During COVID-19, Archie Roach, AM and 2020 Victorian of the Year, gathered Stolen Generations Elders from around the country to develop critically needed resources for educators: The Archie Roach Stolen Generations Educational Resources, freely available on ABC Education.
First Nations Curriculum writers from Culture is Life in collaboration with the Archie Roach Foundation have produced this legacy project to educate all Australians. Inspired by Archie’s songs, Stolen Generations survivors talk about the intergenerational impacts of forced removal, experienced to this day, and the healing power of Archie’s music.
The Archie Roach Stolen Generations Resources includes filmed conversations with Archie and the Elders around the themes of Cultural Identity, Stolen Generations, Talking Our Truths, and Healing Through Story and The Arts, with comprehensive educational support materials.
Its release coincides with the publication by Simon & Schuster of a picture-book edition of Archie’s iconic song Took The Children Away, with evocative illustrations by Archie’s late partner and musical collaborator Ruby Hunter, also a Stolen Generations survivor.
Archie’s haunting autobiographical song forever changed the national narrative of our country. His 1990 multi-award-winning debut album, Charcoal Lane, celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.
‘This song is so important to me because it’s part of my healing. It was the only way I could release the trauma of being removed from my family, to get it out,’ explains Archie.
‘Young people need to understand that the Stolen Generations is an Australian story; it’s part of their history as well and not just the history of First Nations people, but all our history, all our story. It’s the only way we can move on in this country.’
Belinda Duarte, Culture is Life CEO, says: ‘The first steps in healing include knowing the truth and understanding the intergenerational impact of Stolen Generations on the wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and young people nationally. We are honoured to stand with Uncle Archie and his Foundation to ensure the true history of this country is told, in particular that of Stolen Generations.’
A young adult edition of Archie’s award-winning memoir, Tell Me Why including reflections from Elders and young people, will be an important addition to The Archie Roach Stolen Generations Educational Resources. Tell Me Why for Young Adults will be published in March 2021 by Simon & Schuster.
Archie says: ‘My hope is to see my books in every school and library around the country so that our young people can hear and read our stories, our history and our culture as told by us.’
Grateful thanks to:
The Elders: Uncle Archie Roach (Gunditjmara/Bundjalung), Aunty Lorraine Peeters (Weilwun/Gamilaroi), Aunty Eva Jo Edwards (Boonwurrung/Mutti Mutti/Yorta Yorta), Uncle Syd Jackson (Wongai/raised on Noongar Country), Uncle Jack Charles (Boonwurrung/DjaDjaWurrung), Aunty Iris Bysouth (Barkindji)
The Organisations: Cootamundra Girls Home (NSW), Connecting Home (Victorian Stolen Generations Services)
Culture is Life’s First Nations Curriculum writers: Thara Brown, Shelley Ware, Belinda Duarte
For more information about the Resources please contact:
The Archie Roach Foundation: Jill Shelton, firstname.lastname@example.org
Culture is Life: Thara Brown, email@example.com
For all media enquires contact:
Anna O’Grady, firstname.lastname@example.org