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During the 2021 Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit, around 450 people (including over 30 Elders) were asked to imagine it was 2029 now. In Creative Spaces they dreamed and made 2029 into being. We studied the Wikipedia categories on the pages for other Australian and Western Australian milestones such as 1929, 1979, 1988 and 2004. We wanted to know what people would want to read on the 2029 Wikipedia Page. Below is a synthesis of what was created and shared during the summit. This is a ‘living document’ that can be iterated and improved on over the coming years to include more voices and more detail. 


This is a first draft of our mock-up wikipedia page - nothing is fixed - we are still processing all the documents from the summit and will continue to listen deeply and walk together to co-shape our future. Together we will collectively [edit], so tell us what’s missing and what needs to change. If you have any suggestions, additions or edits please email us.


"When people ask us what do you want to see in 2029 - we want to see in 2029 what we want to see today...Aboriginal culture is based on now, not forward planning. I don't care what you do with forward planning in any of your meetings - all your forward planning, your forward projections, are done in the moment. We only have two things - the past and now. And that's important in our culture, because what's been that the forward projections have forgot about the past and the now” (Dr Richard Walley OAM).

Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together Towards 2029 and Beyond

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (draft future projection)

Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together Towards 2029 and Beyond, also referred to as Danjoo Koorliny and the 2029 Commemoration, was the official platform for the 2029 bicentennial (200th anniversary) commemoration and recognition of the European colonisation of Western Australia.

Planning [edit]

Planning for Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together Towards 2029 and Beyond began in 2019 at the Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit. Danjoo Koorliny (meaning ‘walking together’ in Noongar) became a movement for systems change and a platform for conversation, so that everyone could collectively shape the future. 


As Professor Emeritus Colleen Hayward AM said during the 2020 Uluru Statement from the Heart Update: “Lots of our conversations are leading those of us in Western Australia to the quite arbitrary date of 2029. 2029 is formally recognised as Western Australia’s bicentennial. And lots of us working in this space - conversing with others, and generally trying to progress things so that there really is social impact and change - recognise that by the time 2029 comes around we want this place to be different. And we want it to be sufficiently different for the state’s bicentennial to be marked by inclusive involvement of all of us, especially first Australians, and that it is not something that is so frustrating and so demeaning that it is marked by only protests.”

In 2019 we began with the season of Makuru (the season of 'fertility'), and in 2020 we moved into the season of Djilba (with the theme of 'incubation'). The whole year following the festival works with the theme set during that festival. In 2021 we met in the season of Kambarang - 'birth'. After the Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact 2021 Summit Dr Noel Nannup stated, "...we birthed Danjoo Koorliny..."

This process was designed by the Kaartdijin Knowledge System Hub of Danjoo Koorliny, combining collective knowledge and experience to ensure we continued to make progress on our journey, grounded in the six-season cycle of this place, so that we didn’t get too far ahead of ourselves.

We mapped out a Danjoo Koorliny bidi pathway to 2029 and beyond which laid out the different stages of the Aboriginal-led journey towards 200 years of colonisation in Western Australia. This image was the visual of our strategy in terms of what we were trying to achieve along the way and the values and the principles that guided us on the path. 


Danjoo Koorliny festival cycle [edit]

Danjoo Koorliny transformed into a year-round project to create the system shifts that we wanted to see. The annual festival gave an opportunity to check the status of, accelerate and amplify the system changes as we walked together towards 2029 and beyond. Each year the festival moved its timing to align with the next Noongar season in the cycle, starting in the season of Makuru in 2019, after which it moved to Djilba in 2020, and so on. The concept of the Noongar six seasons as a project life cycle was also used to guide the Danjoo Koorliny journey over the 10+ years the project operated for. Using the six seasons as a project framework in this way created an annual theme for the events and initiatives occurring within that year, aligned operational and strategic aspects to the longer term project life cycle. 

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Key annual festival events [edit]


Each year the Festival contained a variety of events. There have been four key annual festival events that have formed the skeleton for other festival activities.

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Session: For Aborigional and Torres Strait Islander People only. An opportunity to come together for a discussion about important themes connected to the 2029 and Beyond Vision.

  • Summit: The flagship event of the festival is a two-day journey process held in a conference format. Each year is carefully designed so we can continue our journey of connection to place, be inspired by keynote presentations, and have time to connect, build and evaluate ourselves against the 2029 and Beyond Vision.

  • Elder-leader Briefing: An invitation-only event for senior leaders in business, government and civil society to continue the conversation with Noongar Elders and leaders. The briefing is focussed on ensuring there is a collective understanding of the 2029 and Beyond Vision and how each individual, organisation, institution and sector can contribute towards it.

