• Alwyn Doolan's arrival in Brisbane marks halfway in his 7000-kilometre walk for change. (NITV)Source: NITV
He began walking all the way from Far North Queensland and will be making his way to Parliament House.
By
Ella Archibald-Binge

23 Nov 2018 - 9:30 AM  UPDATED 23 Nov 2018 - 9:30 AM

For the past six months, Alwyn Doolan has been walking the length of Queensland - from Bamaga, on the tip of Cape York, to Brisbane. 

The gruelling trek, often in tropical heat, has been difficult in more ways than one. 

"It’s not only the physical side of it, it’s also the mentality in the mind – that challenge is very, very great to your mind," he told NITV News. 

His arrival in Brisbane this week marks a major milestone in his 7000km Message Stick Walk. When he arrives in Canberra, he'll be seeking an audience with the prime minister to put a treaty with First Nations peoples back on the national agenda. 

"Hopefully when I arrive there I’ll have an audience of people and I’ll have particularly not just my voice, but all the voices I’ve heard along the way to be heard and put across some form of structure into place that is beneficial for our own communities, for our sustainability," he said. 

The Gooreng Gooreng and Wakka Wakka man decided to take action when he returned to his hometown, the Aboriginal community of Woorabinda in Central Queensland, after nine years living in Melbourne.

"I left [Woorabinda] because I didn’t like how things were, but then when I finally came back it was still the same," he said.

"So I thought how am I going to do something? I want to make a positive change in my community."

Mr Doolan says he chose to walk to make a statement, but also to re-engage with the traditional ways of walking through country and connecting with the land. 

His journey follows Clinton Pryor's walk from Perth to Canberra last year, which ended with Mr Pryor turning his back on the then Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. 

Mr Doolan hopes his arrival in Canberra, which may trail an anticipated federal election in May, will be better received. 

He has already encountered one federal politician on his travels. He confronted special envoy for Indigenous affairs Tony Abbott in Cherbourg earlier this month. 

"I just straight out asked him what was he doing on my country?" said Mr Doolan, who believes the former prime minister has "no business" being involved in Indigenous affairs.

"It was a truthful statement that I was making to him.

"I was on my own traditional country and his discussions happened behind close doors… how are those affairs discussed behind closed doors going to be put from the community, when that’s where it should be coming from?"

Mr Doolan claims too many politicians are serving their own interests, and ignoring the voices of Australia's First Peoples.

He says now is the time for change. 

"There’s something in the air that I believe it’s the right time."