Aspire4Life team members donate 200 books for Coraki kids

Aspire4Life acknowledges all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples as First Nations people and custodians of the Oldest living culture. We recognise their continuing connection to land, waterways, seas and community. We pay respect to their Elders, past and present and are committed to working towards a future with reconciliation and renewal in everything we do.

The 2022 theme for National Reconciliation Week was ‘Be Brave. Make Change.’ and encouraged all Australians to take action towards reconciliation in our daily lives. 

It’s a timely reminder that through increasing people’s sense of connection and belonging, conversations can play an important part in healing intergenerational trauma.

As part of our reconciliation efforts, we spoke with Keiren Freeman, one of our wonderful Regional Assessment Service assessors, about what we could do to contribute to positive change in local communities.

Keiren grew up and lives on Birpai Country, and her mum’s side of the family is from Bruny Island, Tasmania. Through her strong connections to community, Keiren knew that local schools were struggling from recent natural disasters, including fires
and floods.

“Classrooms have been devastated recently. They have lost all their resources, including entire school libraries,” Keiren shared. “Some schools have a high Indigenous population and could do with support in rebuilding their resources.

“As we had over 200 people coming from all over Australia to the Aspire4Life conference, I thought – why don’t we ask them all to bring a book that would be suitable for primary school children?”

Knowledge is power

Keiren planned to donate the books to a local school on Bundjalung Nation that had been devastated by the recent flooding.

All team members got behind the project, gathering over 200 books to the local Primary School at Coraki.

“My grandfather was part of the Stolen Generation, and I grew up with him always saying – “If you can read a book, you will never be lonely,” Keiren shared.

“He spent a lot of time by himself, and the importance of reading was something he always put into my mind. He believed that knowledge is power, and that by reading and researching, you could build up your power and influence you to make informed

Making change

Aspire4Life team members were thrilled to take part in the project, enjoying the process of picking out books that the primary school students would like.

Many had grown-up children of their own, and were excited by the opportunity to go back and revisit the books of their childhoods, or rediscover old favourites.

And there were some beautiful gestures shared along the way; such as one team member who asked a book shop in Sydney for recommendations, only for the book shop to donate a stack of books to the cause.

“We were really touched, some book shops have been doing it tough with people shopping online but it was such a beautiful thing for them to do,” added Keiren.

“It was so wonderful to see everyone so dedicated to the project, and we were so proud to deliver the boxes of books directly to the school.”

School principal Lyn Parker was very pleased to receive the books to add to the school library. Aspire4Life were also given a tour of the school, and we were proud to be able to witness the beautiful way our next generation are being nurtured through
Positive Behaviour for Learning.

We remain dedicated to advancing reconciliation and driving societal change and look forward to continuing to “be brave and make change”.
To find out more about Aspire4Life, click here.