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City of Ballarat celebrates National Reconciliation Week with launch of its third Reconciliation Action Plan

The City of Ballarat launched its third Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) 2019-2021 today as part of National Reconciliation Week.

A strategic framework, the RAP is the City of Ballarat’s commitment to supporting the reconciliation process and articulates how council and stakeholders will advance reconciliation and contribute to greater unity within the Ballarat community.
As the City of Ballarat’s third RAP, this plan further cements the achievements of the first two plans and outlines the organisation’s innovative and aspirational strategies to work towards reaching reconciliation while empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

“This RAP outlines a raft of achievable actions that work towards realising the City of Ballarat’s unique vision for reconciliation,” City of Ballarat Mayor Cr Samantha McIntosh says.
“It aims to increase inclusiveness, equity, representation and quality of life for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Ballarat.”

The City of Ballarat’s Intercultural Services team worked with the Koorie Engagement Action Group (KEAG) and Reconciliation Australia to deliver the RAP. The RAP features portraits of local women exhibited during the Ballarat Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Portrait and Storytelling project ‘Because of Her We Can’, held as part of NAIDOC Week last year.

National Reconciliation Week runs annually from 27 May-3 June. The Week is a time for all Australians to learn about our First People’s history, culture and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

The City of Ballarat will hold several events to celebrate National Reconciliation Week:
Tuesday 28 May, 10.30–11.30am
Little Languages Storytime
Approx ages 3-5 years
Ballarat Aquatic and Lifestyle Centre
Children can sing, dance and read about the local Wadawurrung people

Wednesday 29 May, 8.45am–1pm
On Country Bus Tour
Fully booked. Register your name on the wait list, in the event of any cancellations: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/national-reconciliation-week-on-country-bus-tour-tickets-61021641372
Pick up and drop off from Civic Hall
A unique cultural experience including visits to sites of local significance, explanations and historical context from First Nations Peoples. Learn firsthand about Ballart’s traditional landscapes and surrounds.

Thursday 30 May, 2–3pm
Spoken Stories
Ballarat Library
Be captivated by stories that celebrate our First Nations Peoples.

Thursday 30 May, 4-5pm
Language Café
Ballarat Library
Bringing people from all walks of life together to chat in different languages, improve English conversation skills, make new connections and share culture, food and interests in an informal and inclusive environment.

Saturday 1 June, 11am-1pm
Discovering the Wadawurrung for Reconciliation Week
Art Gallery of Ballarat
Discover aspects of our local Indigenous culture in this free drop-in session with local Wadawurrung artist Deanne Gilson, including a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony, ochre painting and a concluding celebration dance.