Celebrate strength, resilience and survival as part of Always Was, Always Will Be this January 26 on NITV and SBS – National Indigenous Television (NITV) and the wider SBS network invite audiences to deepen their understanding of January 26 in 2024 through a curated week of First Nations programming including powerful documentary Her Name is Nanny Nellie, Leah Purcell’s award-winning film The Drover’s Wife and special updates from NITV News. The suite of content explores the history of First Nations peoples including trailblazers who’ve made a difference.  

Tanya Denning-Orman, a proud Birri and Guugu Yimidhirr woman and SBS Director of Indigenous Content, said:

“At NITV, every day is an open invitation for all Australians to connect with First Nations stories and perspectives. As we approach January 26, SBS – with NITV at its heart – wants to encourage and empower all Australians to understand more about the 65,000+ years of history and cultures we have across this continent, the views and experiences within communities, and the role we can all play in Australia’s future.”   

Premiering on NITV and SBS on Sunday 21 January, Her Name is Nanny Nellietells the story of a trio of nameless statues buried in the archives of the Australian Museum which trigger a great granddaughter’s journey to rewrite how Aboriginal people are represented in Australia’s public history.  

The week of programming continues with The Drover’s Wife, Australia’s first feature film with an Indigenous woman writing, directing and performing the lead role. Leah Purcell’s award-winning film airs on NITV on Thursday 25 January at 8.30pm and on SBS World Movies on Saturday 27 January at 8.30pm. 

On January 26, the strength and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, cultures, stories and histories will be given prominence across NITV, beginning with Bamay at 5am. The morning will focus on cultures and ceremonies, with programs including the buŋgul from Garma Festival, DanceRites 2023 followed by the Elder in Residence Oration from Widjabul Wia-bal woman from the Bundjalung Nation, and SBS’s Elder in Residence, Rhoda Roberts AO.  

The afternoon begins with a special, updated episode of Living Black which explores the Indigenous Voice to Parliament Referendum, followed by Ganbu Gulin: One Mob, a documentary about a council’s decision to stop observing January 26 as Australia Day, directed by Daniel King.

Ningla A-Na airs at 1.10pm, the only documentary shot from within the Aboriginal Tent Embassy, chronicling the events surrounding the establishment of the embassy on the lawns of Parliament House. 

Also on January 26, NITV News coverage and updates across broadcast and digital platforms will provide ongoing reporting and insight on the day’s events from every state and territory. The coverage will be led by NITV News presenter and NITV’s Head of Indigenous News and Current Affairs, Natalie Ahmat, a proud Mudburra and Wagadagum woman. 

Two-minute bulletins air hourly on NITV from 2pm, culminating in a news program, Day 26 – NITV News, premiering at 5.30pm and simulcast on SBS. The program will look at how communities across the country are marking the day. 

SBS On Demand will feature a curated Always Was, Always Will Be collection of programming. SBS Food will air a selection of programs throughout the day, celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures through cuisine with episodes of The Cook Up with Adam Liaw and Strait to the Plate. From 12.15pm,SBS VICELAND will air Sing About This Country  

SBS Audio will be covering January 26 in more than 60 languages. Stories will explore Australia’s diverse communities’ perspectives on January 26 and deepen understanding and connections with First Nations peoples among multicultural communities.  

SBS Learn will showcase Always Was, Always Will Be teaching resources exploring the histories, languages and cultures of Australia’s First Peoples. Teachers can use the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Protocols Guide to create a culturally enriching learning environment for the school community to engage respectfully with First Nations Peoples and perspectives. This guide is authored by Wonnarua and Kunja woman, Shiralee Lawson and Wiradjuri woman, Jarin Baigent.

More content highlights will be announced next month.

Follow the conversation on social media using #AlwaysWasAlwaysWillBe

Media Release – SBS

Celebrate strength, resilience and survival as part of Always Was, Always Will Be this January 26 on NITV and SBS

TV Central NITV content HERE

Celebrate strength, resilience and survival as part of Always Was, Always Will Be this January 26 on NITV and SBS
Her Name is Nanny Nellie (image – NITV)