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NAIDOC Week 2023

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Event description

Please join us for this special NAIDOC Week event, and hear from First Nations women as they tell stories, honour their Elders and imagine a truly reconciled Australia.

Wonnarua and Yuin woman, writer and journalist, Madison Howarth says:

"Our Elders are our teachers and caregivers. Our source of cultural knowledge and inspiration. Our storytellers.

They are survivors and the ones on the frontline. They are the embodiment of what it means to keep fighting for better and for more for the next generation. 

More than anything, our Elders are our cherished loved ones. Our grandmothers, grandfathers, uncles and aunties." 

This NAIDOC Week, Madison will be joined on stage by N’Arwee’t Professor Carolyn Briggs AM, Mundanara Bayles and Laura Thompson, to share knowledge of First Nations women who came before, and continue their legacy of fighting for fairness and recognition.

Future Women will collaborate with Witchery and BlackCard to create an unforgettable event that will broaden and deepen your understanding of First Nations matriarchy.

Date: Wednesday, 5 July, 2023

Time: 7:00 - 9:00am

Venue: The Ritz-Carlton Ballroom, 650 Lonsdale St, Naarm | Melbourne

Tickets: $140 for individuals and $1,400 for tables of 10 (inc. GST and excluding booking fee), includes breakfast. Tickets also include a Future Women Red yearly membership (value $49).




Madison Howarth is a Wonnarua and Yuin journalist with an ardency for storytelling through a First Nations lens. Madison completed a Bachelor of Media in Communications and Journalism with Distinction at UNSW and has written for NME, The Sydney Morning Herald, Women's Agenda, Refinery29 Australia, 9Honey, Future Women and more.



Founder and Managing Director, BlackCard

Mundanara Bayles is a Wonnarua, Bunjalung, Birri-Gubba and Gungalu woman from Redfern. She is also the Managing Director and Founder of cultural capability provider, BlackCard, and host of the Black Magic Woman podcast. Coming from a family that has been active in the Aboriginal movement since the 60s, Mundanara is a proud advocate for her people, as she follows her father’s footsteps.


Boon Wurrung senior Elder, Founder and Chairperson, Boon Wurrung Foundation

N'Arwee't Professor Carolyn Briggs AM is a Boon Wurrung senior Elder with more than 40 years’ experience in cultural research across communities throughout Australia. Carolyn is the founder of the Boon Wurrung Foundation, which has worked to restore the Boon Wurrung language. She has received numerous accolades for her lifelong work in documenting the history of her ancestors, including 2011 NAIDOC National Aboriginal Elder of the Year.


Co-Founder and CEO, Clothing the Gaps

Laura Thompson is a proud Gunditjamara woman and Co-founder and CEO of Clothing The Gaps an Aboriginal Social Enterprise and B-Corp that works to unite Aboriginal and non-Indigenous people through fashion and cause, this commitment was on full display with their campaign to #FreeTheFlag.


Wurundjeri Elder, Director and Chairperson, Wandoon Estate Aboriginal Corporation

Jacqui Wandin is a proud Woiwurrung Wurundjeri Elder and Director and Chairperson of Wandoon Estate Aboriginal Corporation (WEAC) Coranderrk Healesville. With strong leadership values, Jacqui carries the strength of her ancestors with pride by continuing the story of Coranderrk through Cultural Awareness, Land Management and storytelling. The management of the 200 acres of Coranderrk is a responsibility that Jacqui, together with family and community, take seriously. Guided by the legacy of the Coranderrk Community, Jacqui and WEAC strive to balance Caring for Country and sharing knowledge to amplify the voices of Aboriginal People.

Exclusive 20% Future Women member discounts apply. Become a Future Women member today to receive your discount code and a years worth of membership benefits! 

Discount available for First Nations individuals and businesses. Please contact for more information.


Doors will open for guest arrivals and drinks service from 7:00am

Breakfast will be served from 7:30am

Event formalities will commence at 8:00am

Event concludes 9:00am


Dietaries must be included in the event booking notes. Unfortunately the venue will not be able to accommodate any last minute requests from 48 hours prior or on the day of the event.

Photos will be taken at the event. If you do not agree to your photo being used by Future Women in promotional material covering the event, please email

10% of ticket and table sales will be donated to the Australian Indigenous Education Fund and Worawa Aboriginal College, supporting the education of First Nations girls.

With thanks to our Presenting Partner Witchery 

and Supporting Partner BlackCard.

BlackCard logo

Event artwork "For our Elders" by proud Samsep woman, Alysha Menzel @alyshamenzel
"This artwork celebrates the 2023 NAIDOC Week theme, ‘For Our Elders,’ symbolising the foundational role our Elders have played and continue to play in our communities. Through wisdom and resilience, our Elders have paved our pathways and taught us our cultural knowledge and history. They serve as our inspiration, guiding lights, and a source of reassurance as we keep working to preserve our traditions and create a better future for the next generations."

Future Women acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which this event will take place, the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung and Bunurong Boon Wurrung Peoples of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

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Refund policy

No refunds