Melbourne Demons Announce Name Change To Celebrate Indigenous History
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AFL's Melbourne Football Club will temporarily change their name to Narrm Football Club to honour indigenous history and culture.
News.com.au reports the change name will occur during the Sir Doug Nicholls Round later this month.
Narrm is the name for Melbourne in the Woiwurrung language, encouraging AFL fans to learn about the history of first nations people while prompting them to have conversations about the traditional owners of the country.
As part of the rebrand, Melbourne has created a new logo, which will be across all its digital platforms, including its website, social media and broadcast throughout rounds 10 and 11 and the next AFLW season.
Unveiling Narrm Football Club. ✨— Melbourne Demons (@melbournefc) May 1, 2022
For the 2022 AFL Sir Doug Nicholls Round + AFLW Indigenous Round celebrations, Melbourne will rebrand itself with the Aboriginal name for Melbourne, Narrm.
📝 | https://t.co/1Anw5rnQgB pic.twitter.com/WXlWrSD8TH
Merchandise is also designed by Wurundjeri/Dja Dja Wurrung artist Ky-ya Nicholson Ward to celebrate Wurundjeri culture.
Melbourne CEO Gary Pert stated via the team’s website: “Today is an exciting day, as we announce Narrm Football Club to our members, supporters and the wider football community.
“This initiative has been a focus of our RAP Committee for the past two years and is as much about acknowledgement and education as it is celebration.”
Pert also said the club would continue to use the sport to educate their fans about indigenous culture while honouring an important part of history.
Why Narrm Football Club?— Melbourne Demons (@melbournefc) May 3, 2022
Narrm, Naarm + Nairm are all commonly used + accepted, but after consulting with Wurundjeri Elders, we have opted + were given approval to use ‘Narrm’.
Visit our Narrm Hub to learn more 👉 https://t.co/uqB57fxNYc
He concluded: “Our vision for reconciliation is, through AFL, to unite Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with non-Indigenous people, to understand and embrace history, culture and community.
“We hope with the Narrm Football Club initiative, we can continue to do just that and work towards a fully reconciled Australia.”
All-Australian defender and Gunbalanya and Larrakia player Steven May welcomed the name change as it was a ‘special’ moment to be recognised during the rounds.
“It’s something I never really thought was going to happen,” he told news.com.au.
“Extremely proud, is probably the first word that comes to mind. Just to be recognised during those two rounds is always special for our friends and family back home.
“We get to wear the Indigenous guernsey and now to be called an Indigenous name like Narrm for a couple of weeks I think is really special. It’s a great initiative by the footy club.”
The Sir Doug Nicholls round is named after the legendary player, who played 54 games for Fitzroy and was the first Aboriginal to be knighted.
Nicholls is recognised for capturing the reconciliation spirit and his commitment to advocating for Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander people.