  • Meeka Moorart Full Moon Ceremony: A special cultural event with dance and song held at Gurnadandulup/ Matilda Bay. It also forms part of our signature project Ni! Bilyada Waanginy Listen! The Rivers and Speaking which involves caring for and healing our waterways.


About Danjoo Koorliny [edit]

Danjoo Koorliny is a complex concept to translate from Noongar into English. One translation could be 'going together to the future', or it could be simply translated as 'walking together'. 


Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together project is a large-scale, long- term, systems-change journey designed and led by Aboriginal leaders to help us all walk together towards 2029 (200 years of colonisation in Perth) and beyond. Danjoo Koorliny is a spirit-led movement of the people. 


“Danjoo Koorliny is a vision. It's our djinda - our collective star to guide us towards 2029. It is the values that we embody. It's the sum of our collective actions that take us to where we need to be in order to create a 2029 we can all be proud of. It belongs to no organisation but hovers above us, and aligns us so that we can care for everything” (Danjoo Koorliny Co-Director Carol Innes).


The founding Co-Directors of Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together are Dr Noel Nannup OAM, Dr Richard Walley OAM, Profesor Emeritus Colleen Hayward AM and Carol Innes. Along the way they invited many others to join the journey including Boodja Portfolio Lead Oral McGuire, and Moort Portfolio Lead Glenda Kickett. They held the space and the platform for many other Elders, community leaders and groups to be able to co-shape our future. The groups included the City of Perth Elders Group and the Telethon Kids Institute Elders. The on-the-ground team began to form in 2021 with Ezra Jacobs-Smith, John Stubley, Katie Stubley, Shenali Perera, Glenda Hickey and grew over the years to enable this 2029 and Beyond Vision.


Danjoo Koorliny is an energy not an entity. It is hosted at the University of Western Australia, an important cultural site on Whadjuk Noongar Land.


The Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Festival has been an annual event that brings us together to see what has shifted in the last year and sets our focus for the years ahead. It created spaces for the collective to co-design, plan and leverage existing planning forums and processes. It worked across many government agencies and peak bodies to support them in their alignment and planning towards 2029 and Beyond, to ensure that we could collectively be proud of how far we had come as a state.


In May 2021 Danjoo Koorliny Leaders and staff were invited to the West Pilbara region of Western Australia to connect with Elders, Leaders and community members through a series of workshops and on-country visits. In keeping with Aboriginal cultural protocols Danjoo Koorliny was translated into Kariyarra – “Wakaku Julu” and Ngarluma – “Wagagu Guma”. 

Ambassadors [edit]

Many Ambassadors and Champions were asked to walk alongside senior Aboriginal leaders. The first four Ambassadors to be asked were the Governor of Western Australia the Honourable Kim Beazley AC, Prof Fiona Stanley AC, Prof Stephen Hopper AC, and Janet Holmes à Court, AC.


During the 2020 Danjoo Koorliny Festival, the Governor said, following his announcement as Danjoo Koorliny Ambassador: “Between now and the bicentennial of European settlement in Perth, 2029, the community has been invited by the Noongar nation on a walk of spiritual unity and respect. We are privileged to share this continent with the oldest civilisation on earth...people who really understand this land where stories and science permeated the emergence of a rich culture which was the heart of their survival. It is now offered to all of us – a spiritual journey which will advance the spirit and character of the whole community. That is worth a celebration.”

And as Professor Fiona Stanley AC said: “I’m very honoured to be a patron...The evidence of a voice and the empowerment or giving control and power to Aboriginal people to make decisions has been shown time and time again in many many different studies. But the most recent one which is overwhelmingly amazing is the First Nations' response to the pandemic of COVID-19, and if ever you needed evidence of Aboriginal control being effective, this is it...this is the best response to the pandemic in the world.”

Partners [edit]

Danjoo Koorliny has always needed to work in deep partnership and relationship across government agencies, peak bodies and other institutions. It’s through alignment and relationship that we created the change that we wanted to see. Our first partner on the journey was Commonland. A Netherlands based organisation that acts as an initiator, catalyst and enabler of large-scale and long-term restoration initiatives. Their belief and trust enabled Danjoo Koorliny to succeed in the early years, which allowed for other partners to come on board in the same way. In 2021, Lotterywest joined as a Major Supporter, it was an important step in being able to walk together to create a better Western Australia. Government Departments began to partner for specific projects related to their domains, Danjoo Koorliny also supported their staff in planning towards 2029 and Beyond through workshops that followed the Bidi Process. Some of the initial partners included Community Partners: Cultural Corridors, WAALI, Reconciliation WA, Noongar Chamber of Commerce and the Noongar Land Enterprise Group. As well as the Department of the Premier and Cabinet; the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development; the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Innovation and Science; the Department of Communities; the Department of Local Government, Sports and Cultural Industries, Sustain; Business Events Perth; AnglicareWA; and the City of Perth. We found creative ways to build relationships including part-time secondments to build the social fabric between organisations, and we worked collaboratively to ensure that people on Aboriginal Advisory Boards, consultants or staff, were also given time to connect to the collective to ensure we were constantly strengthening the whole.

