WHILE thousands of Fraser Coast residents mark Australia Day as a day of celebration, Lenore Kempnich sees it as a day of survival.

The Butchulla woman one of about 40 people who marched in protest of Australia Day falling on January 26.

 

Isobel Currie, Lenore Kempnich and Narmi Page at the Australia Day Protest March near Seafront Oval.
Isobel Currie, Lenore Kempnich and Narmi Page at the Australia Day Protest March near Seafront Oval. Blake Antrobus

Both Indigenous and non-Indigenous gathered on Seafront Oval about 9am and marched along the Esplanade to Torquay.

Some carried signs that read 'Change the Date' and 'Survival and Remembrance Day.'

Ms Kempnich said the push was about raising awareness of the people who also wanted to celebrate Australia Day.

 

"It means as an Indigenous person I can also celebrate this country, it's just really hard to celebrate on this day remembering what happened to our ancestors," Ms Kempnich said.

"It's not about not celebrating Australia Day, but just getting the date changed so we can move forward together.

"Our Australian history is all our history - black and white."

Ms Kempnich argued it was about getting the date changed for the right reasons, saying it "wasn't like it had been changed before."

"I think May 8 would be a great day, that's what we call each other after all," she said.

It marks the second year Butchulla locals have organised a protest on Australia Day.

Michelle Myer, a non-Indigenous local who marched in the rally, said she wanted the date changed in light of the choices made throughout history.

"I'd like to walk with them in support," Ms Myer said.

"Hopefully it will come to a referendum, where we could see what happens."