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Indigenous verse back on agenda

Should Australia's national anthem include an Indigenous verse?

The idea has been around for sometime but former senator Aiden Ridgeway has again raised the question about adding an Indigenous verse to our national anthem.

Mr Ridgeway believes, "Most people seem to think the anthem is a little on the dull side so I think we need to do something more to bring it to life and give it connection back to country and that place being Australia."

Read more: Indigenous verse back on agenda

Web revives Indigenous language

Source: SBS News article
Sydney's Aboriginal Darug community are celebrating the launch of a website which has brought the language of their ancestors alive again.

The notebooks belonging to lieutenant William Dawes from the first fleet has allowed historians to create an online version of the 200 year old manuscript.

The manuscript which was rediscovered in London more than 35 years ago, is one of the oldest written sources documenting Aboriginal life and culture during the colonial period.

Until now William Dawes' notebooks were only available in Australia in a poor microfilm version, but the new website has transformed the original text.

It's now available on the SBS website with high quality images and translations.

Community Language Workers Graduate

Graduation for Community Language Workers who completed a Diploma Australian Languages, and Warrgamay Elder who completed A Ba Arts (Language and Linguistics).

Article by Jedda Priman.

On Saturday 19th September 2009, students from the North Queensland region who completed their Diploma of Australian Languages participated in a Graduation Ceremony hosted in conjunction by Girringun Aboriginal Corporation and Batchelor Inst Indigenous Tertiary Education.

Three graduates – Brett Leathers (Warrgamay), Lily Hart (Djirru) and Chris Kennedy (Girramay) received their Diplomas in Australian Languages after completion of the course which was piloted as a community based course commenced in Cardwell, North Queensland and the Batchelor Inst of Tertiary Studies throughout 2007/2008. There were two more graduates who were unable to attend the ceremony – Margaret Go Sam (Jirrabal, Ngadjan) and Shantel Weare (Jirrabal, Ngadjan).

This Graduation ceremony also included a graduate Elder, Bridget Priman (Warrgamay) who completed a BA Arts (Language and Linguistics). Bridget is a Warrgamay Elder who has been working on reviving the Warrgamay Language for the past 11 years and has been involved in the Indigenous Language arena for much of that time both through a State and National level. Bridget has been instrumental in liaising with Batchelor Inst Indigenous Tertiary Education and Girringun Aboriginal Corporation to implement the community based course.

The graduation ceremony marked the success of not only the graduating students but also that of all organisations associated in the implementation of the Diploma course held on country.

Plan To Rescue Threatened Australian Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Indigenous Languages Applauded

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Tom Calma has welcomed the $9.3 million announced by federal Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts, Peter Garrett and Minister for Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin, to help save more than 100 threatened Indigenous languages.

Read more: Plan To Rescue Threatened Australian Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Indigenous Languages...

Research toward a National Indigenous Languages Policy

Have your say!

John Prior (Electorate Officer for Senator Trish Crossin) is researching a National Indigenous Languages Policy for Minister Garrett's office. He welcomes comment as well as pointers to resources and references. He is unsure of the timeframe of this stage of development, so I would suggest contacting him as soon as you are able:

John Prior This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Electorate Officer Office of Senator Trish Crossin PO Box 946 Palmerston 0831 Ph: (08) 89310830 Fax: (08) 89310513 Mob 0409 671 892

Youth the key to save Australian Aboriginal languages

Its estimated that more than half of the 6,000 languages spoken around the world will become extinct over the next century.

Indigenous Australian languages are disappearing the fastest, with one langauge lost every month. But now the race is on to preserve them, before its too late.

Presenter: Madeleine Genner

Nicholas Evans, a linguist from the Australian National University; Richard Green, Dharug teacher

A report on Radio Australia

Indigenous language champion Grant honoured

stan grantA man who has spent decades promoting Indigenous language has been named a member in the General Division of the Order of Australia.

Wiradjuri elder Stan Grant Senior has seen his language almost disappear after it was banned from use.

But Mr Grant has fought to preserve the culture by creating and teaching language and culture programs across southern New South Wales.

His work has taken him to prisons, schools, TAFE colleges and Universities and has lead him to co-author the first Wiradjuri dictionary.

Read the full article

Aboriginal education needs goals

Justine Ferrari, The Australian, May 25, 2009

INDIGENOUS leaders are calling for a national education action plan to be adopted at the next meeting of state and federal governments, setting out specific goals to be reviewed annually.

A working group of indigenous leaders headed by Australian of the Year Mick Dodson is proposing a 25-year action plan along the lines of the compact on indigenous health signed by government and key stakeholders last year.

The initiative comes at the instigation of the Australian Education Union, which approached Professor Dodson to spearhead the development of a long-term plan to overcome the piecemeal approach that has characterised efforts to improve indigenous education in the past.

Professor Dodson has formed a working group with representatives of the AEU and leading Aborigines, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice and Race Discrimination Commissioner Tom Calma and executive director of the Indigenous Education Leadership Institute Chris Sarra, to develop ideas for the plan.

Read entire article

Article with thanks to the Australian Education Digest.

Puliima National Indigenous Languages Information Technology Forum

dsc_5777The 2nd Puliima National Indigenous Languages Information Technology Forum was given a resounding vote of support from the people from around Australia who attended it in Melbourne last month. With its focus on showcasing the best uses of technology to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander language projects, Puliima once again had people exploring new ways to record, publish, teach and promote language within their communities, and considering the possibilities that exist for taking their work to wider audiences.

Read more: Puliima National Indigenous Languages Information Technology Forum

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