In 2016 The Family Centre developed an Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) which reflects our commitment to ensuring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are involved in all aspects of our organisational decision-making and service delivery, and that we are contributing to the empowerment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the nation. To celebrate the launch of The Family Centre’s Reconciliation Action plan in 2016 – children from South Tweed Primary School sang a song about Bundjalung elder Aunty Kath. These are the lyrics to her song Aunty Kath’s Song

2016-18 RAP Achievements

  • 105 staff, volunteers, Board and service partners have undertaken Banaam’s Cultural Intelligence training
  • Organised 3 Reconciliation Week events
  • Supported multiple NAIDOC week events across 3 Shires each year
  • Supported 2 annual Kinship Festivals via committee, staff and volunteer support
  • Mapped Aboriginal programs and organisations in our area and are building relationships across our program areas
  • Increased the numbers of Aboriginal staff (from 6% to 10%), students and volunteers at TFC
  • Promoted local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community activities, events and stories on our communication channel

Our 2016-18 RAP has drawn to a close and we will be focussing on refreshing our RAP in 2019 in order to continue the work we have begun.

Areas of focus will include:

  • continuing and deepening our cultural training,
  • employment pathways for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at The Family Centre
  • an engagement strategy for connecting with Aboriginal community, organisations and programs at all levels of our organisation
  • participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in program design and delivery
  • continuing our participation in NAIDOC, Reconcilitation Week and other relevant events

Reconciliation Week Event 2018

This year’s theme for Reconciliation Week is ‘Don’t Keep History a Mystery: Learn. Share. Grow.’ It invites us to learn more deeply about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and histories, to share that knowledge and grow as a community here in Tweed and to contribute to our growth as a nation.

Historical acceptance is one of five dimensions that together represent a comprehensive picture of reconciliation, according to Reconciliation Australia. Accepting the truth of the past, comes first, and is fundamental to achieving progress in the other four dimensions – equality and equity, unity, race relations and integrity in our institutions and organisations.

This year a committee from 3 local community organisations The Family Centre, 3SA (Third Sector Australia includes OTCP), and New Horizons and our local government Tweed Shire Council came together to run a movie event and panel afterwards.  Each has made a commitment to Reconciliation and have past, current or new Reconciliation Action Plans. Coming together as a group is an important part of our commitment, as through collective action can we consolidate and bring about broader change.

After the movie we had a panel and audience discussion led by Alf Summers – Service Co-odinator Krurungal. Panel members were Josh Slabb, Director of Banaam – Applied cultural intelligence training, Rob Appo – Community Development Officer Aboriginal – Tweed Shire Council, David Boutkan – Executive Director and RAP Champion –  The Family Centre and Mark Robertson , Founding Director – One Vision. The discussion touched on themes from the movie and how they relate to our local community and issues.

Afterwards Tracey Stinson – Director Community and Natural Resources and RAP Champion Tweed Shire Council, and Tammy Johnson – Aboriginal Engagement Specialist 3SA/OTCP, made announcements about their upcoming RAPs.

Thanks to Hoyts for supporting the event, Yaru water for donating water for the audience, Recycled Mats supporting us with discounts for the beautiful mats we gave away as door prizes, which were designed by local artist Aboriginal artist Christine Slabb.

A Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is a strategic document that supports an organisation’s business or operational plan. It includes practical actions that will drive an organisation’s contribution to reconciliation both internally and in the communities in which it operates.

In the beautifully written and sung words of the young people from Kingscliff High School, whose video “Standing as One”produced and directed by One Vision, was viewed as a short, prior to the movie, “to understand the future we must look at the past”.

The movie we screened, Sweet Country, confronts us with some hard and complex truths about slavery, sexual violence and Aboriginal resistance to exploitation and land seizure, that until now have been largely unacknowledged on the big screen. It’s not a local story, but it could be. The audience was made up of a diverse audience of staff and stakeholders from our organisations and attended by our Mayor Katie Milne, numerous Councillors, and members of Aboriginal Advisory Committees from Tweed Shire Council and The Family Centre.