Word Reconciliation Day

When: September 8, 2000

Where: Melbourne (Colonial Stadium and Melbourne Convention Center)


Event 1: Conference on reconciliation

A midday conference on reconciliation was held at the Melbourne Convention center and was broadcast live on television (ABC). The conference included speeches and presentations from various people including Bob Hawke and Malcome Fraser (two former Prime Ministers), Hurricane Carter, Sir Gustav Nosal (The Australian of the year), Steve Bracks (Premiere of the state of Victoria, equivalent of a Governor in the US), Achmet Dangor (CEO of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund) – and me.


Event 2: Private function

This private event was held at the Hyatt hotel in Melbourne and was a unique opportunity to have more intimate and candid conversations with Nelson Mandela in the absence of the media and the usual formalities.


Event 3: Concert

The concert was held at a football stadium (called Colonial Stadium at the time, now named Etihad Stadium). Approximately 20,000 people attended to see numerous musical acts and Nelson Mandela’s speech about reconciliation.


Adam’s Speech

Nelson Mandela Meeting young people on World Reconciliation Day (at minute 4)
Prime Minister Bob Hawke’s Speech
Celebrity Tribute Videos

Numerous celebrities and heads of state from different backgrounds and countries went out of their way to provide meaningful and heartfelt tributes specifically for this event. See a selection of them below.


Morgan Freeman

Samuel L Jackson

George Lucas

Ray Charles

Henry Kissinger

Bob Hawke

Malcome Fraser

Jack Nicklaus

John Eales

Mark Viduka

Nova Peris

Temuera Morrison

Thomas Keneally

Christopher Lee