Aunty Mary Atkinson/Charles
Senior Elder, Educator and Cultural Practitioner
Mary Atkinson/Charles is a proud Wiradjuri/Ngunnawal woman with family connections to the Carrols, Merritt, Charles and McGunnies clans. She has lived in Wagga Wagga for over 20 years where she has raised 4 children and is helping with 12 grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Currently Mary is enrolled in the Wiradjuri language course at Charles Sturt University so she can share her cultural knowledge with her family. She works in education and has a real passion for sharing her culture to the young ones and whoever wants to listen. Mary believes that reconciliation can happen through listening and sharing with each other.
Of the 2021 Program Aunty Mary said:
“Being the Elder in Residence for Residential One in Wagga Wagga (Wiradjuri) and Residential Two in Canberra (Ngunnawal) – I took on this role with great respect. It was amazing to be available to offer a very warm and welcoming environment on the lands of my people, with my connection to both Countries and communities.
From the Residential One to the Graduation in Residential Two, I witnessed participants learning and saw huge transformation and growth in all of them. The community in Wiradjuri Country, Wagga Wagga are looking forward to the return of this Program soon.”