Uni stu­dents hear ac­tivist’s mes­sage

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS - Noel Thomp­son noel.thomp­son@cnbtimes.com.au

COM­ING from Canada, 13-year-old Ta’Kaiya Blaney, who also has Na­tive Amer­i­can eth­nic­ity, was find­ing it a bit hot in Eidsvold last week.

Be­fore leav­ing for Aus­tralia, it was only 2 de­grees in Sliammon First Na­tion, where she lives with her Amer­i­can mother and Na­tive Amer­i­can fa­ther.

“I love it here in Aus­tralia, talk­ing to the in­dige­nous peo­ples of your na­tion,” Ta’Kaiya said.

“I am in Eidsvold to ad­dress the stu­dents from the Queens­land Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy, who are also vis­it­ing your town,” she said. The young Cana­dian is a singer, song­writer and en­vi­ron­men­tal ac­tivist.

Just en­ter­ing her teen years, she has cam­paigned more for en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion in a few years than most adults.

“I feel that as hu­mans, as par­tic­i­pants and be­ings that walk upon this earth, it is our re­spon­si­bil­ity to help the earth,” Ta’Kaiya said.

“We all need to take steps to­wards a clean and healthy fu­ture re­gard­ing an­i­mals, hu­mans, plants, and the var­i­ous ecosys­tems. “Our earth is our home. “Over the past four years, I’ve been an ad­vo­cate for pro­vid­ing bet­ter qual­i­ties of liv­ing in in­dige­nous first na­tions’ ter­ri­to­ries, and end­ing the op­pres­sion, racism, and cor­rup­tion we face from our gov­ern­ment and within our com­mu­nity.”

Ta’Kaiya has spo­ken at UN meet­ings across the globe, in­clud­ing the TUNZA UN chil­dren and youth con­fer­ence on the en­vi­ron­ment in Ban­dung In­done­sia, and the Rio+20 UN con­fer­ence on the en­vi­ron­ment in Rio de Janiero.

“We’re fight­ing in a sense that we are de­fend­ing the land, and de­fend­ing our Mother Earth.”

PHOTO: NOEL THOMP­SON

DE­FEND­ING THE LAND: Ta’Kaiya Blaney, 13, was shar­ing her mes­sage in Eidsvold last week.

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