NAIDOC Week 2020
Honouring the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, we hosted celebrations at Imbil and Bribie Island with Kabi Kabi people and at Tuan with Butchulla people to celebrate this year’s NAIDOC Week theme Always Was, Always Will Be.
Acknowledgement of country
We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples as the Traditional Custodians and First Nations Peoples of the place we work, live and learn. We pay our respects to their ancestors and Elders past, present and emerging and thank them for enriching us with their cultural practices, traditions, lore and connection to country.
Always Was, Always Will Be recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years and the spiritual and cultural connection Indigenous people have to this country. It recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were Australia’s first explorers, first navigators, first engineers, first farmers, first botanists, first scientists, first diplomats, first astronomers and first artists.
To acknowledge Indigenous people as the first people and their connections to country HQP now manages, we hosted several activities before during and shortly after NAIDOC Week with the Kabi Kabi people at Bribie Island and Amamoor and the Butchulla people at Tuan.
Greg Stuckey, most of the Beerburrum team and Lesley from North Lakes attended a Bora Ring with Leisha and Phil Krause of the Ngunda Joondoburri clan of the Kabi Kabi people and Kerry Jones, one of the native title holders, along with representatives from Healthy Land and Water, Turnstone Archaeology and other guests. It was a great opportunity to learn more about how the Kabi Kabi people then and now care for Yarun (Bribie Island) and it’s flora and fauna.
Kabi Kabi people Russell and Vicki Bennet, Russell’s sister Lisa Powell and father Tom along with representatives from Anglicare provided a moving Welcome to Country for our Imbil team and David West with a powerful song by Russell, followed by a tasty bush tucker lunch and a botanical interpretative walk guided by Russell and Lisa.
Russell has a particular interest in various bush nut species including native macadamias and enjoyed pointing these and other interesting native species out to us along with interesting stories about how to identify and use them. Russell works for Anglicare providing foster and kinship care for Indigenous and non-indigenous youth in need. Together, Russell and the kids do some cats claw control in the area. Jayden, one of the teens in Russell’s care was a great help on the day.
The Butchulla people welcomed our Toolara and Tuan teams, along with the CEO and some CLT members, to country at Tuan with a ceremonial dance, song and tongue-twisting Butchulla language lesson followed by a celebratory lunch.
We unveiled an old Tuan bridge girder made from local timber that has been installed at the Tuan depot and will be painted and carved by the Butchulla people, and presented gifts of young Araucaria trees and local honey from the plantation.
Butchulla representatives and Butchulla Indigenous Industry Group representative Norman Barney spoke poignantly about the growing relationship between the Butchulla people and HQPlantations and the importance of meaningful work for Butchulla people on Country.
The BIIG crew were part of the cultural ceremony and were delighted to be given highly-prized HQP caps.