PALS stands for Partnership, Acceptance, Learning & Sharing
The PALS Schools Reconciliation Awards help students learn more about Australia’s Indigenous history and culture and encourage the younger generation to build new relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. These ‘PALS’ are four important ways to ‘make a difference’.
To take part in the PALS Awards, classes need to come up with an idea for a reconciliation project – which can be just about anything – that promotes reconciliation. Some students have recorded their local Aboriginal language, while others built a bush tucker garden, learnt how to use boomerangs and created Indigenous heritage trails in school bushland. Others have established relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.
The Department of Indigenous Affairs (DIA) and BHP Billiton Iron Ore (BHPBIO) came up with this new awards program in 2004 to give young people the chance to make their contribution to reconciliation. To date, over 10,000 West Australian students have been involved. PALS is also supported by the Department of Education and Training.
The DIA and BPHBIO believe young people have the power to make lasting changes to Australian people’s understanding of Indigenous culture and attitudes towards Indigenous people.
The PALS site provides info about Indigenous culture, past projects, reconciliation projects, PALS news, games and quizzes, and has links to other relevant sites.
Prizes are presented in fourth term and entries close September 29. Schools can also apply for a PALS ENRICH Grant to help them create their PALS project. Applications for grants close on April 3rd.
Have YOU been involved in any of these projects?