Vision 2029 and Beyond [edit]

"We have our vision set for the next 10 years, and that is to care for everything" (Dr Noel Nannup OAM). 


Listen to Uncle Noel telling the Noongar dreaming story of The Carers of Everything, which underpins the Danjoo Koorliny vision, here


Focus areas have included:

  • Mindset and narrative shift

  • Kaartdijin Knowledge Systems Hub

  • Boodja Land

  • Moort Family and Community

  • Ni! Bilyada Waanginy Listen! The Rivers are Speaking (healing our rivers and waterways)

  • Meeka Moorart Full Moon Ceremonies

  • Songline Energy Maintenance

  • Addressing structural racism



Mindset and narrative shift [edit]

It was recognised that the biggest shifts that we needed to make were in our mindsets and narrative. When people became conscious of the mindsets that were shaping their work and outcomes, they began to shift their hearts and choose to care for everything.

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Ni! Bilyada Waanginy Listen! The Rivers are Speaking (healing our rivers and waterways) [edit]

Healing the river and waterways is one of the signature projects. Because everything is connected we knew that our success in reaching our 2029 and beyond vision would be measured by the health of the river - the Derbarl Yerrigan. We acknowledged the spiritual aspects of and the cultural connections to waterways. We understood that Aboriginal cultural connections infuse the spiritual, emotional and physical. With this understanding we blended cultural and scientific knowledge together. We worked together, healed together, cared for each other and this place to improve the health of our waterways and in exchange, the waterways healed us. 


We acknowledged the interconnectedness of the social, cultural, climate, and economic spaces. This strengthened and aligned our efforts and enabled contributions to the collective progress, so that we all progressed together. Many partners came together to work collaboratively to ensure we have a whole-of-catchment management plan, a cultural interpretation of the river, a comprehensive database, collaborative infrastructure to heal the river, and much more. We looked at two components, surface water and subterranean water (below the ground).


“Water brought them up from the mouth to the Swan River colony. And the settlement from then on is around water, and every township jumped up around water. The train lines went from water hole to water hole, so that what we have today is because of water. And it's been done in the past with no respect for either the water itself, or where it came from, or where it's going. It's seen as a disposable product at your disposition. The sewage systems that have been in existence, the scraping of the river beds, all of those sorts of things become part of the interruption. Because a lot of people want to remember the European farming that happened on the river bed, but forget about how we cared and protected the river, and we still are today. So I guess that's bringing that together - I think that's a very powerful part of that. And utilising the resources for everyone, as opposed to just for yourself or your agency, that's what we've got to think about" (Richard Walley).


We embraced Aboriginal-led approaches to care for our waterways. We recognised that it’s critical for the future of all people in this place that we listen to the spiritual and cultural knowledge of our waterways. We understood the importance of water to create a better future for our children. We knew that water is the sustainer and that we needed better stewardship of our land and river. It was critical to maintain access to rivers for everyone, and housing near rivers for people on low/no incomes.


We needed to listen deeply to our rivers, take a bird’s-eye view and look through historical and cultural lenses. We needed cultural processes and frameworks to lead government initiatives, ensuring that we shift and transform existing approaches from a shared cultural perspective. We connected across silos and ensured governance included decision-makers from across local government agencies. We sought to understand different perspectives, and looked at the river from different angles. We walked together guided by Aboriginal and global knowledge. In 2021 we began to connect with the The Martuwarra Fitzroy River Council and we worked with them to ensure that the rivers remain the lifeblood of our Nation.

Songline Energy Maintenance [edit]

One of the key focus points on the journey towards 2029 and beyond has been caring for the songlines. We used virtual tools to present connected songlines across the landscape. At every point on the journey we acknowledged that Aboriginal people are the authority in their culture and practices.


We had to re-educate, because the Western way insisted on drawing lines and creating borders. On this journey we recognised that no social system or landscape ever exists within straight lines and it became clear that we needed to reactivate the songlines.

We sought to re-established the value of songlines as an ancient and continuing cultural system. We installed sculptures and information at rest stops along all major roads that follow songlines. We provided incentives to freehold land holders to permit access to support the protection and continuity of songlines. We created ‘friends-of’ groups for each songline in order to promote, protect and maintain the sonline, always being led by Aboriginal Custodians in fully remunerated roles. We returned land to the Traditional Owners and Custodians as ‘songline reserves’. We shifted road reserves to become songline reserves, which required extending the purpose of the reserve. Each regional area implemented songline trails. Together we built a shared dreaming that supported us to become balanced and ensured that our knowledge of the power of songlines was no longer abstract. The work of Noel Nannup, Carol Petterson and others was instrumental in caring for the songlines (see


Kaartdijin Systems Knowledge Hub [edit]

The collective fireplace was tended throughout our 10-year journey, and our kaartdijin knowledge grew in order that we could care for everything.


