This week, many of us are reflecting on NAIDOC Week, a week to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In 2022, the theme for NAIDOC Week is Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! for change. It’s a time to progress efforts in calling out racism, encouraging cultural and heritage protection, and most importantly, listening to stories from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Jasmine Walsh is one of the amazing Indigenous women at BG&E and we are delighted to share her story.
“My name Jasmine Walsh and I am a proud Balladong/Badimiya woman from the wheatbelt and the midwest, in regional Western Australia (WA). I am training to become a Project Administrator at BG&E.
“For me, NAIDOC Week means learning more about other First Nations peoples. I usually take the time to explore art exhibitions that have been created by talented Elders and emerging First Nations artists, and this is special to me, as my grandfather was an artist before he passed away and my grandmother is also an artist.”
Jasmine has fond memories of when she was a child, and saw her grandparent’s art and listened to them tell their stories through their art. She recalls it being a very special time and today, she continues to cherish those memories, in particular, when she returns to her Badimiya country.
Jasmine adds, “Every opportunity that I have to share stories about my history, who I am and where I came from, I take it and I take great pride in doing so.
“I never had an opportunity to sing in my native language or go to ceremonies, but I did get to see my great grandmother dance and sing in her language before she had passed. My grandmother, on my Balladong side, teaches me how to speak in our language and it’s inspirational.
“Being a Badimiya woman, I also learn from my father, my uncles, and brothers, how to live off the land, from finding food to make our own medicines, among other things.”
In closing Jasmine says, “I am proud of my heritage and my identity, and I look forward to teaching future generations and my peers to embrace Indigenous Australians and contribute to reconciliation. It is important to celebrate NAIDOC Week, as it is an opportunity for all Australians to understand our culture and work together for a better Australia.”