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Hilton Hotel Darwin  

  11th- 13th December 2019

Now Calling for Papers closes Friday 16 August  2019


In Australia, the protocol is to recognise the Traditional Owners of the land to which we are gathering. Therefore, all presentations must begin with an acknowledgement to country and to local Traditional Elders: “We wish to acknowledge and respect the traditional custodians whose ancestral lands we are to meet upon. We acknowledge the deep feelings of attachment and relationship of Aboriginal peoples to Country. We also pay respects to the cultural authority of Aboriginal peoples visiting / attending from other areas of Australia who are present here”.

Indigenous Conference Services acknowledges and pay our respect to the Traditional people of the Country. "Welcome to Country" ceremony and "acknowledging the traditional custodians" of the land shows respect for Aboriginal people as Australia's First Peoples. Ceremonies and protocols are a fundamental part of Aboriginal cultures.


The 2019 National Indigenous Speaking Deadly Languages Revival & Education Conference is scheduled to be held at the Hilton Hotel in Darwin on the 11th- 13th December 2019 which is envisage to be the largest gathering of Indigenous linguists, researchers, language workers, teachers, educators, representatives from governments, NGOs, community language centres and community members and groups from all states and territories of Australia. The conference provides an opportunity for delegates to network, share ideas and yarn with representatives from community language groups to celebrate success stories, share challenges and experiences they’ve faced in the implementation of various attempts to revitalise language in community. 


The overall theme for the conference is empowering First Nations communities through languages revival and the passing on of traditional knowledge. The conference aims to:

  • Develop a global network of First Nations linguists, language workers and educators

  • Provide an open and frank forum for discussion

  • Work towards keeping Indigenous languages 'alive' for future generations

  • Network and lend support to individuals and communities working in Indigenous languages space

  • Help establish and grow a national network and resources through information sharing

  • Show that there are great efforts being made to make change

  • Exchange information regarding the successes and challenges in implementing programs

  • To bring together all sectors of the community as a united voice

  • Bring together researchers, educators, First Nations linguists, language workers, government agencies, policy makers & organisations

  • Foster partnerships between government, NGOs, community groups and Aboriginal and Torres Straits Islander families and communities

  • Assists First Nations peoples to express, preserve and maintain their cultures through languages and arts

  • Formulate and brainstorm ideas, for the establishment of First World Congress for First Nations peoples and their languages


The conference philosophy is based upon the premise that any language in the world will continue to survive if it is constantly being used at home and in the community. For First Nations peoples, learning and teaching on country by Elders is the most effective way to pass on language and traditional knowledge to the next generation. First Nations languages and knowledge are perceived to be holistic in which teaching, learning and passing on knowledge are interconnected. In other words, language cannot be separated from land, culture and country. Nowadays, although Indigenous children attend school, it is only a handful of schools throughout the country teach Indigenous traditional language as part of their curriculum. However, today sees more education establishments are trying to either teach or develop an Indigenous language program.


As we are all aware, 1770 in Australia seen the arrival of the Europeans and their way of life. Not satisfied with their declaration on terra nullius, they started to occupy Australia and take possession of our land.  However in many years to come, the White Australia policy was enacted with the basis of this policy that First Nations peoples of Australia assimilated the European culture as their way of life. As such Indigenous culture was frowned upon and even First Nations Australian practiced their culture, their language and their way of life.   One of the most destructive laws ever passed and enforced was the law where if you are caught speaking your traditional language, you would find yourself in trouble with the police, expelled from the community or in some cases have you incarcerated. Even though the White Australia policy was repelled the damaged was done to many communities with the total alienation of our traditional languages. As a result, our language could not be passed on to our children or our children’s children, as the link between generations of speakers was broken. 

