AUSTRALIAN EMBASSY CELEBRATES NAIDOC WEEK 2008
Ambassador Rod Smith explains to Undersecretary for Indigenous People Josephine Dominguez and Representative Samuel Dangwa (Lone District, Benguet) the significance of the Australian Government’s apology to the Stolen Generations during the Australian Embassy’s celebration of NAIDOC Week 2008 recently.
Ambassador Smith explained that the apology, delivered by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on 13 February 2008, signalled the Government’s commitment to strengthen relations and to close the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in areas such as life expectancy, child mortality, educational achievement and employment opportunities.
NAIDOC (National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee) Week yearly celebrates the history, culture and achievements of the Aboriginal and the Torres Strait Islander peoples.
“Apart from recognising their vital contributions to modern Australia, the occasion also provides Indigenous Australians the opportunity to promote among all Australians a sense of national pride,” said Ambassador Smith.
At the event, Jayne Williams, Australian Embassy Vice Consul and also of Indigenous heritage, provided reflections on what NAIDOC week means to her, noting that the celebration is an opportunity for families to get together and strengthen kinships and to celebrate the achievements of many Indigenous Australians. NAIDOC week also raises broader community awareness of the social issues facing Aboriginal Australia today.
As part of its NAIDOC activities, the Australian Embassy, in cooperation with the Yuchengco Museum, Asialink and the Monash University Museum of Art, will also showcase Brook Andrew: Eye to Eye on 25 July - 30 August 2008. The exhibit will feature the works of internationally celebrated Indigenous Australian artist, Brook Andrew. For more details visit www.australia.com.ph or contact 757 8135 or 889 1234.