Presenters Matty Mills & Tyrone Pynor On What NAIDOC Week & Its 2022 Theme Means To Them
PEDESTRIAN.TV has partnered with SBS and NITV to help you celebrate NAIDOC Week 2022.

Held in the first week of July, NAIDOC Week is a chance to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Each year NAIDOC Week (named after the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee) focuses on a theme, and in 2022 it’s: Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!

From fighting for environmental, cultural and heritage protections, constitutional change, working towards treaties, or calling out racism — this NAIDOC week (and all year ’round) we need to all work together to show up for Indigenous communities across the country.

PEDESTRIAN.TV spoke with First Nations creatives, Matty Mills and Tyrone Pynor from NITV to learn what NAIDOC Week means to them and how they’re celebrating this year and beyond.

Matty Mills, Actor, TV Presenter & Reporter on Big Mob Brekky, Getaway, The Point, Nula News

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A post shared by Matty Mills (@itsmattymills)

What’s your favourite part of being an Indigenous creative?
I love being able to share my culture and express my Aboriginal pride through my work both on TV as a presenter and as an actor on stage. Recently, my favourite part has been connecting with First Nation tourism around our country and sharing these wonderful experiences on Getaway, as the shows first ever Indigenous presenter.

How do you celebrate NAIDOC Week and what does it mean to you?
NAIDOC week is a great time of the year to connect with community and celebrate who we are as First Nation people. It’s a moment also to reflect and be proud of all the hard work we as a community continuously do to ensure our voices and truth is heard. NAIDOC week to me is a proud moment but it did originate from community protest and that must never be forgotten.

This year’s theme is Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! What does that mean to you?
This year’s theme is an empowering statement that reiterates the continued struggle and resistance of First Nation people and amplifies the message that we as a community must continue to keep marching forward to ensure our voices are heard and our truth is told. I feel it’s a call to action and a powerful message to unite us all.

What are you looking forward to this NAIDOC week? Any events?
There are so many incredible events every year but I’m very excited to be returning to Big Mob Brekky on NITV as the Entertainment Reporter and to be releasing a very special project in collaboration with Brooke Blurton within NAIDOC week.

What do you wish more people knew about NAIDOC week?
I feel like the wider community shouldn’t see NAIDOC week as the only opportunity within the year to engage with First Nation creatives because it becomes about tokenism. Hear our stories and connect with us all year ’round. In saying that, be sure to get amongst the community during NAIDOC week and be eager to learn and listen, in the hope you will find an appreciation and respect for the oldest continuous culture on earth.

Tyrone Pynor, Presenter at Triple J & Big Mob Brekky

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A post shared by Tyrone ⚡️ (@tyronepynor)

What’s your favourite part of being an Indigenous creative?
Being able to take up space in areas where generations before me might not have been able to. Further, knowing that whatever creative space I am in, I can hopefully create a safe environment that make mob feel welcomed.

How do you celebrate NAIDOC Week and what does it mean to you?
NAIDOC week is a week of celebration and recognition! This will be the second year I’ll be working through NAIDOC week on Big Mob Brekky. Working alongside a cast of First Nations talent who inspire me every day is an amazing feeling.

This year’s theme is Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! What does that mean to you?
It can get to a point where getting up, standing up and showing up can be an exhausting slog, but even on the days when I might not be feeling it, I do it anyways. Whether you’re First Nations or not, showing up to support mob can mean more than you know. Change comes from the continuous rallying efforts from past, present and emerging generations. Make the effort.

What are you looking forward to this NAIDOC week? Any events?
I’ll be heading along to the NAIDOC ball this year! They are always such a sight to see, it’s like the Blak MET Gala. Seeing mob from everywhere dressed to the nines mixed in with a night of celebrating Blak excellence is always a highlight for me!

What do you wish more people knew about NAIDOC week?
More people need to know that NAIDOC can be a great week of learning for people who might not know a lot about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and history. There are so many local activities and events that happen around the country, so find one and head along.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Get Up, Stand Up, Show Up to Big Mob Brekky, 7:30am every morning on NITV during NAIDOC week. BIG love.

Celebrate NAIDOC Week 2022 from July 3-10 with SBS and NITV as they explore this year’s theme, ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!’, and bring you a huge week of content across the network, like True Colours, Off Country, Big Mob Brekky, and a tonne more.

Image: Tyrone Pynor Instagram/ [@tyronepynor]