The recently launched Building Aboriginal Cultural Competency programs seek to introduce the history of Victorian Aboriginal people, their culture and identity to create an awareness of Aboriginal communities today through understanding the past.
Building Aboriginal Cultural Competency programs are a new initiative of the Koorie Heritage Trust (KHT) and cater for organisations as well as individuals across Australia.
These programs are delivered by experienced facilitators who bring their own personal stories and experience to provide an insight and understanding of the complex issues about Aboriginal communities and what it means to be an Aboriginal person today.
Bernadette Atkinson belongs to the Wolithiga Clan, Yorta Yorta Nations and is one of Building Aboriginal Competency Programs facilitators.
She has over 30 years’ experience working in government, community and academic areas predominantly around Aboriginal education and cultural awareness.
To create a society that embraces diversity and inclusion, it is critical that truth telling, the history of colonisation and its impact on Aboriginal people is fully known.
In a conversation with NITV Radio, Bernadette Atkinson explained how the programs provide tools for effective cultural engagement with Aboriginal people in a respectful and meaningful way. “We do this through what we call effective cultural engagement," Bernadette Atkinson said.
"We believe it is done in a respectful and meaningful way, helping individuals and organisations build on foundations of awareness so they can then themselves establish meaningful relationships with Aboriginal individuals as well as communities.”
KHT website emphasises that to create a society that embraces diversity and inclusion, it is critical that truth telling, the history of colonisation and its impact on Aboriginal people is fully known.