Hundreds of Goodstart centres embrace National Reconciliation Week 2021 - #NRW2021
Each year, Goodstart – from our centres to our centre support offices – embrace National Reconciliation Week (27 May – 3 June), as an important time to reflect, discuss and take more action for reconciliation – both on a personal and professional level.
This year’s National Reconciliation Week theme #MoreThanAWord was a powerful way for our 16,000 Goodstarters to reflect about our responsibility to ensure the next generation of Australians grow up with connection to and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, people, and our true history.
Through Goodstart’s unique opportunity to engage with 70,700 children in our centres, we believe we can meet that responsibility and make a difference in the lives of all children.
About National Reconciliation Week (NRW) #NRW2021
It’s 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.
The dates for NRW remain the same each year; 27 May to 3 June. These dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey— the successful 1967 referendum, and the High Court Mabo decision respectively.
Celebrating #NRW2021 at Goodstart
Take a look a snapshot of some of – hundreds of examples – of how our centres embraced #NRW2021.
Goodstart Brisbane - Ann Street, Qld
At Goodstart Brisbane Meeanjin Ann St, we invited each room to research Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander Art then encouraged the children to create their own perspective of the art they researched. Toddler room explored the animals that are significant to the Torres Strait Islands, Senior Toddlers learned about 'Dorothy Napangardi'- a leading contemporary Aboriginal artist while our Prekindy and Kindergarten learned how to make Ochre paint and used it to mimic Aboriginal signs.” Jodie Embrey, Senior Educator, Goodstart
Brisbane - Ann Street
Goodstart Red Hill, Qld
To mark the beginning of #NRW2021 the team planted their “Sea of Hearts installation out in our community. We will be planting these hearts of healing every day this National Reconciliation Week. So many passers by have stopped to read our community’s words for healing and reconciliation, and some have been taking a heart home with them to decorate and return.” – Renee Janet Mitchell, Centre Director, Goodstart Red Hill
Goodstart Goodstart Griffith – Sanders Street, NSW
“We commenced our partnership with Murrumbidgee Regional High School and invited the Clontarf boys into or service to celebrate Reconciliation Week. The Clontarf program at our local high school is for Aboriginal boys to improve their education, discipline, life skills, self esteem and employment opportunities and by doing so equips them to participate more meaningfully in society. These boys are focussed on connecting with their culture and shared this with us through cultural dance and didgeridoo playing. It was a wonderful opportunity for our children who most enjoyed the performance. The boys cannot wait to return in a few weeks to explore creative arts.” Tahnee Jamieson, Centre Director, Goodstart Goodstart Griffith – Sanders Street
Goodstart centres in NT
All NT Goodstart centres came for an important cause for #NRW2021 – they teamed up to raise funds for the Children’s Ground
and “Wear it Yellow Day” and involved children and families too!
Goodstart Point Vernon, QLD
Along with a range of learning experiences for children, they painted pavers to celebrate #NRW2021.
“We painted some pavers for the playground garden…we will place the pavers in the garden and create a garden of reflection and exploration to support our vision and understandings of reconciliation.” – Lisa Marie-Reilly, Centre Director, Goodstart Point Vernon
Goodstart Parramatta, NSW
“Part of our RAP is to learn and strengthen our own knowledge and understanding. Today our team (Goodstart Parramatta) took part in deep listening, learning and reflecting at the unsettled exhibition at the Australian Museum. We cannot wait to unpack and share with our children and families what we learnt today.” Milica Zec-Karan, Assistant Director, Goodstart Parramatta
Goodstart Elizabeth Vale, SA
“Our wonderful cook Bec made these delicious lemon myrtle and ginger cookies…this inspired our centre to decorate our own cookies with the children across the centre. For afternoon tea we also enjoyed some wattle seed and sultana scones. We are working hard to embed bush tucker foods into our weekly menus.” – Natasha Parsons, Assistant Director, Goodstart Elizabeth Vale
Goodstart Stratton, WA
“Our Teacher Saja Cheaib took action ahead of National Reconciliation Week “to build her confidence in speaking the Noongar language. Saja the Toddlers room start the day off with an Acknowledgment of Country – to extend on this Saja has been supporting the toddlers to deliver the Acknowledgement in Noongar.” – Corrine Bell, Centre Director, Goodstart Stratton
About reconciliation at Goodstart
We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of Australia and as the custodians of the land on which we live. This respect is woven and embedded into everything we do. We’re focused on building connections, celebrating Indigenous culture and providing an early learning environment where all children feel welcome.
Our purpose is for every child to have the best possible start in life. We have a unique opportunity to influence and educate current and future generations of Australians and embed a respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, cultures and histories, combating racism by providing a different dialogue through a shared understanding of Australia’s past and present.