There has been a healthy funding injection for Gunnedah’s National Aboriginal Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week celebration.
On Wednesday evening, Gunnedah council approved the contribution of $2250 for the annual event which celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
This year’s showcase will feature activities throughout the week of July 2-9.
Highlights include the NAIDOC exhibition to be held at Bicentennial Creative Arts Gallery on Friday, July 7 followed at the Civic by a Cleverman marathon – a drama series with roots in Aboriginal mythology and local significance.
The celebration continues on Saturday with the NAIDOC Debutante Ball held at the town hall. The theme will be How the birds got their colours”.
Events on Sunday, July 9, include the Cumbo Gunnerah Run – a re-enactment of the Gunn-e-darr warriors' legendary rescue of their tribe.
Also planned on Sunday is a smoking ceremony at Porcupine Lookout and NAIDOC March from Abbott St to the NAIDOC Community Day held at Wolseley Park.
In a written request for financial support, Gunnedah NAIDOC committee chair Cassandra Aldridge said the council funding contribution would assist to develop a “strong and diverse” week-long program of events and activities.
Council’s May business paper indicates previous financial contributions between $4000 and $2250 per year have been approved since 2001. It also list the 2017 NAIDOC theme as “Our Languages Matter” which aims to emphasise and celebrate the unique and essential role that Indigenous languages play in cultural identity, linking people to their land and water and in the transmission of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, spirituality and rites, through story and song.