Saturday, September 23, 2006

Aboriginal People Shine at Olympic Games, and Then are Forgotten

Make Indigenous Poverty History, says Rachelle McIvor

Rachelle McIvor from Hopevale Aboriginal Community, Cape York, Queensland in Australia dreams of the day when every Aboriginal person will be proud of their identity and culture.

"The representation and involvement of indigenous culture at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, came to the fore from the time Sydney had bid for the Games, to the staging of the first Olympic Arts Festival," said Rachelle. "The festival was an attractive event in the cultural life of indigenous and mainstream Australia, giving indigenous Australians an opportunity to present themselves."

She notes, "However this was just one event, the celebration, the government's show for the world. The everyday life for Aboriginal people is different. We are not a part of national culture."

It is important for her to promote aboriginal culture, to make mainstream society inclusive. "If being Aboriginal a is not a positive thing in Australia, our kids can't be proud And it's not about creating a new contemporary Indigenous culture in Australia, but about finding a new way of being together (indigenous and non-indigenous Australian) in this nation.

Rachelle is involved in raising awareness about poverty among the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Ecumenical Commission. The country's Make Indigenous Poverty History campaign is one of that group's projects. It seeks to ensure the global campaign supporting the Millennium Development Goals does not overlook the poverty suffered by indigenous peoples in Australia.

"This campaign differs from the global campaign because we are losing our culture and it's about not having access to things mainstream society takes for granted," noted Rachelle.

She cites Australia's key economic indicators showing that Australia's indigenous peoples are living in poverty, their children are twice as likely to die in infancy, they suffer from more preventable diseases, have higher unemployment, lower housing ownership, lower engagement with education and are six times as likely to be murdered.

Poverty is a debilitating experience for many of her people but Rachelle is aware that without the meaningful participation of indigenous people this marginalization and exclusion will continue.

"We have reached the crossroads and now we, the Aboriginal Australian people have to decide what future they want for their kids. Is it the one shaped by the legal system of Australia or that based on Aboriginal traditional values."

Les aborigènes brillent aux Jeux olympiques et ensuite tombent dans l'oubli

Du point de vue de
Rachelle McIvor, du Queensland, les aborigènes ont été impliqués et visibles autour de l'événement des Jeux olympiques de Sydney de l'an 2000. "Mais cela n'était qu'un événement, la vitrine du gouvernement pour le monde. La vie quotidienne des aborigènes est très différente. Nous ne faisons pas partie de la culture nationale."

La jeune femme est engagée dans la campagne "Que la pauvreté des aborigènes ne soit plus que de l'histoire ancienne" qui s'assure que les Objectifs du Millénaire de l'ONU ne soient pas mis de côté en Australie, concernant son peuple. Les indicateurs de la pauvreté des aborigènes sont particulièrement nombreux : d'une mortalité infantile double de la moyenne du pays à un taux de chômage particulièrement élevé.

"Nous avons maintenant atteint un croisement et les aborigènes d'Australie doivent choisir quel avenir ils veulent pour leurs enfants. Un avenir formé sur le système légal ausralien, ou un avenir basé sur les valeurs traditionnelles aborigènes."

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home