ILF | UPDATING | News from the Indigenous Literacy Foundation | October 2023

[Edited extract from public address]

Yamandhu marang!

The Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF) acknowledges the privilege and responsibility the ILF has as a Community led organisation supporting Community literacy aspirations and our ongoing commitment to remain Community led and being guided by the experts. We acknowledge the recent referendum result, which is shaping the next chapter of Australia's journey. Read full statement.

We would like to thank the individuals, schools and organisations who have supported us this year. As a result, we have gifted 116,400 culturally relevant books to remote Communities through Book Supply, supported 116 playgroups through Book Buzz and published 12 books representing 8 First Languages. Your support has made this possible.  

Every donation, share, referral, mention and purchase of ILF books and merchandise helps. Thank you for being part of our journey. 

Please help us to expand our programs in 2024 by supporting us this Festive Season. You can support us by donating via our beautiful Gift of Reading card campaign and you now have the option of digital cards. Every dollar counts, so please if you can, give generously. And if you have little ones in your life, please think about purchasing our bilingual books written and illustrated by remote Communities, available through our shop. They are an ideal gift to introduce young readers to First Nations languages and stories. 

Mandaang guwu,
Ben Bowen (Wiradjuri/Gandagarra)Chief Executive Officer


SPOTLIGHTING | Word of the Month

To celebrate the second year of UNESCO's Decade of Indigenous Languages, each month we encourage readers to learn a new word an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander language. 
This month's word is goanna in Bundjalung language! Bundjalung Country is in the far North East Coast of NSW and the Southern Eastern coast of Queensland


TRAINING | With IndigenousX

This month ILF staff participated in a cultural training workshop hosted by Indigenous X. Luke and Mike from Indigenous X not only shared insights but challenged the team to think about cultural safety.

REGISTERING | Now for Busking for Change 2024!

Registrations for Busking for Change for 2024 are open! We are pleased to announce that Shordi Krik is the Busking for Change 2024 song!. This means that schools across the country will learn to sing the Shordi Krik song in Kriol and English while raising funds for our Foundation next year. 


ILF Chair Natalie Ahmat interviewed CEO Ben, DOBBY and Programs Manager Tictac about "Words that change the world" at the WPP House at SXSW Festival this month. Thank you to Mindshare for giving us the opportunity to talk about the importance of language. 

ATTENDING | SWITCH 2023 Conference

We are looking forward to attending the SWITCH conference this year. It is a great opportunity for the ILF to connect with New South Wales public libraries and showcase the importance of books in language in libraries. If you attend the conference, please make sure to pop by the ILF booth!

CLICKING | For More Stories


 Work in Community  

HOSTING | Pamela Lofts Bequest Workshop

We are very excited to be hosting our first Pamela Lofts Bequest Workshop next month. The workshop will be held in Sydney with youth from remote Northern Territory and Western Australia who have shown an interest in digital technology, digital art and storytelling. Thanks so much for the generous collaboration with Adobe and DXC 


HOSTING | Create Initiative Workshop

Next month ILF Ambassadors Shelley Ware and David Lawrence will be hosting a Create Initiative workshop with students from Tiwi College in Sydney. The Create Initiative's aim is to build capacity, confidence and skills with young First Nations peoples in the creation of stories for print. 

HOSTING | Workshops in Vincentia with Kirli Saunders

We are excited to be heading down to Vincentia next week to work with students from Vincentia High School on writing and illustrating a book in Dhurga language! The workshops will be hosted in collaboration with Proud Gunai Woman, Award-Winning Writer, Artist and Consultant - Kirli Saunders


 Ambassador News 

David Lawrence

Congratulations to ILF Ambassador David Lawrence on the publication of his second book in the Magic Pen series, Xander and the Pen. Featuring hilarious illustrations, and with messages about bullying, family dynamics, disability and the environment, this is fast-paced, entertaining middle grade fiction book that will resonate with kids everywhere. Available to purchase next month!

Richard Flanagan

Congratulations to ILF Ambassador Richard Flanagan on his new book, Question 7 that will be available to purchase next month. Beginning at a love hotel by Japan’s Inland Sea and ending by a river in Tasmania, Question 7 is about the choices we make about love and the chain reaction that follows.

 Special Thanks 

A huge thank you to IntoWork Australia who have made a donation of $125,000, helping us to get culturally relevant books into remote Communities around Australia.

Thinking of writing your will? The ILF has partnered with Safewill to provide our supporters with the ability to write their will for just $80 (half price).
We are indebted to our partner Australia Post for their support with the delivery of Book Supply packs to remote Communities and their ongoing fundraising. 

 Community Fundraisers 

We would like to specially thank Emma Saunders who  raised $1,500 for our Foundation all the way from London! Emma swam a half-mile (800m) loop at Swim Serpentine – a world famous lake in London's Hyde Park. "It was thrilling to be part of such a big event – there were over 4,000 people swimming different lengths through the day – and to raise money for the ILF while doing so was even better". 

A big thank you to Services Australia and their staff who worked together to raise an incredible $22,741 for our Foundation! The organisation used a range of strategies to raise funds including casual dress days and staff trivia to generate funds that will help shape the direction of children’s literacy. 

We are so grateful for the support of La La Land who are supporting the ILF for the second year in a row. This year,  La La Land have committed to pledging a percentage of their Christmas card set sales to our Foundation. Shop the range here!


Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF)
Address: 17/207 Kent Street, Sydney NSW 2000
Tel: (02) 9280 0644
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