– Final NAIDOC Week events at the MCA
Posted on July 12, 2012 in News.
The MCA’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program Curator Keith Munro discusses tonight’s MCA NAIDOC Week events – an encore screening of Ningla A-Na (1972) and a Tent Embassy panel discussion.
NAIDOC stands for National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee, so what is NAIDOC week?
NAIDOC Week is held annually in the first full week of July. It is an opportunity for all Australians to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to recognise the important contributions made by Indigenous Australians. Events take place throughout the country with a central theme announced every year by the NAIDOC Committee that provides a focus for celebrations. Many local councils, cultural organisations, local Aboriginal NAIDOC committees and Aboriginal community organisations throughout Sydney host events for all Australians to attend. These can be found on local government and Aboriginal community organisation websites as well as the official NAIDOC website.
Who makes up the NAIDOC Committee?
The NAIDOC committee is made up of 10 members from around Australia and is co-chaired by Anne Martin and Benjamin Mitchell.
As the MCA’s ATSI Program Curator, what has your involvement been in NAIDOC week?
My involvement with NAIDOC Week 2012 has primarily been around programs taking place at the MCA although I have been able to attend some events in the city as well which has been great.
What can people expect at today’s Tent Embassy panel discussion?
An engaging and informative discussion on the significance of this event. They will also be able to comprehend the historic and symbolic act that brought about the creation of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in 1972.
I hear there is also an encore screening of Ningla A-Na at 5 pm. Could you tell us more about this film?
Ningla A-Na is a special film, a historic document that should be a compulsory part of our education system. It is the only independently made film that documents the events around the establishment of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy on the lawns of Parliament House Canberra in 1972. This film is integral in understanding the Aboriginal political struggle and should be seen by all Australians.
Where do you advise people to look for news on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture? Are there any papers or websites you can recommend?
Always always always look for news outlets that provide an Aboriginal perspective on issues that affect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The Koori Mail and National Indigenous Times are what I would recommend in the print media. They are both also available online. I would recommend Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander radio stations which are scattered across the country, as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisation websites. Focused programs with Indigenous perspectives on ABC and SBS are also informative.
The MCA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) Program is sponsored by Rio Tinto.
Posted by Kelly Stone