Honouring Elders NAIDOC Week 2023
National NAIDOC Week will take place between 2 to 9 July, celebrating and recognising the history, culture and many achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
The National NAIDOC Week theme for 2023 is For Our Elders, paying special homage to the Elders who have passed away and to those who continue advocating for First Nations peoples.
The theme acknowledges that across every generation, Elders have played, and continue to have, a quintessential role and hold an exceptional place among communities and families.
Aboriginal Elders are cultural knowledge holders, trailblazers, nurturers, advocates, teachers, survivors, leaders, hard workers and loved ones.
Vigour can be drawn from Elders’ knowledge and experience, in everything from land management, cultural knowledge to justice and human rights. This is demonstrated across multiple sectors such as health, education, the arts, politics and more.
2023 NAIDOC Week educational resources
National NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories, and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth.
For National NAIDOC Week there is a range of educational resources that can be used in your classroom to attain foundational knowledge about National NAIDOC Week, the history of themes since 1972, and the focus cities for the National NAIDOC Awards.
The teaching ideas developed by the National NAIDOC Committee directly support teachers in addressing the Australian Curriculum, which includes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and culture. Content can be used across multiple learning areas and year levels from kindergarten to Year 12.
2023 NAIDOC Week poster winner
The winner of the 2023 National NAIDOC Week poster competition is Bobbi Lockyer, a proud Ngarluma, Kariyarra, Nyulnyul and Yawuru artist.
Born and based on Kariyarra Country in Port Hedland, Ms Lockyer’s art is not defined by usual means. Instead, she provides an insight into her creative heart and soul through an array of different mediums. These mediums include Aboriginal art, fine art paintings, photography, illustration and digital design.
“As an artist I find art healing, when I sit down with a canvas and some paints I’m able to connect with my ancestors and my culture and feel a sense of self-healing and there’s just something so calming about creating. When I create, it’s like a whole other world,” Ms Lockyer said.
“With this year’s poster design, I really just wanted to honour all our Elders and I started sketching straight away thinking who could I put on this poster, but then I realised I didn’t want to just put a specific Elder because all our Elders are equally important and are integral to our lives.”
The National NAIDOC poster competition has a rich and significant history, beginning in 1967 when the National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) first began producing posters.
Each year to reflect the National NAIDOC Week theme, the National NAIDOC Week poster competition encourages Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists aged 13 years and over to submit their artwork.
Ms Lockyer will receive a $10,000 cash prize and attend the 2023 National NAIDOC Awards Ceremony in Meanjin (Brisbane) on 1 July as a guest of the National NAIDOC Committee.