We were not part of any formal delegation: just a group of Christians from a church on the northern beaches of Sydney who felt it important to go.
In the photos there is Mike and Sarah Dalton, Matt, Francesca and Stephanie Dalton, Nicky and Pip Lock.
Why did you Walk for Reconciliation in the year 2000?
We wanted to make a personal commitment to the matter of reconciliation between Indigenous and non Indigenous Australians. Saying ‘sorry’ for the harm that has been done to Indigenous peoples in Australia was an important part of that. Taking our children was also important to teach them something of the importance of the matter.
What has changed in the last 20 years and what are you presently doing for Reconciliation?
Sadly I am not convinced that a lot has changed….personally I try to stay abreast of the issue, subscribing to various FaceBook pages etc to keep hearing the story. A couple of years ago I went to East Arnhem land on a week long basket making trip at Gunbalanya, where I and a group of non Indigenous women visited a group of Indigenous basket makers at Gunbalanya each day, learned how they foraged for materials, learned basket making skills from them sitting in their back yards with their families and shared a beer with them at the local club. I felt very privileged to have had this time with these wonderful women. Meeting with the women has been transformative for me in trying to understand how reconciliation could work….
What is your vision of Reconciliation for the next 20 years?
We (non Indigenous people) have so much to learn from our Indigenous brothers and sisters and we have sidelined them for so long. My vision would be for us to truly walk side by side and create a country where all the richness from both cultures is valued and contributes to the ongoing development of this nation – born out of hardship and pain and a terrible impact on the Indigenous people of Australia. Only as we fully acknowledge that, can we move forward.