William Ferguson Memorial Statue

$3,800 of $41,000 goal

Raised by 59 people in 13 months
William 'Bill' Ferguson (1882 - 1950), one of Australia's most significant early to mid 20th century Aboriginal activists, was born on Warangesda Mission at Darlington Point, NSW, to a Scottish father and a Wiradjuri mother.

Along with other key Aboriginal activists of the 1920s and 1930s,  Ferguson was concerned at the increasing power wielded by New South Wales Aborigines' Protection Board over Aboriginal communities.

This led Ferguson to hold a public meeting at the Masonic Hall in Dubbo, NSW, on 27 June, 1937, calling for the establishment of the Aborigines' Progressive Association. This action was one of the first Aboriginal-initiated civil rights initiatives in Australia. 

The following year Ferguson and his peers, William Cooper and Jack Patten, organised the Day of Mourning. Held on 26 January at Australian Hall, Sydney, this momentous occasion shone a spotlight on the maltreatment of Aboriginal peoples throughout 150 years of colonisation. Noted as 'the first national civil rights gathering and represents the most clearly identifiable beginning of the contemporary Aboriginal political movement’.

Ferguson dedicated his life to fighting for his people, initiating and/or participating in significant Aboriginal rights actions up to his death on 4 January, 1950 at Dubbo Base Hospital.

Eight decades after Ferguson established the Aborigines' Progressive Association, an action group comprising his descendants and supporters are raising funds to erect a statue commemorating this great Aboriginal and civil rights forerunner.

The statue will be a testament to Ferguson's lifetime commitment to his people and also provide inspiration for future generations of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people to work together to achieve social justice and equity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

Your contribution will help make this dream a reality and ensure that an Aboriginal cultural warrior's lifelong dedication to his people and fight for self-determination is acknowledged and honoured with a memorial statue in his hometown of Dubbo, near the site of Ferguson's first civil rights action.

A fundraising event is also being held at Australia Hall, Sydney, 150 - 152 Elizabeth Street, Sydney, 6 pm start, on 4 November, 2017. For further information please contact:

Ruth Waite, 02 656 68040, ruthkba@gmail.com
Meg Huddleston, 0400 382 084, bobmeg@tpg.com.au
Willie Ferguson, 0427 281 090
Rod Towney, 0418 611 572

Further reading:
http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/ferguson-william-bill-6160 http://indigenousrights.net.au/people/pagination/william_ferguson  https://dictionaryofsydney.org/entry/aborigines_progressive_association 
https://www.dubbophotonews.com.au/news/general-news/people/item/4498-long-road-to-justice-bill-ferguson-1882-1950-inspiring-civil-rights-leader  http://www.dailyliberal.com.au/story/3192255/aboriginal-hero-to-be-immortalised-at-dubbo/ 

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Every little bit helps, keep posting to your networks please. Thank you!
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Yay, over the $3K mark on GoFundMe, raised $36K, so more than halfway there. Keep it going with your networks. Many many thanks!
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Just wanted to let people know that $35,000 has been raised so far, with $30,000 still needed. Please let your networks know, many thanks!
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Hi all, we've raised $24,000, which is fantastic. But we still need to raise the remaining $41,000, so please share with your networks. Thank you all for your support!
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$3,800 of $41,000 goal

Raised by 59 people in 13 months
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