National Sorry Day 2023

National Sorry Day (26 May) is the day when we remember and acknowledge the hurt and damage caused in the past by our governments when they forcibly removed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, communities and cultures.

It is a day when we reflect on the sad and painful stories of the Stolen Generations, recognise the resilience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and acknowledge the power and importance of saying we are sorry for these wrongs. It’s also a day when we recognise that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people continue to suffer from the effects of these policies.

On Friday 26 May 2023, La Trobe staff and students are invited to attend events being held across all campuses to acknowledge friends, families, colleagues and students affected by the intergenerational trauma of the Stolen Generations.

All events will include a Native Hibiscus commemorative display which will include messages of support from University staff and students.

If Sorry Day raises any concerns for you, please reach out to our Health, Wellbeing and Inclusion team.

National Sorry Day 2023 event schedule

CampusEventTime and location
Albury-Wodonga Join us to acknowledge the strength of the Stolen Generation Survivors and to reflect on how we can all share in the healing process. The Albury-Wodonga Campus will start the Sorry Day ceremony with an Acknowledgement to Country by Professor Nick Bond followed by a screening of the National Apology. Purple hibiscus flowers will be available to write messages to our friends, families and ancestors affected by the Stolen Generations. Warm food will be served afterward with a film screening of Rabbit Proof Fence.12 pm – 2 pm

Lecture Theatre 6 / Foyer
BendigoThe Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation facilitated event includes a smoking ceremony, a memorial and traditional songs. Warm food will be served afterward. This is an all-community event. 5 pm – 7 pm

Library Gallery/Plaza 
CityRead the Sorry Day speech delivered in the Australian Parliament in 2008 and send your message of support to those affected by the Stolen Generation. These messages will be displayed on campus, providing a powerful and moving way for students to connect with this important moment in Australian history and pay their respects.All-day display in the main lounge on Level 2

Level 2
open area
Melbourne (Bundoora)Join us in a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony, as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, on behalf of the University, formally acknowledges our friends, families, colleagues and students affected by the intergenerational trauma of the Stolen Generations. Hear from the Pro-Vice Chancellor Indigenous and add your message of support to the commemorative display whilst listening to First Nations singer-songwriter Pirritu’s gentle, honest and melodic music.10:30 am – 12:30 pm

The Agora
MilduraJoin the Head of Campus in an Acknowledgement of Country and screening of the National Apology made by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2008. Light refreshments to follow. Write your message of support on a native purple desert rose for the commemorative display around campus.2 pm – 3 pm

Brian Grogan Lecture Theatre
SheppartonIn partnership with the Shepparton Region Reconciliation Group,
La Trobe University will host a lunch on campus, in recognition of National Sorry Day. This event will follow the commemoration ceremony held at Monash Park and host local Yorta Yorta elders to share their story and provide an opportunity for staff, students and the local community to pay their respects to the Stolen Generation.
12 pm – 2 pm

Student Courtyard