A BOLD Boandik artwork has been installed on ac.care’s Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre to celebrate National Reconciliation Week.

The event on Tuesday, May 31, followed the launch of the country not-for-profit organisation’s Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan in Berri on May 25, outlining three years of bold action to make a difference in the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Local Aboriginal and broader community representatives, fellow service providers and staff of the homelessness, foster care and human services agency gathered for the unveiling of the mural by Boandik woman Bonnie-May Saunders.

Installation of the artwork is the final stage of a revamp of the Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre design to ensure it is welcoming of all and pays respect to Boandik people as the traditional owners of the Mount Gambier region.

“We want to respectfully acknowledge we work on land that always was and always will be Aboriginal land,” ac.care Stretch RAP champion Jason Wallace said.

“Here in Berrin, Mount Gambier, this land is Boandik land.”

BOLD STATEMENT: Boandik artist Bonnie-May Saunders and ac.care Limestone Coast Reconciliation In Action group chairperson Lynette Heiming celebrate installation of the mural at ac.care's Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre. BOLD STATEMENT: Boandik artist Bonnie-May Saunders and ac.care Limestone Coast Reconciliation In Action group chairperson Lynette Heiming celebrate installation of the mural at ac.care’s Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre.

ac.care worked with Burrandies Aboriginal Corporation to incorporate Bunganditj language and artwork at the centre.

“We have welcomed opportunities to engage appropriately with Burrandies and install this bold artwork highlighting the deep connections that remain across this region for the Boandik people, beautifully illustrated by Bonnie-May,” Mr Wallace said.

Mount Gambier-based Boandik, Meintangk, Gunditjmara, Ngarrindjeri and Narrungga woman Ms Saunders said she was proud to see her work, My Home, displayed on the Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre windows.

“My Home as it is represented in this piece is full of beautiful colours,” she said, explaining the combination of lush green land and extensive water.

“In the centre we have a symbol which represents people sitting and talking together, which emphasises we have a great facility here in Berrin with the Mount Gambier Family Relationship Centre, which keeps families connected and links them with supports,” she said.

“I hope that people look at my piece and remember the importance of culture, families and most of all being connected to Boandik Country.”

UNITED: ac.care trainee James Cooper, Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan champion Jason Wallace, ac.care Limestone Coast Reconciliation In Action group chairperson Lynette Heiming, Boandik artist Bonnie-Mae Saunders, ac.care chairperson Rick Fisher, Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin, Boandik Elder Aunty Michelle Jacquelin-Furr, ac.care senior Aboriginal advisor Kathy Rigney and chief executive officer Shane Maddocks. UNITED: ac.care trainee James Cooper, Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan champion Jason Wallace, ac.care Limestone Coast Reconciliation In Action group chairperson Lynette Heiming, Boandik artist Bonnie-Mae Saunders, ac.care chairperson Rick Fisher, Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin, Boandik Elder Aunty Michelle Jacquelin-Furr, ac.care senior Aboriginal advisor Kathy Rigney and chief executive officer Shane Maddocks.

Mr Wallace said the artwork installation was one step in the three-years of action outlined in the organisation’s Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan.

“We want to be an advocate that stands up, speaks up and makes a difference,” he said, explaining ac.care sought to go beyond generating change and opportunities in the country South Australian communities in which it operates to be part of Reconciliation Australia’s broader national advocacy for change.

“We hope our commitment contributes to the broader movement to create a fairer society, a fairer nation, where everyone is respected, has opportunities to thrive and the value of our First Nations culture, the oldest surviving culture in the world, is recognised, respected and enshrined at the heart of our nation’s foundations and identity,” he said.

“Together we can make a difference and create a society we can all take pride in where everyone belongs and has equal opportunities to participate freely and with equity in all areas of Australian life.”

ac.care’s Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan is available at accare.org.auac.care can be contacted on 1300 ACCARE (1300 222 273).

 

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ac.care Locations

ac.care is a dynamic organisation servicing the South Australian communities the Limestone Coast, Murraylands, Riverland, Adelaide Hills and Fleurieu Peninsula.

Our mission is for all country people to have a safe home, enough money to live on and strong, positive relationships.

Please find our service locations here or use our contact form to request a service.

Mount Gambier
Head office and Foster Care

70-72 White Avenue Mount Gambier, SA 5290
PO Box 1842 Mount Gambier SA 5290
Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Mount Gambier
Community Centre

22-24 Ferrers Street Mount Gambier, SA 5290
Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Mount Gambier
Family Relationship Centre

1 Helen Street (cnr Bay Road) Mount Gambier, SA 5290
Monday
9am to 5pm
Tuesday
10:30am to 5pm
Wednesday
9am to 5pm
Thursday
9am to 5pm
Later by appt
Friday
9am to 5pm

Berri Community Centre
Servicing the Riverland

5 Kealley Street Street Berri, SA 5343
PO Box 1345 Berri, SA 5343
Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Murraylands Centre
Servicing the Murraylands, Adelaide Hills and Fleurieu Peninsula

29 Bridge Street Murray Bridge, SA 5253
PO Box 2090 Murray Bridge, SA 5253
Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm

Millicent
Community Centre

57-59 George Street Millicent, SA 5280
PO Box 378 Millicent, SA 5280
Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm
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