Gina Williams’ Remarkable Story

For almost two decades Gina Williams has been dedicated to the telling of stories; both her own story and the story of her people.

Gina is a Balladong Noongar woman who uses the traditions of her elders to take audiences on an amazing journey of a proud Aboriginal woman who has struggled through the dysfunction of the past and embraced the hope of the future. Her story unfolded piece by piece in her younger years as she discovered that she was adopted and that she was indigenous. Life seemed to take turn after turn, as she went from one home to another. Gina says she’s one of the few people who can actually claim that she has four families.

Gina is a multi WAMi award winner including The Most Popular Local Original Indigenous Act and this Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings she’ll perform Downstairs at the Maj featuring songs from her album Brilliant Blue.

Gina was my guest during the morning programme on 98.5 Sonshine FM today. You can hear part of her story by clicking the play button on the audio player at the bottom of this post.


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Today I’m asking you to do two things.

Firstly, please take one minute to watch the video in this post.

Secondly, instead of simply agreeing that the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous people is shocking and unacceptable, go to GenerationOne.

So often we hear about injustice and wish there was something we could do. GenerationOne will give you the tools to be part of the change that is required.

You can stay up to date with news of GenerationOne by following GenerationOne on Twitter or GenerationOne on Facebook.

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IBERA helps close the gap

closethegap.jpgThe gap between the health of Indigenous Australians and the rest of our population is a scandal. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have a life expectancy 17 years less than other Australians.

Last week an innovative tool was launched in Canberra which aims to help ‘Close the Gap’ between Indigenous and non-Indigenous life expectancy rates in Australia.

IBERA or Indigenous Body Education Resource Animations should empower patients to make more informed decisions about their own health and wellbeing.

Late last week I spoke to Paula Arnol about IBERA.

Paula Arnol is a Cairns woman with strong family connections to Yarrabah. Ms Arnol is the Chief Executive Officer of the Danila Dilba Biluru Butji Binnilutlum Health Service, the principal Aboriginal Medical Service for Darwin and surrounding areas providing holistic services around the comprehensive primary health care model.

Ms Arnol sits on the boards of the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance of the Northern Territory, which is the State Affiliate body for the 26 Aboriginal Medical Services within NT, Northern Territory Aboriginal Health Forum, the National Indigenous Health Equality Council, which was a council put together after the new Government’s announcement on the Close the Gap policy, the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health, which brings core research and ideas around delivering priorities in Aboriginal health nationally and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation, which is the National representative body for all Aboriginal Medical Services nationally.

If you want to hear the discussion I had with Paula on 98.5 Sonshine FM last week, just click the play button on the audio player at the bottom of this post.


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Today is an incredibly important day in the history of Australia.

This is the apology that will be made to Australia’s Indigenous community in Federal Parliament, Canberra, today.

Today we honour the Indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.

We reflect on their past mistreatment.

We reflect in particular on the mistreatment of those who were stolen generations – this blemished chapter in our nation’s history.

The time has now come for the nation to turn a new page in Australia’s history by righting the wrongs of the past and so moving forward with confidence to the future.

We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians.

We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country.

For the pain, suffering and hurt of these stolen generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry.

To the mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry.

And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.

We the Parliament of Australia respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered as part of the healing of the nation.

For the future we take heart; resolving that this new page in the history of our great continent can now be written.

We today take this first step by acknowledging the past and laying claim to a future that embraces all Australians.

A future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again.

A future where we harness the determination of all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap that lies between us in life expectancy, educational achievement and economic opportunity.

A future where we embrace the possibility of new solutions to enduring problems where old approaches have failed. A future based on mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual responsibility.

A future where all Australians, whatever their origins, are truly equal partners, with equal opportunities and with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter in the history of this great country, Australia.

You can find out more about the apology and the stolen generations by reading the Wikipedia article, Stolen Generation.

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