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NAIDOC Week: how are you celebrating?

NAIDOC Week: how are you celebrating?

The 2024 National NAIDOC Poster incorporating the Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag (licensed by the Torres Strait Island Council). Poster is titled 'Urapun Muy' by Deb Belyea

National NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia in the first week of July each year (Sunday to Sunday), to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth. You can support and get to know your local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander communities through activities and events held across the country.

In 2024, NAIDOC Week runs from 7 July to 14 July. Participating in and celebrating NAIDOC Week (and National Reconciliation Week) – and to promote reconciliation through our sphere of influence – is one of the deliverables in the Branch’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

ANMF (Vic Branch) remains strongly committed to our reconciliation journey. Our RAP was formally endorsed by Reconciliation Australia in November 2023, and action towards all deliverables is now well underway.

Members of the Branch’s Reconciliation Action Plan working group are attending NAIDOC events during the week. Interested members can visit or their local councils to find events in their local area that may be of interest.

About the 2024 NAIDOC Week poster

The National NAIDOC Poster competition has become an iconic feature of National NAIDOC Week and has a rich and significant history beginning in 1967 when the National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) first began producing posters. NAIDOC posters have been exhibited by various Australian cultural institutions such as the National Museum of Australia and reflect not only the many significant social changes that have occurred since 1967 but also evolution of art over the last 54 years.

Each year the National NAIDOC Week Poster Competition encourages Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists aged 16 years and over to submit their artwork which reflects that year’s National NAIDOC Week Theme.

In recent years, the National NAIDOC Week Poster competition winning artists have been afforded numerous opportunities to work with organisations such as the Australian Open, Microsoft, The Project television show and various state travel authorities that have wrapped public transport vehicles in the winning artwork.

The 2024 winner is Urapun Muy by Samuawgadhalgal artist Deb Belyea.

‘Urapun Muy’, from the Kalaw Kawaw Ya dialect of the Top Western Islands of the Torres Strait, means ‘One Fire’.

Artist statement

The title of this work pays homage to Torres Strait Islanders and Aboriginal peoples everywhere, as we all have that one fire: our passion for our culture.

In this work, I have depicted the hands of our ancestors that have carefully dropped a burning ember on to a fire. This ember burns hot with intensity, stoking the flames, as it combines with the new fire. The linear detail shows the energy and power as cultural knowledge is transferred from our ancestors to us today. Culture is the fire that gives us knowledge, wisdom and purpose.

It is our responsibility to maintain, practice, and pass on our fire to our future generations.

Afterall, Culture keeps us Blak, Loud and Proud.