Wednesday 26 March is National Sorry Day, a day of remembrance and commemoration held to highlight the impact of past policies of forcible removal on the Stolen Generations, their families, and their communities. The first National Sorry Day was held on 26 May 1998, one year after the ‘Bringing Them Home’ report was tabled in Parliament. The ‘Bringing Them Home’ is the final report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families and was conducted by the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (now called the Australian Human Rights Commission) between 1995 and 1997.
National Sorry Day is of particular significance to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Australia. The day is an opportunity for all Australians to remember past mistakes and build stronger bridges for a richer, stronger future together. Mt St Michael’s has been invited to attend the National Sorry Day Ceremony at Teralba Park, Everton Park and will be represented by the Student Leadership Team and members of the Student Executive of our CAN groups.
In the coming weeks we join in celebrating and commemorating some other very significant dates:
- 26 May 4th Anniversary of the Uluru Statement from the Heart
- 27 May 1967 Referendum
- 27 May - 3 June National Reconciliation Week (NRW)
- 3 June Mabo Day.
National Reconciliation Week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia. Reconciliation Australia’s theme for 2021, ‘More than a word. Reconciliation takes action’, urges the reconciliation movement towards braver and more impactful action.
Reconciliation is a journey for all Australians – as individuals, families, communities, organisations and importantly as a nation. At the heart of this journey are relationships between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Reconciliation must live in the hearts, minds and actions of all Australians as we move forward, creating a nation strengthened by respectful relationships between the wider Australian community, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
I invite you during the coming weeks to spend a moment reflecting on our own individual roles in supporting reconciliation at our newly created “Peace and Reconciliation Garden” located at the entrance of the College near Grantuly.