Forgiveness Circle with First Peoples Culturalists from Hawaii and Australia

Saturday, March 23, 2024 - 10:00 to 13:00


In person at Armagh, 226 Kooyong Rd, Toorak VIC 3142 and Online

Held in the unusual setting of a leafy and stately garden in Toorak, a unique combination of ceremonial protocol and intercultural dialogue will be led by First Nations traditional culturalists from Hawaii and Australia.

Presented by Mana O Kahiko (MOK) in collaboration with Initiatives of Change Australia (IofCA), the event begins with a compelling traditional welcome, smoking and gift giving ceremony with movement and song. Participants will then be invited into the ballroom for a conversation about the role of contemporary global Indigenous perspectives can play in healing Post Referendum Australia.

In the wake of the failed Voice to Parliament Referendum, many First Nations people and their supporters are experiencing burnout and despair. Generously sharing their ‘way of forgiveness’ practitioners of traditional Hawaiian culture extend a hand to gain strength and walk together for change in new ways.

Four speakers - Kumu Pa’a Kawika Foster, Uncle Shane Charles, Ash Dargan and Warren Mason —will lead the truth telling yarning circle where the themes of forgiveness, healing and reconciliation will be explored.

Kumu Pa’a Kawika, traces over fifty generations of ancestral connection to Indigenous people in Molokai Hawaii.  Kawika will introduce the traditional practise of Ho'oponopono; described as a ‘process of making right through the power of forgiveness’

Uncle Shane Charles, a Yorta Yorta, Wurundjeri, Boon Wurrung man, First Peoples Assembly of Victoria member and cultural advisor at IofCA will share a vision of healing through a Traditional Owners perspective. 

Ash Dargan, a Larrakia Salt Water man from Darwin, living in Wurundjeri lands and prolific musician will share stories and protocols for deep listening.

Warren Mason, a Yuwaalaray man living in Tasmania founder of Tin Camp Studios will reflect upon his songwriting journey exploring a lifelong theme of ‘Healing Scars’

Event participants will experience heart centred leadership and a once-in-a-lifetime cultural exchange to share insights from across the world with live online participation possible.

A key part of the IofCA Community Turruk Program for 2024, the event opens the monthly series of truth telling and deep listening yarning circles aimed at building trust with First Peoples at Initiatives of Change Australia.

Tickets from $40 - $80

NB: 50 % Proceeds from the event supports First Nations speakers and scholarships in the IofCA Community Turruk Program.

About Mana O Kahiko (MOK)

MOK founded by Kumu Pa’a Kawika is dedicated to transmitting traditional knowledge and wisdom within Hawaiian cultural practices. Kawika describes “the invitation explores our way of life which has been preserved by our Ancestors through generations. Our traditional way of forgiveness is profound and can open a pathway to a life you never knew you existed.” 

In the afternoon of Saturday 23 March 2- 5 pm the MOK team will host Tin Camp Studios for a Music and Storytelling performance with Warren Mason and Ash Dargan. Then on Sunday 24 March 10 – 4 pm, twenty participants are invited to experience a full day Ho‘Oponopono immersive with MOK, in-person only. Both follow on events are hosted at the venue of Initiatives of Change Australia. There will be an opportunity to be part of an online community of practice in April.


About Initiatives of Change Australia( IofCA)

Initiatives of Change is a world-wide movement present in 60 countries committed to change-making that starts with personal transformation. In Australia, the movement has supported honest conversations with First Nations people since the 1950s. In the past four years, IofCA have been significantly growing the Community Turruk Program led by Sarah Naarden and Uncle Shane Charles. During this time, they have engaged over 25 First Nations leaders in 82 truth telling events with over 3400 registrations. The program forms part of the IofC International Trustbuilding Program which won an UN Intercultural Innovation Award in 2021.


About the collaboration

After the referendum results, the team at MOK thought it was time to extend a hand to help navigate the next steps for healing and reconciliation in Australia.  MOK invited IofCA to collaborate in the Forgiveness Circle event in March.