Saturday, 15 December 2012

Australian television history has been made, with the launch of the first free to-air national Indigenous television network.

Australian television history has been made, with the launch of the first free to-air national Indigenous television network.
NITV was switched from pay TV to free-to-air at noon (AEDT) on Wednesday 12th December, with a ceremony at Uluru to mark the historic day (12/12/12). 
NITV now airs on channel 34 (SBS4) on digital TV. It will also broadcast on Foxtel on channel 180.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Peoples Recognition Bill

The Australian Government today took an important step towards recognising Indigenous people in Australia’s Constitution with the introduction of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples Recognition Bill 2012 into Parliament.
This Act of Recognition provides an opportunity for Parliament to show its support and commitment to constitutional recognition of Australia’s First Peoples.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Geelong One Fire Annual General Meeting - a date for your diary

The 2012 Annual General Meeting of Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group will be on November 20th, 2012 followed by our final Open Film night for 2012.

We hope you can join us. Details as follows:
  • AGM TIME: 6.45 pm
  • Film - The First Australian
  • VENUE: Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative, Morgan St, North Geelong.

Any queries please email:

Monday, 4 June 2012

Reconciliation in the Park May '12 & launch of 'Djillong' Website

Held at Johnstone Park in Geelong, this annual event for National Reconciliation Week was developed in partnership with Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-op.

Activities included: local Aboriginal dancers, Uncle Herb Pattern playing the gum leaf, storytelling by Uncle David Tournier, basket making, emu egg carving, jumping castle, face painting, BBQ and the launch of the new 'Djillong' website: - the cheque was presented by Councillor Eddy Kontelj for the website to two of its creators: Uncle David Tournier and Glenda Mac Naughton (see below).

Art work was also on at the Geelong Art Gallery & Geelong Regional Library - by students from local schools: Whittington Primary, Newcomb Secondary, Western Heights College and Clonard College. (See photos at - )

Monday, 14 May 2012

Aboriginal cultural heritage walk to be held at Big Rock, You Yang

 The walk is to be held on Monday 28 May 2012 and Sunday 3 June 2012 commencing @ 10.30 am.

Interested participants should register with Council FIRST as places are limited to 30 persons per walk.

If any member of One Fire Reconciliation group is interested please phone Julie or Cassandra at the City of Greater Geelong on ph 5272 5024 from Monday 14 May 2012.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Djillong and Wathaurong on The Pulse - download the podcast

Djillong and Wathaurong

Greg Mc Henry writes:

"I chat with Uncle David Tournier, Ron Milligan and Glenda McNaughton about our local history, and how they are on a quest to collect as much information and any artifacts that will tell us the real stories. We talk of The Mystery of the Medal? where is Dan Dan Nook's medal now?

Dan Dan Nook (Derdanook) is a Wathaurong man who competed in the early Highland games in the region. He won a medal which proclaimed him to be the 'fastest runner in Geelong'. He was chief of the Barrabool clan. He died of tuberculosis in the Geelong Invalid Asylum in 1870 and is buried in the Western cemetery. After his death there was only one traditional Wathaurong living in the Geelong region.

And we hear about a song written by Ron, about Willem Baa Nip (King Billy), the last of the local Wathaurong.

We also talk about the Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group that is showing Indigenous films - check their site for more information.

If you have any information or artifacts, call Uncle David on 5277 0044 or call in at 62 Morgan St. North Geelong."

From The Pulse website:

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Date for your diary - Sunday 13th May, ABC Message Stick Program

Senior Australian of the Year: Racing against Time

95 years young ‘Big Boss’ Laurie Baymarrwangga has launched a new project amid renewed calls to save Australia’s threatened indigenous languages. The Senior Australian of the year is working hard on a trilingual Yan-nhangu Dictionary Publishing Project that she hopes will be distributed to every primary school in Australia. A unique and profoundly important project. Working from her homeland on remote Murrungga Island she believes this three language learning resource will protect her rare language Yan-nhangu, and help promote the living language Dhuwal/a, (7000 speakers). It will also encourage English-bilingual teaching and indigenous language education across Australia. Filled with colour pictures, ecological knowledge, art, songs and stories of country that are the real jewels of our distinctive national cultural heritage. Her amazing life story ‘Big Boss: Race against Time’ will screen on Sunday the 13th of May at 1.30pm on the ABC’s Message Stick Program.

