The theme for NAIDOC Week 2018 is Because of Her, We Can. It celebrates, in particular, the significant part that First Nations women play as role models in the community.

We’ve asked around SYC for some insight from our own First Nations employees about the theme. These women make a significant contribution to our organisation and the lives of our clients.

Anarla, Youth Justice Case Manager at SYC, said Aboriginal women are like glue in the community.

“They keep our families together and sacrifice themselves to keep the family moving and thriving. Many times Aboriginal woman in the community bite off more than they can chew but they do it because they are our lifeblood.

“They embody strength, perseverance and courage in the face of adversity. If it weren’t for these women our families and communities wouldn’t be as connected or strong,” said Anarla.

Many First Nations women express that they take the experiences and advice shared through their family, ingrain it into their work and pass it along to benefit others.

“My grandmother Margaret who was the matriarch of our family is the woman I look up to as an inspiration.

“The values she imparted on our family are what we are ingrained with to this day. She taught us strength, resilience, to always work our hardest for what we want and believe in, and to never give up the fight,” said Anarla.

Job Prospects Mentor and Placement Support Officer, Kylie, also shares her personal story to support her clients on their personal journeys.

“I tell my clients about my life experiences and the journey I have been on so far to empower them so they know that they too can also achieve their goals and dreams.

“With my colleagues I love to share my culture and teach them the traditional cultural ways we are still using every day,” said Kylie.

This NAIDOC Week we celebrate all First Nations women, acknowledge their accomplishments and appreciate the focus they place on supporting the next generation.