Kyah Simon & Lydia Williams on 'Heal Country'

To celebrate NAIDOC Week 2021 and its theme, 'Heal Country,' we sat down with Kyah Simon and Lydia Williams to talk about their connection to Country and how we can heal our nation together.

Proud Noongar woman, Lydia Williams, was born in Katanning, WA, but lived most of her childhood years in Kalgoorlie.

Spending her days going to school, hunting and learning how to live off the land, along with raising two kangaroos meant that Williams always had a deep connection to Country.

Lydia Williams and her kangaroos

"To me, Country is the place you grew up, the place you love and the place where your family is," Williams said.

Simon, an Anaiwan woman, explains Country as a spiritual being, encompassing all that surrounds it.

"Country is a person, it's the water we're on, the land we're on and it's really important to stay connected," she shared.

Both having grown up as descendants of the stolen generation, they agree that healing Country comes from respecting First Nations people and the land they've fought hard to protect.

"Healing Country is being proud of where you come from and understanding how nature and the earth, work together," Williams explained.

"As Australians, it's about having a special place in your heart for the Indigenous communities."

"Healing Country comes from preserving our land, our water and our sacred sites," Simon added.

"We are part of the oldest living culture in the world and I want to be in a position, as do many people, to pass that rich culture down to future generations."

Williams said that communication between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people is key to moving forward and healing Country, to heal our nation.

"To heal Country together, we need to be humble, willing to listen and communicate."

Simon echoed her thoughts.

"For non-Indigenous and Indigenous people, we can have those conversations about how we can preserve this land together.

"That's the way to move forward in healing our Country."

Find out more about NAIDOC Week 2021 HERE