New recruits welcomed at Kangaroo Island AFL Indigenous Round

As National Reconciliation Week approaches, the KI Football League celebrated its Indigenous Round on Saturday.

A smoking ceremony was held at Penneshaw before the A grade clash between Dudley United and Wisanger.

As an integral part of the celebration, the field umpires wore shirts displaying Year 10 student, Lucas Doyle's art piece and each club received his beanies, awarded to the player who showed the meaning of working together.

Proud Ramindjeri/Ngarrindjeri man Mark Koolmatrie was the league's special guest, performing the Welcome to Country in language and a traditional smoking ceremony as the A grade teams stood silent in respect of Aboriginal culture and walking together in harmony.

On the field were the Eagles' five star Indigenous recruits from the Clontarf Foundation, who have come down from the Northern Territory to live, work and play footy on KI.

Mr Koolmatrie is no stranger to KI having worked closely with Becky Westbrook on her recently published book, "Evie and the Bushfires". And he has also offered his Kool Tours experiences with Lifetime Retreats.

He meandered through the crowd talking about his culture and connecting with the Clontarf lads from Tennant Creek.

A consolidating aspect was KICE students displaying their artworks in the Penneshaw Hall and discussions of more school and community activities and events which will follow throughout the coming weeks and during 2021.

Mr Koolmatrie's message was "Together we matter".


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