Ben Mitchell (Co-Chair)

Ben Mitchell (Co-Chair) at the 2015 National NAIDOC Awards

Who’s your mob and where were you raised?

English, Scotish & Merriam and Mualgal Peoples of the Eastern and Western Torres Straits respectively.  Born and Raised in Cairns - Far North Queensland with two sets of grandparents. Feeling very blessed.

How long have you been a member of the NAIDOC Committee?

Since 2006

What does NAIDOC mean to you?

NAIDOC allows me to reflect and appreciate the great sacrifice of our forefathers that paid a price to allow us to be beneficiaries of the blessing of a standard of life that we now enjoy. It helps me remember who we are and where we come from.  NAIDOC allows me to invite my friends to come and see – Bring all the good that you have and see if we can add to your knowledge and understanding of our people.

How will you be celebrating NAIDOC Week?

With Family and friends attending NAIDOC week activities. – A lot of food!!!  And holding family history workshops with our mob to help them research and find our ancestors.

Outside of NAIDOC what are your passions?

Family Time with my wife and 8 children.  Every week we have Family Home Evening on Monday night where we meet together as a family and hold family council, instruction and planning.  Friday night is always date night with my wife of 20 years. Saturday is a Family Activity Day and Sunday is our Sabbath Day where we worship our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and seek to Make the Sabbath a delight.  My family is my Passion!!!

Fun fact – what don’t we know about you?

I had no money to buy a wedding ring when we were married and we did not want to go into debt.  So after being married for 2 years I was invited by a good friend all expenses paid and travelled to the USA in the summer and worked as a salesperson selling pest control to residential homes in Florida for three months. I was able to save up for a wedding ring and purchased it with cash, in the USA and came home and presented it to my eternal companion.  This wedding ring has been the symbol of Love and responsibility.  A motto that I learnt from my grandfather taught – “No greater Success in life can compensate for Failure in the home – Marriage is more than just love for each other and link the chains of the generations… In marriage you are placed at a post of responsibility – Families are forever!!