Proud in Culture for National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day at Tweddle

Proud in Culture for National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day at Tweddle

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The theme for National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day 2021 (August 4th) is Proud in culture, strong in spirit. The 4th of August was historically used to communally celebrate the birthdays of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children who were taken from their families at a young age, without knowing their birthday – the Stolen Generations.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child states that all children have the right to practice their own culture, language and religion. Minority and Indigenous groups require special protection of this right. Culture is fundamental to the lives of Aboriginal people.

The Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care Incorporation (SNAICC) describes the identity of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child as being intrinsically connected to their family and their relationship with the land.

An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child who has the opportunity to allow his or her culture, identity and spirituality to develop and emerge during childhood has a sense of strength, confidence and pride that has the potential to guide and protect him or her through adolescence and adulthood. (SNAICC 2012)

In 1988, the first National Aboriginal and Islander Children’s Day was established on 4 August and was set against the backdrop of protests led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their supporters during the bicentennial year. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples felt a day was needed to celebrate our children, to give them confidence and make them feel special and included.

While the majority of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are thriving and growing up strong in their cultures, with support from their families and communities, many continue to face discrimination, poverty, systemic removal, intergenerational trauma, dislocation from land and culture, and community disempowerment.

According to the Family Matters Report (2019) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are 2.5 times more likely to be developmentally vulnerable early in life than non-Indigenous children, and only half as likely to access early child care services. Developmentally vulnerable children are less likely to do well at school and are more likely to leave school early and have poorer life outcomes.

Tweddle, now embarking on RAP Innovate, acknowledges that working in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities helps to gain a greater understanding of transgenerational trauma impacts. This is important because we believe in delivering inclusive practice and programs in the best interest of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies, children, and families.

Tweddle has the privilege to work alongside Aboriginal health workers and families. Our vision for reconciliation is that all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies and children in Victoria grow up in a secure environment, supported by strong families with a cultural connection to community. As a health service, we want to play our part championing the rights of Aboriginal People to have opportunities for self-determination.

#NATSIChildrensDay

#ProudInCulture

#StrongInSpirit

https://aboriginalchildrensday.com.au/


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