Skip to Main Content

Sharing stories and knowledge to celebrate National Reconciliation Week 2023

NRW event - Lee Crockford hosting

Above: Foundation board director and event host, Lee Crockford

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Foundation’s National Reconciliation Week (NRW) celebration yesterday. It was inspiring to have so many partners and stakeholders come together in-person and online to listen to – and hear – the diverse stories and experiences shared so generously by our First Nations guests.

Hosted by Foundation board director Lee Crockford along with the Foundation’s Director, Prevention, Sharin Milner, the event reflected this year's NRW theme, Be a voice for generations.

NRW2023 event - presenters on stage

L-R: Lee Crockford, Rodney Jackson, Uncle Tony Garvey, Phil Usher, and Sharin Milner.

Uncle Tony Garvey, a Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Elder, delivered a heart-felt Welcome to Country and was followed by Rodney Jackson, First Nations Consultant and Reconciliation Expert Advisor to the Foundation, who spoke about the importance of listening and working together to achieve better outcomes for First Nations people.

NRW2023 event - Uncle Tony Garvey and Rod Jackson

Above: Uncle Tony Garvey and Rod Jackson

We were privileged to have Cherie Minniecon join the event online. Cherie is a proud Yorta Yorta woman, social worker, educator and futures strategist who, through her words and photographs, gave us a very personal account of her family’s history and the role of storytelling across generations.

NRW2023 event - Cherie Minniecon presenting

Above: Cherie Minniecon joining via Zoom

Phil Usher, a Wiradjuri and Gameroi man and CEO of the First Nations Foundation, provided insights into the work his organisation does to support financial literacy among First Nations people. His team’s approach begins by exploring a person’s connection to Country and their family relationships before focusing on money management. Identifying priorities and then budgeting without deprivation is a key concept. For example, value is gained by discontinuing unused subscriptions and putting the funds saved towards those priorities.

Finally, award-winning rapper and hip-hop sensation Philly took to the stage to share some anecdotes about his life growing up in Mildura and give a stirring performance of Yil Lull from the Deadly Hearts album.

NRW2023 event - Philly performing

Above: Award-winning rapper and hip-hop sensation, Philly performing Yil Lull.

We thank all our guest speakers for sharing their knowledge and experiences with us. The Foundation is committed to amplifying the voices of First Nations people and strengthening relationships across our communities through culturally safe interactions that promote reconciliation and self-determination.

To find out more about the Foundation’s First Nations Gambling Awareness Program, visit

Back to top