Details can be found at

Reminder - Film night for Reconciliation on 15th May

A great opportunity to see Mad Bastards - “a beautifully measured take on violence and redemption … irresistible … a sublime soundtrack… a triumph in every sense.” (94 mins)
  • Venue: Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-op, Lot 62 Morgan Street, North Geelong Victoria 3215 (please park outside the entrance, and follow the signs)
  • Time: 7.30pm, 15th May, 2012
  • Cost: donations appreciated

All movies will include some discussion time afterwards.

Please let us know if you need help to get there:

Discovering Your Mob Geelong 4 May 2012

Geelong Heritage Centre, 51 Little Malop Street, Geelong

A day of information about researching family and community connections and
cultural heritage through the collections of Public Record Office Victoria
and National Archives of Australia, with contributions from the Wathaurong
Aboriginal Cooperative.

Free event but bookings are essential – call 03 9348 5600 or email

Monday, 23 April 2012

Reconciliation Victoria's Autumn Newsletter

You can download Reconciliation Victoria's Autumn Newsletter here. 
Learn about what's happening in Geelong and around Victoria.

Saturday, 21 April 2012


Here's an extract from the Media Release- Constitutional Campaign Director - we thought you might be interested in.

Reconciliation Australia today announced the appointment of Tim Gartrell to lead You Me Unity—the nationwide education campaign about recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia’s Constitution. 

Mr Gartrell recently led the successful GenerationOne campaign to decrease Indigenous disparity through education, training and employment. Reconciliation Australia is the peak body promoting reconciliation between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians. 

Reconciliation Australia has been nominated by the Australian Government to lead the public education campaign on the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Australian Constitution. Media contact: Karen Mundine 0401 119 998

Friday, 23 March 2012

New website for reconciliation

Pop by the Reconciliation Australia website for some great ways to become involved in Reconciliation Week in May 2012. We'll have more about Reconciliation in the Park (27th May) here in Geelong (Djillong) shortly. Stay tuned.

Great success for the first GOFRG film night: next one May 15th

GOFRG was delighted that 35 people came to the Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative in North Geelong to see 'The Experience of William Buckley' for our first movie viewing of the year, in March.

Geelong library have now bought a copy of the DVD, so you can also watch this magnificent program about our local history. Thanks to the library for supporting reconciliation......

Remember to put 15th May in your diaries for the next film night featuring 'Mad Bastards'.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Closing the Gap forum in Geelong 21st March 2012

When: Wednesday 21st March
Time: 9am registration to 4pm
(Morning tea and lunch provided)

Geelong Clinical School,
285 Ryrie St, Geelong,
Enter via front of Kitchener House
Places are limited - RSVP closes 16th March

Please register your name, email, organisation and position to:
(Please indicate any dietary requirements with your RSVP)

Elizabeth Pike honored in the Indigenous Honor Roll

2012 saw the launch of the Indigenous Honour Roll.  Amongst the inspiring stories of overdue recognition of some inspirational people was a local Aboriginal woman - Elizabeth Pike. 

Reconciliation week events in Geelong May 2012

The Geelong Art Gallery will be hosting a children's art exhibition in collaboration with Geelong One Fire during Reconciliation week in May 2012. To stay in touch with reconciliation week events at the Gallery please follow this link:

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group will host movie evenings every 2 months during 2012

Venue: Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-op
Lot 62 Morgan Street, North Geelong Victoria 3215
(please park outside the entrance, and follow the signs)
Time: 7.30pm on a Tuesday evening
Cost: donations appreciated:

All movies will include some discussion time afterwards.
Please let us know if you need help to get there:

  • 20th March: Reincarnation of William Buckley – “the incredible story of William Buckley: the escaped convict who lived with Aboriginal people in Victoria for 32 years in the early 1800s, before Melbourne was established” (ABC1/December Films, 60mins)
  • 15th May: Mad Bastards - “a beautifully measured take on violence and redemption … irresistible … a sublime soundtrack… a triumph in every sense.” (94 mins)
  • 17th July: Bush Mechanics – “The adventures of a group of outback Aboriginal Musicians & their never ending car trouble. Bodgy(but effective) repairs save the day”(30mins)
  • 18th September: Murunduk – (songs of freedom) is a feature documentary that journeys into the heart of Aboriginal protest music following The Black Arm Band (92 mins)
  • 20th November & AGM: The First Australians – episode 3, focuses on the first Australians of Victoria and the lives of Simon Wonga and William Barak (60 mins)

