ABORIGINAL Elder Allan Kickett says the Town of Bassendean’s Danjoo Koorliny Reconciliation Gathering has brought “hope and harmony” to the community.
Danjoo Koorliny coincided with National Reconciliation Week, which reflected on the 1967 referendum and historic Mabo decision.
Mr Kickett addressed a 150-strong audience on May 25 at Mary Crescent Reserve, which included councillors Gerry Pule and Paul Bridges, Bassen-dean MLA Dave Kelly and primary school students.
The annual event featured tree planting and performances by the Maar Koodjal Aboriginal Dance Group, Jayden Ahmat, Madjitil Mooma singers and Delta Oui.
Mr Kickett, the oldest living patriarch of the Kickett family, said people came together as one at the event.
“We were in a sheltered environment for nine years… I lost my identity, I became alienated,” he said.
“We did not have any hope in this world of receiving any justice and we are hoping all this is going to change.
“I took a change in my life, I found my niche at the age of 49… I was able to think for myself and not rely on government institutions for my survival.
“I found real harmony in myself and good people and I wanted to lend a helping hand like the Town of Bassendean done with this gathering.”
Cr Pule said Mary Crescent Reserve was a registered cultural heritage site which had been significant across countless generations.