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How did it start?

 

Photo: The first National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day held on August 4 1988 was led by community for community.

 

In 1988, the first National Aboriginal and Islander Children’s Day (NAICD) was established on August 4 and was set against the backdrop of protests led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their supporters during the bicentennial year. A day was needed to celebrate our children, to give them confidence and make them feel special and included. With so many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in orphanages and institutions many children did not know their own birthday – one day was set aside each year to celebrate a communal birthday.

Children’s Day has grown every year, becoming a major event in the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, families and community organisations. In communities throughout Australia this special day has been celebrated with activities including open days, arts and crafts, storytelling, face painting, concerts, morning teas, community BBQs and so much more. SNAICC organises a national launch for Children’s Day, held at a different location each year.

Every year the wider community has increasingly taken the lead in celebrating Children’s Day with amazing and diverse celebrations across the country. Each year SNAICC produces and distributes resources to help local communities and organisations celebrate the day. In 2017, SNAICC distributed over 15,000 Children’s Day bags and other resources to support over 540 community events across Australia.