A large Highlands crowd gathered to be a part of national Sorry celebrations over the weekend.
Close to people 100 people attended the Aboriginal Cultural and Community Centre to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Australian Government’s apology to the Stolen Generations.
Gundungurra Elder and Custodian of Language Trish Levett performed the Welcome to Country in the Gundungurra language.
Wiradjuri man Peter Swain led the sacred Smoking Ceremony.
Wingecarribee Reconciliation Group (WRG) Chair deputy chair Gus Johnson said It was the best smoking they ever had.
“The crowd filed past the smoking fire, which brings cleansing and reconciliation, many getting ‘ochred up’,” he said.
“Peter was so moved by the sincerity of the crowd's participation that he was able to share some cultural knowledge. Didgeridoo players accompanying the smoking, James Steffen and Michael Connors blew us away with their sound.”
Founding member of WRG, Sally Waterford shared her story of beginning the very first Sorry Book which more than a thousand people of the Southern Highlands signed in the early 2000s.
Moss Vale High School captains also took part in the ceremony- Ali read Kevin Rudd's apology from 2008 and Kaylie accepted the apology on behalf of her clan from The Yuin people.
Wingecarribee 2018 Citizen of the Year, Wendy Lotter, spoke on her people's loss in the Stolen Generations and how far the Aboriginal community has.
WRG chair Kim Leevers gave an update on the Close The Gap initiatives since the apology.
Ecopella Choir sang songs honouring first peoples and country.