“If we are talking social impact in this place, Aboriginal people have had a blueprint for environmental, cultural and social harmony for over 60,000 years - Noongar country is a hub of environmental, cultural and social harmony - and this is something that can help not just Aboriginal people, but everyone” (Dr Richard Walley).


The Kaartdijin Systems Knowledge Hub is the collection of Danjoo Koorliny co-directors, our leaders, our Eldership, our extended network of knowledge holders who come in and out of the Danjoo collective. It's spirit-led, Wirin-led. It brings together collective knowledge and experience and enables people to step into lead roles, in different portfolios. 


“For us as Aboriginal people, the spirit is in everything. And when you go out there, if you know how to access that spirit, then of course the one within you can then relate to that. And then you accumulate all this experience. And as you accumulate that experience, then you can articulate it to others” (Dr Noel Nannup, Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit 2021).

"And we're all in that collective, trying to guide the path along. So basically that ensures that we're staying on track and we're bringing together people's collective knowledge and experience to make sure we're not making mistakes that may have been made in the past, or we're not redoing work that's already been done. So it really requires us all to contribute to that, to create that tight holding space for ourselves” (Ezra Jacobs-Smith, Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit 2021). 

Story, song, dance and art has been a big part of what has been achieved. This was really important because Danjoo Koorliny wanted people to be feeling and experiencing things more than just in their heads. We all needed to be using our heads, but we needed to be engaging the rest of our bodies and our being, our heart and our spirit, as well in the work that we did. We needed to do it holistically.

Driving systems change: This project has been a systems-change project. Therefore the decisions we made and how we allocated resources was determined through the Elders direction supported through global-best-practice in systems change. Below are some quotes that have guided our systems thinking, how we think about the impact we are creating, and how we are acting as a platform for change.


"How is systems change work different?

  • It addresses root causes rather than symptoms and thus tends to take a multidisciplinary, long-term approach.

  • It aims to solve societal problems with lasting effect, meaning that it works towards a new, stable situation that may make a systems change leader’s work obsolete. It does this by altering, shifting, and transforming a system’s characteristics, ranging from the explicit (policies, practices, and resource flows) to the semi-explicit (relationships and power dynamics), to the implicit (mindsets).

  • It results in different forms of systems change, ranging from adoption by other entities, such as the government, to a mindset shift within society.

  • It may use evolving approaches as systems adapt to disruptions, making it difficult to measure progress and impact in traditional ways.

  • It does not require an organization to scale its work in the traditional sense. As Gugelev and Stern put it, “the scale of an organization […] does not necessarily equal the scale of its impact" (Embracing Complexity: Towards a shared understanding of funding systems change).


Danjoo Koorliny Bidi Process [edit]

Danjoo Koorliny also developed a Walking Together Bidi Pathway process, themed on taking a journey together with others in a particular place. The process moves from meeting others (introductions), planning a journey (seeing together), reflecting in the same way you might the night before you take a journey (reflect), followed by the three stages of the journey - the beginning (first steps), the middle (exploratory steps), and the end (walking together), before the next part of the larger journey begins. It also connects to the six-season cycle, as well as Western co-design and systems-change processes. This process was used over smaller workshops, larger events and the overall journey towards 2029 and beyond (please ask permission before using). 


“Our six-step walking together process, or Danjoo Koorliny process, brings together the six seasons; it brings together co-design and systems change processes, including Theory U. There are more things in there that we will share as we move ahead” (Ezra Jacobs-Smith, 2021 Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit).

Bidi Systems Labs [edit]


The Danjoo Koorliny Bidi Systems Lab processes began in 2022 as multi-year pathways for change. These Bidi Systems Labs provided an interconnected way of operationalising and connecting the change we wanted to see before we reached 2029. They linked all portfolio areas.


The process was informed by the codes and practices of Noongar Boodja combined with the proven methods and practices of social labs which are used globally to solve complex issues (they are based on systems design principles that use Theory U as their process framework).

"Social Labs brings together a diverse group of stakeholders not to create yet more five-year plans but to develop a portfolio of prototype solutions, test those solutions in the real world, use the data to further refine them, and test them again. Their orientation is systemic - they are designed to go beyond dealing with symptoms and parts to get at the root cause of why things are not working” From The Social Labs Revolution.

