Fun and learning as schools celebrate NAIDOC

CELEBRATING FIRST NATIONS: Jack Bulger from National Parks and Wildlife Services (centre) and his dad, Uncle Paul Bulger, paid a visit to Franklin Public School this week where the school celebrated NAIDOC Week. As schools break up for their mid-year holidays, NAIDOC Week was celebrated across the region with many schools conducting special programs acknowledging the First Nations’ week of celebrations. Pictured with Jack and Uncle Paul are students Nikaeli Bulger, Archie Bradshaw, Ava Whitbread and Rylan Bradshaw. PHOTO: Helen Castles.

Franklin Public School enjoyed a wonderful day of fun and learning as they celebrated NAIDOC Day with Wiradjuri Elders at the school on Thursday. 

With NAIDOC Week running from July 7 to 14 over the upcoming school holidays, Franklin Public celebrated a little early with a special day which started off with a smoking ceremony performed by Wiradjuri Elders, Uncle Pat and Uncle Robert.

Students got the opportunity to cleanse their yidakis (didgeridoos) with the smoke before heading off to participate in a host of fun and educational activities.

The children thoroughly enjoyed their time with Jack Bulger from National Parks and Wildlife Services, along with his dad, Uncle Paul, who hosted sessions on Aboriginal tool making and traditions such as face painting with ochre.

Franklin Public Stage 3 students also enjoyed a cultural day with students at Snowy Valleys School on Wednesday which began with a welcome and a cleansing of the school’s yarning circle by Uncle Pat, followed by damper making.

Students then danced up a storm with Jas Penrith before doing some ochre face painting.

National NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia in July each year to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 

NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth. 

The theme for this year’s NAIDOC celebrations is, ‘Keep the Fire Burning! Blak, Loud and Proud.’

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