Helensvale students walk together with courage Page Image Image CaptionHelensvale State School students spell out courage as part of NRW Page ContentAs a symbol of their unity and respect for each other, students, staff and parents of Helensvale State School walked together with courage during National Reconciliation Week (NRW). NRW is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to reconciliation in Australia. Aunty Vicki McCrae, Indigenous Teacher Aide at Helensvale State School, was due to return from leave just prior to NRW. In recognition of her tireless efforts to build positive relationships amongst students and the wider school community, principal Heidi Booth wanted to organise an event that would long be remembered."NRW gave us the opportunity to show Aunty Vicky just how much she is appreciated by students and staff alike, as well as the wider school community," Mrs Booth said."As everyone gathered on the school oval to spell out the word 'courage' and walk together as the welcome song from our local Indigenous community played, you could sense the respect and love that surrounded the group." Aunty Vicki said it was a very emotional moment for her seeing all the students coming together."I am so proud that my non-Indigenous colleagues view reconciliation as so important that they would organise this event," Aunty Vicki said."We have been working hard for many years to instil the importance of reconciliation within our community. Without people supporting you, it is just not possible." The 2019 theme 'Grounded in Truth: Walk Together with Courage' encouraged us to speak truthfully about our colonial history, fostering positive race relations and helping to heal historical wounds. Students spent the week reading Indigenous stories together and writing their own stories about their personal and shared experiences. They decorated footprints and placed them around the school to symbolise making the journey to reconciliation together. The school has plans to paint areas of the school with Indigenous artwork and to continue developing positive relationships.