Coast Shelter staff joined with clients, community members and representatives of other organisations in a walk from their Mann St office to Leagues Club Park on the Gosford waterfront on June 1, in recognition of National Reconciliation Week (May 27-June 7).
They were joined by dancers from The Glen who performed an inspiring First Nations dance and Mark, a young man engaged with a Coast Shelter service, who played the didgeridoo and welcomed people in his people’s language.
Coast Shelter CEO, Michael Starr, said the theme for National Reconciliation Week this year was More than a word.
“Reconciliation takes action,” Starr said.
“At Coast Shelter we realise our journey and action towards reconciliation starts with meeting, learning from and listening to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in our organisation and from the wider Central Coast community.
“Only then can we make reconciliation part of our services, workplace culture and decision making.”
Senior Case Worker and member of Coast Shelter’s Reconciliation Action Plan Committee, Amy-Rae Eyles, said the journey towards reconciliation was an important one.
“We all come to work each day to make our community a better place, a place where all people are offered the same and equal opportunities,” she said.
“It is a journey toward a reconciled Australia, but it is amazing to see and be a part of our journey at Coast Shelter.”
The Shelter’s Reconciliation Action Plan Committee has developed a Reconciliation Action Plan for current and ongoing collaboration with First Nations People and the Central Coast Community.
The dates of Reconciliation Week are significant, with May 27 commemorating the referendum which allowed the Australian Government power to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the Census, and June 7 marking the Mabo decision, which led to the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of lands (Reconciliation Australia).
Media release, Jun 4