The labs began in 2022 around the two main themes of Moort Families and Boodja Country. Into these two main labs flowed smaller streams related to those larger themes, such as education, children and families, health etc. in relation to the Moort Families Lab; and such streams as food, fire and water and more in relation to the Boodja Country Lab. All of these labs were held within the Kaartdijin Systems Knowledge Hub.

“You can see a bit of a visual of the Moort lab at the top in the left hand corner, and some of the different streams that are going to flow into that. And then the Boodja lab down in the bottom left corner, and some of those streams. And then those labs will come together in a Caring for Everything lab to make sure that we're always aware of all of the other areas where people are working. 


“What this does is it allows us to go into our silos or our areas of expertise and really hone in on that and develop that really well, but we're always making sure that the silo's operating around a core set of values and principles, and that there's really strong interconnections between them all. 

“And that makes sure that the network of knowledge and the network of the system is really collaborative” (Ezra Jacobs, 2021 Social Impact Summit).

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Boodja Bidi Country Lab [edit]

The Boodja Bidi Country Lab co-design process began in 2019 and was formally shaped at the end of 2021. It was led by Oral McGuire and supported by the Danjoo Koorliny Team. The Bidi process ensured that many key players came together and followed the Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together process. It brought together and amplified the important work happening across the state, including the work of the Noongar Land Enterprise Groups, Gondwana Link (such as their work at Nowanup led by Eugene Eades), Stephen Van Leeuwen’s project on Healing Country, Ranger Programs and many other significant projects.

We put Boodja first. We learned that Country provides for you and to take only what you need. We valued and cared for all of our plants and animals. We embraced cultural burning, supported by science and our shared experience to prevent loss of habitats, biodiversity and lives. We stopped treating land as a commodity as we realised this was not benefiting the collective. We recognised that we needed to decolonise people at all levels within the system and create personal accountability. We began exploring what co-management and genuine collaboration looks like, allowing time for processes to unfold and be supported, sharing power and decision making as moved through this. We planted trees, shrubs, grasses and became familiar with the Noongar boorungur or totems. We always took our lead from Aboriginal knowledge and wisdom and focussed on relationships and trust to make sure our practices were socially and environmentally sustainable.

Moort Bidi Family Lab [edit]


The Moort Bidi Family Lab co-design process began in September 2021. This was driven by a small group of dedicated people facilitated by Glenda Kickett and the Danjoo Koorliny team, along with Dawn Bessarab, Maria Harries, Helen Nys, Barbara Henry, Monique Rampono, which soon grew to a much larger stakeholder group. The Moort Bidi built on the work happening across different areas in Family Safety and Wellbeing (e.g. Noongar Family Safety and Wellbeing Council), justice (e.g. Social Reinvestment WA), housing (e.g. End Homelessness Alliance and Noongar Mia Mia), research (e.g. Ngulluk Koolunga Ngulluk Koort Elder-led Research at Telethon Kids Institute, 100 Families Project, Looking Forward Moving Forward Project), Healing Centres (e.g. Naala Djookan Healing Centre and the Mara Birni Healing Place), Wiyi Yani U Thangani Report (2020), and many other significant projects. We saw long lasting change through this process, as well as important projects launched such as interactive family trees. The six-phase Danjoo Koorliny Bidi process created a framework that aligned and strengthened us. Our Moort Bidi aligned stakeholders from across areas focused on improving family wellbeing, which created energy and momentum for change. 

Impact Measurement Platform [edit]

We strengthened the system by creating relational accountability and collective support for impact measurement through the development of an Impact Measurement Platform. This was a platform or a space for everybody to bring their individual impact commitments to, and share that with the collective. Danjoo Koorliny wasn’t about trying to tell every individual or entity what they should be doing and how they should be doing it, because that's what they know best. Instead the Impact Measurement Platform encouraged them to share with the collective what they were doing in their areas of expertise to change things for the better - to align everyone towards caring for everything as we walked together. Together we built interdependent and relational accountability. The portfolio acted as an Aboriginal-led assessment mechanism across all areas of society and country.

Addressing structural racism and structural un-health [edit]

At the 2021 Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit there were over 30 small group conversations that covered a variety of themes. Across all themes the same structural patterns of racism and unhealth showed up. We identified and named the patterns of structural racism. We recognised that any over-representation of any population in a system is a result of structural racism. Structural racism is also evident when funding, decision-making and representation is used in a way that continues to divide and conquer. Or when situations, institutions or workplaces require Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to assimilate to a Western way of knowing, being and doing.


