This National Reconciliation Week children contributed hundreds of hands of commitment for reconciliation. The hands were created by children and placed on the lawn at St Stephen’s Cathedral to demonstrate our commitment to reconciliation.
Each child from across our long day care, kindergarten and outside school hours care services created a handprint and shared on it a message of hope for the future or something they would like to learn about Indigenous cultures or reconciliation. The art project was created especially for National Reconciliation Week that runs from 27 May to 3 June 2022 with the theme of “Be Brave. Make Change.”
[Pictured: Alana Crouch, Childcare Services Director (left) and Kirsten Holland, General Manager of Program and Practice (right)]
Catholic Early EdCare’s General Manager of Program and Practice, Kirsten Holland said, “The business of reconciliation is about shared histories and truth telling.
“We asked all the children and educators across our services to put their hand up and make a commitment to knowing more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, and knowing more about the communities in which they live.”
To create the colourful art project Ms Holland said hundreds of conversations had taken place over the last few weeks.
“We have been sitting around tables, sitting together and yarning together,” she said.
"Children have written on these hands what they wanted to know about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and histories and traditions."
Ms Holland said many of the questions asked by children related to understanding more about Indigenous practices – food, dance, music and art.
There are also statements about wanting Australia to be equal for all children.
“We know that under the Closing the Gap targets the measures for Aboriginal children have not been met in Australia,” she said.
“We haven’t really done a great job of that.”
Ms Holland said National Reconciliation Week is 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.
Each ‘hand of commitment’ captures a child’s hope for reconciliation in Australia.
Find out more about Catholic Early EdCare or a service near you here.
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