Welcome to our Reconciliation Journey
This page documents CCSA’s commitment to reconciliation.
We recognise and respect the First Peoples of this land, acknowledge the past injustices and the ongoing inequalities experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples since colonisation, and are committed to working towards a more equal and respectful future.
We acknowledge that reconciliation is an ongoing journey and we will use this space to record and celebrate our activities and milestones, and keep our members and the wider community updated as we move forward in our commitment to working towards reconciliation.
A highlight of our 50th birthday celebration was working with Leanne Tobin, a local Darug artist, to create Ngalawa Gundungurra Daruganora (Sitting on Gundungurra and Darug Land) – 2019.
This story acknowledges the location: the Blue Mountains, with the outer edges depicting stencils of local plants. The centre of the painting features the Seven Sisters and Katoomba’s famous Three Sisters; an ancestral story widely known throughout Australia. The handprints are those of CCSA workers and guests, layered and merging, forming the escarpment.
The ‘Seven Sisters’ are surrounded by concentric circles. These circles represent the many rural, remote, regional and metropolitan communities that CCSA assists in working and collaborating with each other. Their interconnections provide support and the sharing of experience, knowledge and resources.
Watch this video to hear CCSA CEO, Meg Mendham, talking in 2018 about the beginnings of our reconciliation journey.
Rural and Remote Forums
The annual CCSA Rural and Remote Forum brings together services from regional areas to give them a stronger voice and to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of early education and care in these very special locations.
The Forums are an opportunity to share local cultural experiences in the areas they are held. We acknowledge traditional owners through the Welcome to Country, visit local services and hear from local storytellers.
Our Forums provide a platform to hear the first-hand experiences of professionals working in rural and remote areas, and our guest speakers offer important learning on providing quality early childhood education to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.
When organising these events we partner with local indigenous organisations and providers, and offer a platform for exhibitors to showcase their organisations and products.
CCSA recognises the Dharug and Gundungurra Traditional Owners of the land on which our Katoomba office is located.
We have developed strong relationships with local families and elders, and appreciate their contribution to our organisation and to our continuing journey towards cultural and historical understanding and reconciliation.
We continue to work to ensure that Traditional Owners and the local Blue Mountains Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community are represented and involved in our events and activities including staff planning days, Board meetings, Annual General Meetings, our Rural and Remote Forum and other special events and celebrations.
CCSA has a long history of advocating for improved access to quality early childhood education and care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. We work with SNAICC – National Voice for our Children, and have had representation on ATSIECSAG, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Early Childhood Sector Advisory Group. Wherever possible we partner with local indigenous organisations and providers when presenting our workshops and Forums, and provide a platform for exhibitors to showcase their organisations and products.
In 2017 CCSA and the NSW Department of Education collaborated to establish a preschool at Weilmoringle in remote far-north NSW. From day one we focused on community engagement, creating a Working Group made up of key community members and family members, and just 9 months later the preschool opened to it’s first children.
Since our establishment as the Country Preschools Association in 1969 our membership has grown and extended and now, as CCSA, we represent and support all service types, from all locations. We provide support to assist all of our members to provide culturally inclusive and sensitive early childhood education and care through our resources and Infoline, training and development opportunities and consultations.
Go to our Connections Magazines for stories highlighting the achievements of our member services in their own journeys towards reconciliation.
Our Journey continues
Together we acknowledge the contributions of the traditional custodians of this land. We acknowledge the contribution of Aboriginal Australians, Torres Strait Islander peoples, and non‑Aboriginal Australians to the education and care of all children and people in this country in which we live in and share