Letter from the future that sparked a vision towards 2029 and beyond [edit]

A letter was co-created during the Social Impact Summit as part of the 2018 Social Impact Festival. The summit was an opportunity to hear from a number of thought leaders in the social impact space, and to continue co-creating a healthier Western Australia for all. Around 400 people attended the summit over two-days. At the end of the two days, people broke into small groups and drafted a letter from the people of 2028 back to the people of 2018. Around 40 letters were created, and eventually compiled into one letter. Whilst writing the collective letter in 2018, Dr Noel Nannup said: "Well if we've done all of that by 2028 then we will be ready for 2029." Somebody asked, “Why is 2029 important?” From there, Noel asked Katie and John Stubley from the Centre for Social Impact at UWA to ask Dr Richard Walley, Prof Colleen Hayward and Carol Innes if they would join in shaping what was to become Danjoo Koorliny. (Note that the letter has had one addition [italicised]. It was added in October 2021 by Dr Noel Nannup.)

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Danjoo Koorliny principles and protocols [edit]


 Danjoo Koorliny principles [edit]

  • Aboriginal-led and strongly supported by everyone else

  • Cultural governance

  • Strengths-based language

  • Open mind, kind hearts and strong spirits

  • Never underestimate the power of the spirit

  • Shared through story, song, dance and art

  • No one is left behind - everyone can be part of this journey

  • Take responsibility for the change we want to see

  • Trust is built through listening and acting with integrity

  • Co-designing our way forward

  • Love and friendship

  • Aligning to care for everything

  • Constantly linking through dialogue and action

  • Create what we want to see in 2029 now

  • Aboriginal-led to ensure better outcomes for everyone


Danjoo Koorliny protocols [edit]

  • Acknowledge Country wherever you are (In Boorloo Perth - the Whadjuk Noongar People)

  • Respect for everything

  • This journey is led by Aboriginal knowledge and practices, and we acknowledge the system of harmony these created for people living in this place for tens of thousands of years.

  • Dah-ni! (deep listening/meditation)

  • Follow energy not time

  • Always strengthen the collective

  • Acknowledge different ways of knowing, being and doing

  • Knowledge shared within the context of an event or process remains the property of those who have shared it

  • Knowledge is responsibility, not power

  • We are all unlearning and relearning. The process is likely to bring up all kinds of emotions. Hold space for each other

  • Everyone is invited on this journey and they are welcome to join

  • Use good manners and treat people with the respect that you would want to be treated with

  • Recognise the multiple languages in this state. Ensure that language is taught at schools, used in speeches, used in signs. Speak language in service places including hospitals. Language on TV, radio and public announcements

  • Dual naming across Western Australia. (“As far as dual naming goes, you Wadjellas started it. Our places already had names,” [Dr Richard Walley]).

  • Don’t extract information or knowledge for your own benefit. What is co-created by the collective is for the common good of humanity and the planet.

  • Danjoo Koorliny team only travels to places on the invitation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leaders.


Mementos and artefacts [edit]

There are many mementos and artefacts that have been created. These were designed through the Cultural Peak Bodies throughout the state of Western Australia, these were always Aboriginal-led designs, showcasing the milestones achieved as we walked together. Permanent fixtures and learning spaces for cultural events have been unveiled throughout our journey towards 2029.


Public Works [edit]

Major public works focussed on walking together to care for country and families, caring for the songlines, truth telling, the river. It also focussed on public infrastructure that was determined primarily by the needs of Aboriginal people and what they need and want for their community. Wherever you travel, you may see hand and footprints recognising Aboriginal people who have made an impact in their community (these have all been chosen by the community.)


The shifting of our mindsets and systems became a public societal artwork that we celebrated together.

Instead of creating individual installations we created spaces; a trail of creative spaces telling a story. Each massacre site now tells the full story of our history. Elders continued to work with the youth – a process for intergenerational change.

Inspiration was drawn from projects such as Yagan Square, Perth Stadium, Lock Hospitals memorial in Carnarvon, the Wadjemup Rottnest Island Aboriginal Prison Project, Midgegooroo Place renaming in Fremantle, the Scarborough Beach project, Feathers - Wellington square, Boorna Waanginy (trees speak).


Events [edit]

Every year towards 2029 we built the capacity for a meaningful commemoration in 2029. In 2022 we started preparing for 2029 by ensuring we put our focus on caring for country and families, reactivating our songlines, and healing our rivers. We invested in Aboriginal-led arts and production so that by 2029 we had enough localised skills that we did not have to fly anyone in to support the hosting of the events in the lead up to or during 2029. 


We knew that the river would play an important part in all events leading up to and during 2029 and that following the six seasons would be important. In 2019 there were imaginations of giant puppets, light shows, singing back and forth across the river and a massive dance performance with groups from all over the state. These imaginings grew and grew into what we have seen in 2029.


We built on successful events such as Boorna Waagniny, Dreams of Place, Witness Stand, Home, Koolbardi wer Wardong, Fists of Fury, Hecate, Perth Festival events, Noongar Poetry readings, many community-based projects including ones by CANWA such as Place Names and the Noongar Lullabies, the puppet workshops by Karen Hethy, Kobi Morrison’s songwriting and choir conducting including with the Madjitil Moorna Choir and other choir groups.


