This is a chance to gather together in a safe space where we can listen to one another, share respectful dialogue and be in presence of some well-known Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders and prominent community members.
Our three speakers who are currently confirmed are: Kiana Charlton, Aunty Mary Graham and Lauren Appo with facilitator Uncle James Sandy.
Aunty Mary Graham grew up in South-East Queensland, and is a Kombu-merri person through her father’s heritage and a Wakka Wakka clan through her mother’s heritage. With a career spanning more than 30 years, Mary has worked across several government agencies, community organisations and universities including: Department of Community Services, Aboriginal and Islander Childcare Agency, the University of Queensland and the Foundation for Aboriginal and Islander Research Action. Mary has written and published many prominent works, including – publications in the Aboriginal Encyclopedia, training modules for Cross Cultural Awareness and a host of academic papers.
Kiana, a Goenpul woman from North Stradbroke Island, is currently studying her Masters in Indigenous Education. Kiana has worked in several schools around Brisbane and has enjoyed collaborating with teachers and schools as part of Reconciliation.
Lauren Appo is a Mamu woman from Innisfail FNQ with connection to Goreng Goreng & Bundjalung country through her grandparents. Lauren has two small children who she is raising by herself. Lauren has a interest in social justice issues and the plight of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Lauren advocates for change and equality for her people.
Uncle James Sandy is a Mununjali man and will facilitate the conversation. Uncle James grew up on the Southside of Brisbane in Inala yet has been living with his family up at Redcliff on the Northside for many years now. He has been working with Education Queensland for over 35 years and is a strong supporter of Benarrawa’s Educators Learning circle among other things.
The Benarrawa Solidarity Group builds relationships with our First peoples, learning their histories and stories and works with them to raise awareness of their lives since British colonization. The aim is to keep the topics alive until injustices are addressed. The Elders and members of the Group also support The Educator’s Learning Circle with teachers from schools in south west Brisbane.