The Serving Country photography exhibition acknowledges and recognises the valuable contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander servicemen and service women who have served or who are serving in the Australian Defence Services. The Serving Country project creates a platform for servicemen and women to share their narrative, that is both empowering and strengthening, whilst validating their experience enabling them to reach out to the wider community. To be able to access programs and support services, veterans must feel recognised and empowered to do so. Narratives are an important part to commencing the healing and, are a major component of policies designed to improve the lives of veterans. This sharing component is the first step towards achieving awareness to enable the development of knowledge, skills and confidence within a community. I would like to show my respect to the traditional custodians of the lands on which the project was made, and acknowledge Elders, both past and present. This would not exist without the guidance and cultural knowledge of the many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from across Australia who have contributed to it. By doing so, we all become part of the seismic shift that has occurred in the Australian military and in Australian society in general, as we reconcile with our past and make a better future by closing the gap.
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