Lennis by Clarrie Jones
Image: Terry Lennis by Clarrie Jones

Warren Roberts 

Botany Bay City Council Community Worker—Aboriginal Services, Warren Roberts, said the walk was an eye opener to understanding how there is bush tucker all around us without us knowing it.’ He added: ‘It was a great experience understanding that planting native plants not only gives back through Bush Tucker but it also brings back native wildlife too. That way, everyone wins. The taste testing at the end was pretty good too!

Participants were enthusiastic about the event saying:

‘Terry was very warm, personable, engaging and incredibly knowledgeable. Very enjoyable; loved the pancakes and jam! 

‘Brilliant. Why didn’t I learn this as a kid?

‘Loved the event. I know more about bush tucker and horticulture than I did before and believe there should be more events like this in the future.

The Flag Raising Ceremony took place on the morning of Friday 10 July at George Hanna Memorial Museum and Mascot Library. Councillor George Glinatsis acknowledged the traditional owners of the land on which we were meeting, the Bidegal and Gadigal people, and said: The City of Botany Bay is proud of our Aboriginal heritage. …The history of Australia did not begin in 1788 and I deeply regret it has taken Australia so long to recognise this. …Today is about the future—a future in which we, as Council, explore how we can better recognise the First Australians in the work that we do.

NAIDOC Week Flag Raising ceremony at George Hanna Memorial Museum and Mascot Library
Image: Flag Raising Ceremony. City of Botany Bay

This years NAIDOC Week theme highlights Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ strong spiritual and cultural connection to land and sea. The theme is an opportunity to pay respects to country; honour those who work tirelessly on preserving land, sea and culture and to share the stories of many sites of significance or sacred places with the nation.

The 2015 theme also specifically highlights and celebrates the anniversary of the ‘Handback’ of Uluru, one of these sacred sites, to its traditional owners on 26 October 30 years ago.

Paula Grunseit 
 Librarian: Local History/Community Engagement

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