Rise team member Rhiarn Snowden shares her thoughts about Reconciliation Week.
What is your familiar/cultural history and how has this shaped your values?
"My name is Rhiarn Snowden. My cultural history is based in Gundabooka, NSW. Our tribe is made up of Gundabooka Ngemba people. Our main value that we hold in high regard is family. We are always there for each other and supporting one and other through both good and bad times. My great great grandfather, Frank Williams was a tracker for the Byrock Police Force in Bourke, NSW in 1938. He then went on and received the King’s medal in 1943 before retiring in 1950. Family was very important to him and this has been passed down through generations and is still strong today within our family unit. Frank helped a lot of people and I want to carry on his legacy in a different way and profession by helping people with disabilities."
What kind of experiences did you have growing up in the community?
"Growing up in the Indigenous community, especially at school I was questioned on my culture due to the fairness of my skin. I was always having to explain myself to others why I would participate in Indigenous programs and if I was supposed to be there. My dad told me it doesn’t matter how light or dark a cup of tea is, it’s still a cup of tea."
What actions can both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people take to help close the gap?
"Actions that Indigenous and non-Indigenous people can do to close the gap is to stop the divide and work together. Attending Indigenous events can signify unity between all Australians. Also spreading awareness with the use of technology and social media is a great way to get people talking."
What does Reconciliation mean to you?
"Reconciliation means to me equality for all and bringing all Australians together to create one strong unit."
Disability Support Worker
We run social groups for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to get together for a yarn in a friendly and informal setting. Call 08 6274 3700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org