We spent many years deeply listening to many people, including walking the river with Elders and community to ensure the events throughout the Danjoo Koorliny Walking Together journey and 2029 commemoration year created a deep sense of purpose and belonging for all. We made a space for everyone to contribute their spiritual gift and purpose toward caring for everything. Zoe Atkinson started the engagement process towards shaping the Danjoo Koorliny Events in 2022, and Iain Grandaige in 2025, building on their prior work and commitment to creating change in this place through the arts.

Each event built connections to land and the history of the land. We learned about history through art and yarning, including “stepping through history” as an interactive gallery show. Every year towards 2029 there were more and more circles on different topics - people could move around the space from ‘station’ to ‘station’ learning about aspects of history. There were informal yarning gatherings at local community level, at art centres. There were many dual-naming ceremonies for significant places, areas, and waterways.

In every local government educational experiences were held to connect and immerse people on Country. This happened in the city - and in regional and remote areas.


There were several days of public holidays where we could mourn for what we have lost as a state, as well as to celebrate the resilience of Aboriginal people, the revival of culture, language and cultural protocols. There was a formal recognition ceremony to acknowledge the damage of Boodja Country and Moort Family since Colonisation, and how policies like the 1905 Aborigines Act significantly exacerbated this. We collectively recognised the disruption to our lifestyle from COVID19 and developed a deeper understanding of the impact that 200 years of Colonisation has had on Aboriginal people and country.


Speeches [edit]

Throughout 2029 speeches always began with an Aboriginal person. People asked the community to ensure the right people are on stage. We heard the voices of many Aboriginal people.

The speeches were positive - celebrations of where we come from and what we have achieved. Every speech is infused with truth, healing and care. They spoke for the land – including rivers, waterways, oceans. They followed culture protocols and respect for Country. People were asked to speak from the heart. Places were acknowledged by their first true names.

Speeches represented truth and the vision of cultures involved, and embody genuine co-design. There is sincere representation. Everyone listened to what was said and we never turned our back on what had been created. The speeches demonstrated honesty and collaboration, highlighting the positive social changes for the community, announced achievements, demonstrated cultural humility and bi-partisan support for reconciliation through action. In every speech it was clear that we had created system change. There was representation of all Aboriginal communities and Nations across WA, and they were respectfully acknowledged.

Recognising that people often have English as 2nd/3rd language, the speeches were translated into Aboriginal languages across the state, as well as global languages and Aussign.


Considerations on the journey [edit]


Healing: There was a lot of healing to be done. We asked ourselves, How could we build on the knowledge of healing that has existed here for tens of thousands of years? How could we prepare a creative mental health response to accompany our truth telling so that we didn't end up further in crisis? What healing did I need to do? Did we need to do? What healing did we need to support? We were successful because we asked these important questions.

Truth Telling: Most Western Australians have grown up with an education system, media and society teaching incomplete and often false stories of our history. This has perpetuated and reinforced colonisation. There was a lot of relearning that we needed to do as society about our true history and how we could create a future together. We took a much deeper approach to history and embedded truth telling throughout our education system.As well as hearing the truth we used the mediums of story, song, dance and art to see and feel it.

Decolonising: We asked, How do we decolonise our systems? The colonising process is a dehumanising one - it places highest priority on a few people benefiting at the cost of most (whether it be profit, power etc.). We asked, how do we shift our systems to care for everything? How do we rehumanise them? How do we make decisions that benefit everyone and everything (place, plant, animal and people - credit to Dr Richard Walley).

Constant learning: We knew we would get things wrong. We asked, how could we create a learning environment that was safe, where we were constantly learning, exploring together and growing towards a future we would all be proud of? The most important things are that we continued to lean in, be prepared to be wrong, to stay with - and to always ensure we were strengthening the collective (not re-enacting assimilation or divide and conquer).


Announcements made on the way to 2029 [edit]


  • Albany restores Menang Noongar Place Names

  • City of Perth Elders Sign 'Agreement' with City. “We signed the document, that's what we did...This one - maybe this is going to make a difference in the way we live together. So we won't walk in single file anymore. We will walk side by side. This is our country: we invited you here, and we will share with you. And we've done that for many years” (Dr Margaret Culbong, 2021 Danjoo Koorliny Social Impact Summit).

  • #Raisetheage campaign successful

  • Songline Energy Maintenance Project announced and implemented

  • Aboriginal Family-led decision making 

  • Aboriginal rangers across the state (well funded), including on Noongar Boodja (River Rangers)

  • WA car licence plate becomes ‘Carers of Everything’

  • Country acknowledged on birth certificates as place of birth

  • Whole-of-Catchment management plans in place across the state

  • Cultural Centre Opens

  • Education curriculum rewritten to include Truth Telling, Aboriginal culture, Aboriginal knowledge systems and perspectives along with multiple ways of knowing, being and doing. 

