Schoolchildren raise their voices in celebration of Indigenous Language Song Competition

The ABC and First Languages Australia have called for entries to the 2019 Indigenous Language Song Competition, which enables schoolchildren across the country to support and sustain the languages and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

In this International Year of Indigenous Languages, schools are invited to work with their local Indigenous community in translating the song Marrin Gamu into the first language of their area and record a video of their students performing the song. Videos uploaded to the ABC Education website are in the running for prizes such as local language resource packs and audio-visual recording equipment.

More than 2400 students from 80 schools across Australia have entered the annual competition since its launch in 2016, submitting videos in 52 Indigenous languages.


Annabel Astbury, Head of ABC Education, said: “We are inspired by the excitement among students and teachers to learn, celebrate and help preserve our first languages. We are proud to launch this year’s competition in National Reconciliation Week and to work with First Languages Australia in helping schools build connections with local Indigenous communities, as part of the ABC’s commitment to building greater understanding of and respect for our First Peoples.”

Faith Baisden, Coordinator of First Languages Australia, said: “There are hundreds of Aboriginal and Torres Strait languages and a wealth of cultural knowledge is held within each one. Discussions about Australia’s first languages can help create a society that knows and respects the history and cultures of this land.”


To celebrate the International Year of Indigenous Languages, the ABC and First Languages Australia have also partnered on This Place, a digital initative that invites Indigenous Australians to create short videos sharing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stories, history and cultures