“WE’RE lucky to have the oldest Indigenous culture in the world and I think that’s really special in itself.”
This year’s theme of NAIDOC Week is Always Was, Always Will Be — and it’s something that resonates with Carlton’s Gab Pound.
Growing up in Alice Springs, Pound has her own unique view on how Indigenous culture should be celebrated year-round.
Noting that it’s not just up to Indigenous people to start the conversation, Pound said it was crucial for non-Indigenous people to take the first step towards education and knowledge on the topic.
“Indigenous people make up such a small percentage of the population, so for non-Indigenous people to speak up is really important,” Pound said.
“I think it’s up to non-Indigenous people to educate themselves and really pass on that message.
“I think it’s awesome and something to be really celebrated and for their voices to be heard.”
Having spent a four years at the Carlton Football Club in the AFLW system, Pound has been able to see the work that has been going on in the Indigenous space throughout the Club and the wider football world.
Pointing to the acknowledgment of NAIDOC Week as well as the AFL’s Sir Doug Nicholls Round, Pound said it was a point of pride for the game.
“The AFL and Carlton have been pretty good at voicing the Indigenous people’s place in this world,” she said.
“I think it's really important that we have Indigenous Round and create that awareness for the wider community.”
When asked why she uses her platform as an AFLW player to promote this cause, Pound noted the issues that still surround Indigenous Australians and diverse cultures everywhere.
“I think it’s really important to have that diversity and I feel like I’ve got teammates and people who are close around me who identify with that,” she said.
“There are reasons on why it should be elevated because there are so many issues right now that need to come to light and to be fixed.”