The Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation was established in 1991 with the vision: ‘A united Australia which respects this land of ours; values the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander heritage; and provides justice and equity for all’. In October 1992 the Council acknowledged the community-wide commitment needed to achieve reconciliation, stating that ‘the process involves all of us walking together to find a better path to the future of this nation’.
On 28 May 2000 more than 250,000 people, including politicians, public figures and members of the Stolen Generations, walked across Sydney Harbour Bridge in a show of support for the reconciliation process. The Bridge walk was followed by other walks in cities and towns across the country, involving almost one million people in total.
The donor of this badge, Lawrence Ben, writes:
I wore my badge when I was eight years old at the Adelaide National
Reconciliation March in 2000. I marched with a crowd of thousands from
Adelaide Oval and then congregated at Victoria Square where Yothu
Yindi played a concert. I can still
remember standing knee-height alongside other supporters and feeling
so small amongst the crowd. I also
have strong memories of the smells of kangaroo meat cooking on
open fire, the sounds of my first real live concert and colours of the
many banners and signs.
My parents always brought me up with a strong
sense of social justice and respect for others; joining in this march
and wearing my badge on this occasion was the first time that I felt
part of a large-scale movement committed to these ideals. Memories
from that day remain very powerful because they still serve to inspire
today, especially in my studies. Although I have grown older and
taller, my ‘Corroboree 2000’ badge still ignites strong memories that I
carry with me today.