Although our languages had been developed and used over thousands of years but within two centuries, our traditional languages in many incidents have become almost extinct. This was especially prevalent to the East Coast of Australia and even more pronounced as you get closer to Sydney. According to AIATSIS, over 250 Indigenous Australian language groups covered the continent at the time of European settlement in 1788 but today, only around 120 of those languages are still spoken and many are at risk of being lost as Elders pass away. However, First Nations peoples of Australia are proving how resilient we are. Throughout the length and breadth of this country, Indigenous peoples are fighting back and takings strides to revitalise their language groups. Its no surprise to see the pride and glee in peoples’ eyes when language is spoken again. Some amazing work in the Northern Territory and Western Australia have been implemented to make sure that traditional language is not only verbally taught but also in written form. This conference will strive to highlight the journey of revitalisation of our language and culture together with how important our country is to our mob.  


Guidelines in Submitting Paper:

•    Papers should not contain offensive language and take into account cultural sensitivities of Australian first nation people.

•    Papers must treat the themes in a manner that contributes to further discussion of conference aims.
•    Conference papers must be presented in the finish format not less than 60 days prior to the event.
•    First round of calling for papers is now open with closing date will be on Friday 14 June 2019; with a  second round closing on July 26th  2019 if required
•    Papers MUST be submitted in Microsoft Word format.  Papers other than this format will NOT be considered.
•    Authors of papers presented at the conference will be formally notified of their acceptance in writing.
•    Registration fee of $650 will apply to all persons submitting papers payable within 7 days upon notification acceptance of papers.
•    Papers should explore ways in which the themes show up in the philosophy of the conference.
•    All papers must be presented in a positive and informative light.



(Register early to get a discount!) Please note that registrations are set out in an affordable way for organisations, which changes on a monthly basis. Hence the earlier you register, the more savings for your organisation. Registration fees include all day access to the event, available conference papers, daily lunch and refreshments for registered delegates only. Fees do not include travel costs or accommodation. Registration fees are non-refundable and must be received within 7 DAYS from being issued an invoice. Otherwise, bookings will not be considered.  To register, please click here to registration page and complete the form or you can also request for a conference brochure and the registration form to be sent to you by email at



(This agenda is not final and published only to guide those who will be submitting paper. It will change without prior notice. Please visit this website for future updates)


8:30am   REGISTRATION OF DELEGATES              
9:00am   Welcome to Country followed by cultural performance

9:30am   Formal Opening Keynote 

10:30am MORNING TEA (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers)

11:00am Keynote: Empowering First Nations Linguists & Language Workers in the community

11:45am Keynote: Listen to what I say, Not what you think I said 
12:30pm LUNCH BREAK   (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers)
1:30pm   Concurrent Session: Working in partnership with Indigenous communities

                Room 1:        Addressing Traditional language needs in the community (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                                               Room 2:        Changes in our Community Because of Language (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)   
2:15pm   Concurrent Session:      Developing resources in continuing language and traditional knowledge  

                Room 1:        Innovative digital solutions to capture and teach language (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                                                  Room 2:        Developing a traditional language dictionary (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)      
3:00pm   AFTERNOON TEA  (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers)                                   
3:30pm   Keynote: Elders & Language - Empowering Communities with Traditional Language

4:15pm   Yarning Circle & Debrief - Reflection of the Day


DAY TWO  (THURSDAY)         

8:30am    SIGN-IN 
9:00am    Keynote: Cultural Leadership - Learning from our Elders, sharing with our generations to invest in our future 
9:45am    Keynote: Collaborative approaches to building the digital capabilities of communities 

10:30am  MORNING TEA  (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers)                                  
11:00am Concurrent Session: Working With Community Language Centres In The Community 

                 Room 1:       Languages and cultural expression (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                                                    

                 Room 2:       Stories and Language (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)

11:45am Concurrent Session: Positive outcomes in workforce development and delivery of programs

                Room 1:       Building capacity to teach, preserve and revive Indigenous languages (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                               Room 2:        Career pathway of Indigenous Peoples to teach language (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)   
12:30pm LUNCH BREAK (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers) ​     
1:30pm   Concurrent Session: Working With Elders In The Community

                 Room 1:       Cultural Connections: Generations Past, Generations Future (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                                                Room 2:       Language, Culture & Country (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)