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Wathaurong & One Fire perspectives on Australia Day (Invasion Day) - a podcast

  • Wathaurong and Invasion Day - a podcast on the Pulse Community Radio (Geelong). An interview with Uncle David Tournier (Wathaurong Co-operative) and Glenda Mac Naughton (One Fire Reconciliation Group). January 2012 is available for download at the following link:
From the Pulse summary of the podcast:
This is a chat that goes all over the place about celebrations on the 26th January for Australians and talks of discrimination, lack of understanding, and our need for reconciliation. "Uncle" David Tournier and Professor Glenda MacNaughton are locals - David is heavily involved in educating our community about Indigenous Culture and History, and Glenda is on a steep learning curve to find out about where and what her birth area is all about, and how we can educate our young to accept their community. We also talk about her work with the Centre for Equity and Innovation in Early Childhood ? now - Equity and Childhood Program - as well as about the Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group, whose aim is to foster and promote reconciliation in the region. Keep your eye out for the Geelong One Fire website ( The Wathaurong Co-op can be contacted at -  Lot 62 Morgan St.- Nth Geelong, 3215 or Ph.(03) 5277 0044 Wathaurong Health Centre is at 20a Forster St - Norlane 3214 - Ph: (03) 5277 2038 

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Experiences & Thoughts from the 40th Tent Embassy event in Canberra, 2012

CoGG Bus - thanks to Councillor Eddy Kontelj

The opportunity to be part of the 40th Anniversary of such an historical event was a privilege.

The coming together of peoples from all over Australia displayed every ones intention to discuss the way forward for Aboriginal people and acknowledgement of their Culture.
I sincerely wish to extend my thanks to the organisers, volunteers, attendees, family and friends for a truly impressive show of support and true Australianism - where people look out for each other.

26 January 2012 at the Tent Embassy in Canberra was a wonderful opportunity to be part of a group of people showing solidarity and commitment to the future of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders …. Australia’s First Nations Peoples. The Tent Embassy has long been a living protest and symbol of the struggle for Aboriginal Rights.
In the words of Gary Foley ‘Native Title is Not Land Rights, and Reconciliation is Not Justice’.
This 40 year continuous protest is about Aboriginal Sovereignty, about the ability for Aboriginal people to control their own affairs. Aboriginal Australia wants  an acknowledgement for a sovereignty that was never ceded.
This protest has seen an incredible amount of criticism of Indigenous Australians …. After reading many articles regarding the events of the day …. I was most distressed to read the comments by the ‘Average Aussie’ …. For those of you who are under the delusion that Australia is not a racist country …. Think again ….!!! Not many really wanted to know exactly what happened ….but were given to great opinions based on misinformation that came from the leaders of this country and their staff ….. and the ‘beat up’ media coverage that followed. The media coverage gave license to many of those hateful comments. For a long time, Australia's media has refused to provide a platform to Indigenous Australians, except those who, tell white Australia what they want to hear: ...that we're ‘doing our best to save the unsaveables, and that the demise of Aboriginal people is really their own fault’

This protest has shown white Australia that many Indigenous Australians are angry… who can be surprised ????

Speaking to the mainstream media Mr Abbott inferred the Aboriginal Embassy is past it’s use-by-date.
A few hours later Mr Michael Anderson and his diplomatic aides visited Her majesty’s Opposition Leader in personaand delivered a clear reply:
Always Was!
Always Will Be!
Aboriginal Land!
The original cause of the establishment of the embassy 40 years ago – the creation of an alien people on their land through the seizure of natural inheritance of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people by Captain Crook and the White Pirates, remains.
224 years on, the thorn of disputed sovereignty continues to sap the national soul.
It was a lesson learnt again on 26th January 2012.

It was a great honour to be part of the group from Geelong to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Aboriginal Embassy.
Community representatives from across Australia were present. We marched to Parliament House and then became part of the hundreds of people greeting each other and listening to speakers informing us of history since the formation of the Embassy in 1972.

Michael Anderson: the only surviving member of the four men who set the embassy up in 1972, spoke along with many other elders who have been part of the embassy activities over the 40 years. Ideas were shared for many aspects of the journey ahead, including sovereignty.