NAIDOC Week With Samantha Harris

NAIDOC Week is an essential time to celebrate and honour the rich history, culture, and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Join us for a candid conversation with Samantha Harris, a prominent Indigenous Australian model and advocate, in honour of NAIDOC Week. In this interview, Samantha shares her personal connection to this significant occasion and the profound meaning it holds for her, as well as her hopes for positive changes in recognition, representation, and the celebration of Indigenous peoples' contributions to Australian society.

Can you share with us your personal connection to NAIDOC Week and what it means to you? 

NAIDOC means to me celebrating the indigenous culture in all shapes and form and how far we have come as a culture and continue to grow.

As a prominent Indigenous model, how do you feel your platform has contributed to raising awareness about NAIDOC Week and Indigenous culture in general?

I love being able to share on my socials about new indigenous brands, raising awareness for important topics within the community, and overall just being proud of all the wonderful things our people are achieving.

NAIDOC Week is a time to celebrate the history, culture, and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. What are some of the key messages or stories that you think need to be highlighted during this important week?

There are so many things that can be highlighted during the week. I personally love being able to share how special our culture is in NAIDOC week. There are always fun activities to do or attend like the NAIDOC Ball, or there’s always pop up shops around. Always something going where you can learn about indigenous culture or just catch up and connect with family.

In your opinion, how can the beauty, fashion and modelling industry better support and promote Indigenous designers, artists, and creatives during NAIDOC Week and beyond?

This year Ngali had its first stand alone runway show at Sydney Fashion Week, which was very exciting! Also the Indigenous Fashion Projects Runway Show which I walk in every year - they showcase up and coming indigenous designers and there are so many more beautiful indigenous faces on the runway these days which I’m so proud of.

Can you share any personal experiences or moments during NAIDOC Week that have been particularly impactful or memorable for you?

I have memories of when I was younger. I’m from Tweed Heads and on the weekend there was a day in Arkinstall Park which was a great day for the kids. Games, face painting, and we had a BBQ lunch where they cook sausages but also kangaroo and emu. All the parents thought it was a lovely day, very fond memories. 

What advice do you have for individuals or organisations who want to respectfully engage with Indigenous culture and support NAIDOC Week initiatives?

Ask around what’s going on within the week or you can head over to the NAIDOC Week website where they tell you what’s going on. As I said it’s such a lovely week and hey you might learn some things about the culture you didn’t already know. 
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