2:15pm   Concurrent Session: Academia & Traditional Language

                 Room 1:       School-based language revitalisation programs (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)                                                                                       Room 2:       Culturally Appropriate research in recording and capturing traditional language (Now Accepting Submissions/Paper from Community)     

3:00pm    AFTERNOON TEA (Network with Exhibitors & Service Providers)   
3:30pm   We all have a Role to Play - How Indigenous language links to health and well-being

4:15pm   Yarning Circle: Where to from here? Guest Speakers, Elders & Delegates   

5:00pm   END OF CONFERENCE: Distribution of Certificates 


For 2019, we offer new and exciting innovation for our conferences. Day 3 is devoted to professional development workshop or masterclass. As such, we have introduced several exciting networking and professional development innovations which is an extra cost for your chosen masterclass and comes with a course certificate. Day Three is optional so please make sure you complete your registration form with the masterclass included if you intend to attend. This year’s program features a strong selection of Leadership and Empowerment topics for workers in Indigenous Health sector and practitioners at every level of experience and expertise.



LEADERSHIP SECRETS: The Underground workshop for growing your leadership by Wendy Watego and Vicki Scott, STARS Institute of Learning

In Just One Day You Can Learn Simple Secrets That Will Blow Your Mind and Change Your Leadership Forever…

 This workshop will teach you to:

  • Find out what your leadership blueprint is.  This is your own unconscious set of principles that drives your leadership and determines how effective you are as a leader.

  • Build your leadership muscles by taking care of yourself.

  • Run your own brain and increase your leadership intelligence.

  • Unchain yourself from a Silent National Lie which is at the heart of your effectiveness as an Indigenous leader.

Leadership Secrets is strictly limited to 30 people only. Cost is $330 per person.

For further for more information and details about our post-conference masterclasses, please click HERE



As they say, all work and no play, makes for a dull conference. So to overcome this, the conference secretary has organised a conference dinner to be held on the first night of the event. This dinner with give delegates the opportunity to further network whilst lets your hair down in an informal setting. The conference dinner will be at a cost of $150 per person for a three course meal. The conference dinner is additional to the conference fees and bookings must be made prior to the event. For those who wish to see more of the area the conference secretary has also negotiated a special rate for those delegates who may be interested. Delegates can avail themselves of these offers.


The event secretary has come up with some great ideas on how to save money for you and your organisation.

1. ACCOMMODATION: We have negotiated a special room rate for delegates at the venue. Contact us to avail for the delegates rate


2. TRAVEL: We have engaged Helloworld (formerly Harvey World Travel) Hervey Bay to negotiate with all the relevant airlines for special or discounted airfare rates.

3. CONCESSION: A special rate for university students is being offered for a flat rate of $650.




As an employee we are asked to present valid reasons why we should attend. Listed below are valid points that can be raised with your employer to justify your attendance.


  • Staff attending conferences regularly tends to become long term employees,

  • An event such as this adds to the positive moral of staff,

  • Conferences are a great way of providing ongoing training,

  • Provides the opportunity to further enhance the organisation knowledge base,

  • The opportunity for saving organisations money because of the shortness of the event,

  • Allows delegates to showcase the organisation nationally and internationally,

  • May provide organisations with new ideas,

  • Gives organisations a showcase and voice at a national level,

  • Provide an opportunity to evaluate various programs,

  • Because this event is conducted over a short period, staff are only absent for a minor amount of time.


This conference is blessed with the abundance of the highest calibre Indigenous First Nations speakers. The speaker's list will be updated once all photos and biography are completed. Please watch this space as it will be updated regularly. COMING SOON!




From the sparkling harbour and WWII history to the city's Asian-influenced food and tropical outdoor lifestyle, Darwin is an adventurers' paradise. Treat your tastebuds and indulge your sense of fun and adventure in the Territory’s tropical capital city. Darwin is world famous for its fabulous food, colourful outdoor markets and a diverse bag of adventure activities. Darwin is the capital of Australia's Northern Territory and a former frontier outpost. It's also a gateway to massive Kakadu National Park. Its popular waterfront area has several beaches and green areas like Bicentennial Park. Also near the water is the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, displaying Southeast Asian and Pacific art, plus a pearling lugger and other seafaring vessels.


