Public servants embrace spirit of reconciliation in touch footy carnival

A touch football carnival in Canberra as part of this year's NAIDOC week aims to promote reconciliation.

Around 450 people will take part in Australia’s largest public servant sporting event in July.

Organisers have confirmed that the NAIDOC Week Touch Football Carnival will go ahead again, reaching its 17th straight year.

The event started in 2003 with four teams playing on a local oval near a public servant hub in the ACT.

This year will see 30 teams take to the field in what organiser Cris Castro says is an exciting event to watch.

“It’s very competitive with a mix of skills and experience,” Mr Castro said.

“There’s usually around 50 spectators which means there’s 500 people around the grounds, making for a good atmosphere.”

The Canberra Raiders will support the event again in 2019 after Jack Wighton made an appearance at last year’s tournament.

Elders from the Ngunnawal tribe will also attend to conduct an opening ceremony, welcoming the people to the land.

Mr Castro said less than 5% of public servants have Indigenous heritage.

“The event is during NAIDOC week and it’s about reconciliation. People from all backgrounds make up the teams.”

The registrations have opened, and the event is planned for July 10th, 2019.

By Keiran Deck

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