Nation building in NAIDOC Week

Daryle Rigney
Professor Rigney is also an affiliated faculty member of the James E. Roger College of Law, Indigenous Peoples’ Law and Policy Program at the University of Arizona.

As Flinders marks NAIDOC Week with the colours of the Australia’s Indigenous peoples atop Flinders at Tonsley, a series of special events are also on the agenda.

Professor Daryle Rigney, Dean of Indigenous Strategy and Engagement at Flinders University, is leading the team delivering Aboriginal Nation (Re)Building Curriculum to the Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association, based in Hawker, and the Ngarrindjeri Regional Authority (NRA), based in Murray Bridge.

Both groups have been recognised by the State Government as South Australia’s first Aboriginal Regional Authorities.

A third group, the Far West Coast Aboriginal Corporation, has also been recognised and will attend a similar workshop later in the year. Other academics from Flinders’ Office of Indigenous Strategy and Engagement (OISE), the University of Arizona, University of Melbourne and University of Technology, Sydney are delivering the workshops.

On 20 July, Professor Rigney and Flinders Associate Professor Steve Hemming will deliver the Flinders Investigators public lecture on the topic of Indigenous nations, resilience and river system health.

They will talk about their nation-building work with the NRA and how developing healthy Indigenous nations can be fundamentally linked to healthy rivers and wetlands.

During NAIDOC Week (3-10 July), four artists from Flinders’ OISE – Ali Gumillya Baker, Natalie Harkin, Associate Professor Simone Ulalka Tur and Faye Rosas Blanch – are staging a special exhibition at Port Adelaide.

Sovereign Acts is an exhibition featuring installation and film supported by the artists’ Open Space Contemporary Arts (OSCA) collective, Flinders University, the City of Port Adelaide Enfield, Arts SA and other sponsors.

The free exhibition will be held at Harts Mill in Mundy St, Port Adelaide until 10 July, with three school performances planned for Wednesday 6 July.

The OISE is also inviting Flinders participation at Friday’s NAIDOC SA March, commencing at Tarndanyangga (Victoria Square, city) at 11am, and finishing at the steps of Parliament House.

The University’s Yunggorendi Student Engagement staff also will be helping at the NAIDOC SA Family Fun Day at Victoria Park, Fullarton Rd (Clipsal site), on Friday 8 July from 11am-4.30pm.

Participants in the march can catch shuttle buses from Parliament House to the festivities at Victoria Park.

Congratulations to Poche Centre for Indigenous Health and Wellbeing Associate Professor Wendy Edmondson for becoming a finalist in this year’s Premier’s awards.

She was nominated for the SA Premier’s NAIDOC Award which recognises outstanding achievements and service to the lives of Aboriginal people in South Australia.

Associate Professor Edmondson, who grew up in Port Augusta, has dedicated her entire 37 year career working in Aboriginal health, education and arts.

‘Songlines – The living narrative of our nation’ is the theme of this year’s NAIDOC Week. For more information  about NAIDOC activities in your local community, visit

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