Embracing the Spirit of Reconciliation

Reconciliation Week, observed from May 27th to June 3rd, marks two pivotal milestones in Australia's history: the successful 1967 referendum and the 1992 Mabo decision. These events represent the strength and resilience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and their ongoing struggle for recognition and justice. At Kids First Australia, we are deeply inspired by this spirit of resilience and are dedicated to embedding the principles of reconciliation into every aspect of our work.

Our Commitment to Reconciliation

Kids First is steadfast in our commitment to reconciliation. This commitment is reflected in our programs and services, which are designed to support children, young people, and families. We believe that reconciliation is not just about words, but about actions that drive tangible change. To this end, our Reconciliation Action Plan Committee is developing a comprehensive Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) that reflects our broadened scope and national outlook following Whitelion Youth merging into Kids First in late 2023. 


Celebrating Our Achievements

This Reconciliation Week, we celebrate the progress we have made on our reconciliation journey. Here are some of the key achievements that underscore our dedication:

  • Cultural Competency Training: We have implemented mandatory cultural competency training for all staff members to ensure a deep understanding and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. This training is an ongoing process, and we are committed to continually improving our cultural awareness.
  • Partnerships with Indigenous Communities: We have established strong partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, ensuring that our programs for First Nations young people are culturally appropriate and meet the specific needs of these unique communities. Our partnerships are built on mutual respect and a shared vision for the future.
  • Youth Empowerment Programs: Our programs for young people are designed to empower, providing each young person with the skills, support, and opportunities they need to thrive. We are proud of the positive impact these programs have had on young people's lives and their communities. These programs have included: 
  1. Deadly Lions, providing individualised support to First Nations young people who are at-risk and/or have had contact with the youth justice system.
  2. Deadly Diversions, intensive case management for young people who have had sustained contact with the youth justice system, supporting them to develop positive, sustainable life pathways.
  3. Balga and Ballajura drop-in centres, providing a safe, welcoming space for young people to grab a meal, make friends, and engage with our services.
  4. Employment and Career Development: We are committed to increasing the representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples within our workforce. Our initiatives include targeted recruitment, career development programs, and support for our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander colleagues to advance in their careers.


Looking Forward

While we celebrate our achievements, we recognise that there is still much work to be done. Reconciliation is a continuous journey that requires dedication, honesty, and a willingness to confront and address the inequalities that persist in our society. Moving forward, we are committed to:


  • Advocacy and Education: We will continue to advocate for policies and practices that promote social justice and equality for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Additionally, we will expand our efforts to educate the broader community about the importance of reconciliation and the rich cultural heritage of Australia's First Nations peoples.
  • Listening and Learning: We will ensure that the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are heard and respected. By creating opportunities for listening and learning, we can co-create solutions that drive meaningful change.
  • Sustainable Impact: Our programs will be continually evaluated and adapted to ensure they are effective and sustainable. We are committed to making a lasting impact that goes beyond Reconciliation Week and contributes to the long-term well-being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.


A Call to Action

As we celebrate Reconciliation Week, we call on everyone – our staff, partners, supporters, and the broader community – to join us in this journey. Reconciliation is a collective effort that requires the commitment and participation of all Australians. By working together, we can build a nation where the rights, cultures, and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are valued and respected.

Reconciliation Week is a time to reflect, celebrate, and commit to the path ahead. I am proud of our contributions to reconciliation and our entire team is determined to continue this important work. Together, let us honour the past, embrace the present, and build a future where reconciliation is a lived reality for all Australians.

Thank you for your ongoing support and dedication to reconciliation.

Clare Lombardi

Director, Marketing & Communications


National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.
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