This NAIDOC Week 2024, we honour and acknowledge the theme ‘Keep the Fire Burning! Blak, Loud & Proud’. This celebrates the enduring strength and vitality of First Nations culture – with fire symbolising connection to Country, to each other and to the rich tapestry of traditions that define Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

As the oldest continuing culture on the planet, Australia’s First Nations Peoples have used fire for cultural and land management purposes for millennia. Fire connects its peoples to Country and supports healing of the mind and body. It is used ceremoniously for storytelling and singing and is integral to the knowledge-sharing process.

Much like the mission of Orange Sky, fire brings people together. Connection to Country is a vital aspect of our 13 remote services, spanning across QLD, NT and WA. Each week, local staff don their orange shirts, providing a reliable and open space to connect and yarn together on our six orange chairs.

Our service can be likened to a fire, with its foundations built by our supporters, volunteers and HQ team. Our washing machines act as the fuel that powers our service but the conversations are what truly fan the flame.

Our Program Manager of Remote Services Judith Meiklejohn, reflects on our remote service as a fire that nurtures communities. “We connect directly with all our services at least weekly. It’s about nurturing our teams, assets, partnerships and communities in order for them to continue to burn, establish trust and create sustainable change in their local communities.”

Beyond our shifts, Orange Sky employees will be actively engaging with NAIDOC Week in 2024 by sharing information aimed at educating and fostering personal growth. We will encourage team members to participate in local events, supporting and immersing themselves in the cultural celebrations. Additionally, our First Australians Book Club will feature discussions on “The Dreaming Path,” exploring its themes in depth. Employees will also engage with music, arts, and entertainment related to NAIDOC Week, ensuring a comprehensive and enriching experience that honours, celebrates and keeps the flame alight on the rich heritage of Indigenous Australians.

We acknowledge and celebrate those who keep the flames burning and the cultural heritage that enriches our nation. Through our collective efforts, we can forge a future where the stories, traditions and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are cherished and celebrated, enriching the fabric of the nation with the oldest living culture in the world. 

To learn more about our work in remote communities, head to – Orange Sky Remote.