GREY skies Thursday, January 25 did not deter the community coming together for a special survival day breakfast organised by Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-Operative to reflect on more than 250 years of white colonisation.
The area known as Rumbalara has a rich traditional history spanning thousands of years. The contemporary history of Rumbalara began in the 1940s on the river flats between Shepparton and Mooroopna, following the Cummeragunja Walk-Off. In 1980, the community established the Co-Operative as a hub for Indigenous gatherings. Additionally, it serves as a platform for education, information dissemination, and support in crucial areas like health, housing, welfare and culture.
For First Nations people, January 26 marks the invasion of British settlers in 1770. Invasion Day events acknowledge this and the resistance and survival of Indigenous people in the face of systematic and ongoing injustice and denial of rights.
This was the first event of its kind organised by Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-Operative, and with more than 50 people in attendance, the event was a resounding success.
Michael Bourke led a smoking ceremony and Welcome to Country at the Harmony Building, which was followed by a minute’s silence as attendees reflected on the history of colonisation and its impact on Indigenous people past, present and emerging.