One of the prohibitive factors in attending a conference is the airfare component. Our company strives in making our event a lesser burden on the individual or organisation by negotiating competitive and affordable travel packages. When asking for a quote through Helloworld Travel (Hervey Bay) you must pick:

Airfares & Accommodation

Helloworld Travel (Hervey Bay) can be contacted on 07 41281900 Toll free 1800 688993   


Indigenous Conference Services (Australia) also recognises that some NGO’s or other agencies will need to seek additional funding to attend, therefore Helloworld Travel (Hervey Bay) quotation can be made out to either pay ASAP or to take into account the time that is required to obtain funding. Further advantage to using Hello World Travel for your airfares is that if something goes wrong, you have greater access to your travel agent if required.


Indigenous Conference Services is proud to announce that we have established a partnership with First Nations Travel Australia. First Nations Travel Australia (FNT) is the first Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owned travel agency, offering a full range of travel and accommodation services. As we are all aware that the hidden cost of attending a conference is travel and accommodation, First Nations Travel Agency specialises in providing Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities and individuals with the lowest available airfares and accommodation to delegates attending Indigenous conferences throughout Australia.

As the old saying goes the bigger the group, the lower the cost. This principle especially applies to travel and accommodation. In many areas of Australia, choice and selection of flights are limited due to the monopoly of regional airline companies operating in remote communities. Hence, we cannot do much in bringing the airfare costs down.  Also, upon arriving at your destination you then have to organise accommodation, and this is where the costs are starting to add up. However, First Nations Travel Agency strives to make bookings seamless and hassle-free for your organisation.

First Nations Travel’s business plan is based upon the principle that at any one time there is more than one Indigenous person / organisation requiring travel and accommodation. As such, First Nations Travel have negotiated and secured special rates with all of the major players within the travel and hotel industry.

First Nations Travel have secured an unbelievable special rate with the host venue for those delegates who wish the convenience of staying onsite. Your accommodation costs can now be added to your conference registration fees, reducing the amount of administration work in your accounting and acquittals.

It needs to be noted that your accommodation must be paid within seven days of the invoice.

For flight bookings and quotes, First Nations Travel please call us on (07) 4194 5168 or email or visit the website

Find your best price then call First Nations Travel will see if they can match or beat it. Indigenous Conference Services and First Nations Travel highly recommends that your airfares component should be booked as an open, changeable ticket and that you buy travel insurance to protect yourself and belongings.

Travelling interstate, overseas or to another city for personal or business reasons involves planning, expense and unfortunately, some risk too. Some of these risks could include the financial losses you experience due to travel changes, cancellation or interruption, medical expenses, baggage damage or theft, and more.

A travel insurance policy can provide you with cover you may need for financial losses caused by a wide range of events that can affect your trip, whether they occur before, during or even after your trip. A typical travel insurance policy will have coverage for a traveller’s main concerns, including trip cancellations, medical emergencies, travel delays, and lost luggage.

Travel insurance should be a priority in all travel arrangements, whether you travel regularly, occasionally or you are setting off on a once-in-a-lifetime trip. Some holidays, such as ski trips or voyages on cruise ships, may require special policies.

When you’re travelling overseas, the Australian Government advises that travel insurance is as important as a passport, regardless of your destination.

Please click here for more information about travel insurance in Australia.



Flexible sponsorship packages are available. Sponsorship opportunities are only open to businesses and private enterprise, not individuals. Indigenous Conference Services (Australia) will be of further assistance in tailoring your sponsorship arrangement. Please phone us on +61 4557 76 668 or send us your expression of interest by e-Mail:




Indigenous Conference Services (Australia)

Postal Address: 8 Kiwi Court, Pt Vernon QLD 4655 Australia



Phone: 07 4194 2803, +61 4557 76 668

Please note this website is continually being updated.

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