Aboriginal people represent approximately 4% of the population of Australia. In some locations the proportion in the population is much higher. In any given area, there will be Aboriginal people living there who will be traditionally connected to that area. There will also be Aboriginal people in that area who have traditional connections in other geographic locations.
Aboriginal people have a deep connection to spirituality, relationship networks and creation. These deep connections exist whether they live completely in the culture of modern multicultural Australia or not.
Corps and social programs can find much more effective ways of connecting with Aboriginal people in their community. Here are several important steps:
1. Recognise that Aboriginal people are inherently spiritual
2. Read and find out more about Aboriginal people
3. Fly an Aboriginal Flag
4. Plaque to acknowledge Original Stewards of the land
5. Hang the Reconciliation Painting in a prominent place
6. Visit the Local Traditional Elders in the area where your corps or centre is located
7. Provide facilities and opportunities for Aboriginal people to gather
8. Understand significant Aboriginal issues
9. For corps, ensure worship is culturally appropriate
10. Subscribe to Aboriginal newspapers
11. Engage with special events in the Aboriginal calendar
12. Invite the Territorial Indigenous Ministry Consultant.
You can contact Lloyd Hollingsworth (03) 8878-4766 to seek his advice, guidance and assistance in connecting with his people in your community.