  • STEM changed to STEAM to include Arts

  • The cultural, social and environmental literacy of the general population has improved by 80%

  • Mental health facility opened on country with majority Aboriginal staff

  • We are on track across Noongar Boodja for the UN Decade of Restoration. We are a global leading example.

  • Holistic health care facility based on Aboriginal culture opened for Aboriginal and mainstream patients

  • Financial recognition of cultural and community work by Elders

  • 26th January no longer Australia Day

  • Celebration of ONE DAY in all councils

  • Noongar anthem played alongside Australian anthem at any Boorloo Perth events

  • Duam Naming for Cities and towns in Southwest WA

  • Perth Stadium renamed Whadjuk Stadium

  • All AIEO’s formally recognised as qualified teachers

  • Summer long weekend changed to Birak Festival in Boorloo/ Perth

  • Noongar language taught in kindy/ pre-primary in South West of WA

  • Noongar language mandatory in all schools in the South West of WA

  • Local Aboriginal languages taught in all Schools across WA 

  • Aboriginal teachers in every school

  • All major companies have an elevate RAP

  • WA university appoints first Aboriginal Co-Vice chancellors

  • APLO roles restored

  • All colonial statues to have Aboriginal one alongside or to be pulled down and archive

  • Ongoing arts funding for interactive storytelling plays to tell the history

  • Wadjemup Rottnest Aboriginal prison memorial opens

  • Aboriginal family-led decision making embedded in legislation and practice

  • More Indigenous people in public sector roles and at higher levels

  • Aboriginal person announced as Governor

  • Programs grow and mentor youth to be leaders

  • Aboriginal lectures teaching culture throughout all disciplines, not just content but also processes/pedagogy 

  • All major engineering projects incorporate Aboriginal knowledge, design, perspectives

  • Aboriginal language on news, ads, everywhere to teach everyone

  • RAP plans no longer required (Aboriginal culture now valued intrinsically by organisation)

  • Elders paid a salary by government to maintain cultural knowledge 

  • Senior Aboriginal leaders in cabinet, corporate boards, advocacy groups, chambers etc. 

  • All Paths Lead to Home Strategy Successful

  • We are united as one


Publications [edit]

For the lead-in to 2029 it was recognised that written publications were not going to be the most impactful. We explored a variety of mediums from artworks, video, VR, pod-casts, performances, public experiences and more. We always ensured accessibility of knowledge through pictures and stories. We invested heavily in capturing the oral history of this place. We thought about how we could publish country. We always ensured cultural knowledge was not extracted but belonged to the people who have shared it. Stories must be used respectfully, with ongoing informed consent. This helped us to embed to sharing and caring as part of our collective culture.

We knew that it would be important to use all mediums to help the public imagine this place 10 years before the bicentenary of colonisation and give them an opportunity to fall in love with the landscape and wisdom of this place.

We considered the purpose of each publication and how they connected people through heart, mind and spirit. We knew that the purpose of each publication was for transformational change. We ensured the right protocols for who publishes and who benefits from the sales of publications. We layered knowledge – bit by bit. And we ensured that knowledge was not shared in an extractive way but to increase understanding and public responsibility. We protected Indigenous intellectual and cultural property.

We invested in hosting more conversations and less publications. We weighed up publication and human interaction. We thought closely about how two-way learning could happen and how we could increase human connection.

We amplified Aboriginal voices so the public came to know their lived experience. We created spaces in our organisations for storytelling and reflection.


We built knowledge in layers so that it was digestible information to meet people where they were. We had truth telling at the start of all our documents - in every part of every narrative. We ensured that there was data sovereignty and that we included Aboriginal voices and knowledge from inception to publication co-creation. We recognised that meaningful engagement of voices takes resources and time. We created spaces that were accessible for Aboriginal authors and always made sure that publications were Aboriginal led. All publications emerged from a safe space of two-way sharing, listening, and learning.


See also [edit]

Aboriginal (Noongar) interpretation of history

200 Years of Colonisation in Western Australia

Truth-telling, legalised killing, resiliency, forgiveness
Song, dance, stories, art, history

History, achievements, current, future

History, legislation, colonisation Act 1905


Sporting teams

Celebration of culture; 

Explanation of Noongar language groups


Defence of Australian Noongar serviceman

Why is it important? What’s in it for us all?

This isn’t about giving up who we are, but learning from old and deep knowledge

How life was prior to invasion

Seasons - plus dreaming stories of important things i.e. universe/ astrology from Noongar view

Cultural, social and environmental literacy

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