AILA SA Connection to Country Update

29 November 2021

Many thanks to Jared Barnes for the first eAlert from the SA Connection to Country sub Committee. We are fortunate to have Jared on board to bring his experience and understanding of process and protocols from his time on the National Committee. 

I’ve been thinking about reconciliation and connection to country and what those words mean. 

How does predominately white Australia with its western views reconcile it’s past, present, and future with our First Nations People? How does our modern, multicultural society Connect with Country? Should it be about truth telling, collaborating, re-imagining a shared future and walking the land together?

I would like to share with you three books that have influenced my thinking on this over recent years.

‘Edge of the Sacred, Transformation in Australia’ David Tacey. 
I was introduced to this text at a student conference 25 years ago, W.EDGE on the Western Edge of Australia over the wild, untamed plains from South Australia. Revisiting the Red Centre recently and feeling the spirit of the land in that raw landscape reminded of this book. Its message is even more relevant today. 
Read More

‘Farmers or Hunter Gatherers – the Dark Emu Debate’ Peter Sutton & Keryn Walshe. 
This academic response to Dark Emu poses the question, is farming an appropriate indication of civilisation or is hunter gathering a more challenging but sustainable way of living requiring greater skills?  Read More

‘Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save The World’ Tyson Yunkaporta.  
This entertaining and thought provoking read examines complex and complicated ways of thinking and viewing the world.
Read More 

AILA SA is now a member Reconciliation SA and we look forward to sharing events and developing collaborative ways of working together. Watch this space. Check out the website and all the resources they have –

We hope you can join our Connection to Country Roundtable on Monday 13 December to help shape our program for 2022. Please RSVP via email to [email protected].

We would love to hear what you would like to see in the program and also have a range of ideas to explore with you including;
A ‘Walk and Talk’ at an emerging bi-cultural landscape in McLaren Vale 
Working and collaborating with First Nations on design projects – protocols and governance
Cultural Awareness, Safety and Competency training to build on the programs we have already delivered

Uluru Statement from the Heart 
Let’s hope the Government supports a referendum on a Voice to Parliament and the inclusion of First Nations People in our Constitution. Send a letter to your local MP!

Follow up 
The Connection to Country Committee will see if there are any opportunities to connect with Tyson Yankaporta when he is visiting South Australia in 2022 - 

Paul Harding FAILA