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Original artwork by Gunai/Kurnai Bataluk, 2019, Acrylic on canvas by Keith (Gunaikurnai/Monero people). Image shows an artwork of a Monitor in coloured in browns, yellows and reds.
July 2023


Emergency Recovery Victoria (ERV) proudly acknowledge the Traditional Owners of Victoria and their ongoing strength in practising the world’s oldest living cultures.

We recognise the diverse and unique rights and interests of Traditional Owners and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.

We also acknowledge the devastating impact of the disasters on Aboriginal Victorians and the significant impacts of these events due to the social and economic disparity and intergenerational trauma experienced by many Aboriginal people in Victoria today.

We sincerely thank all those who participated in this project and their support to enable self-determination in all aspects of Aboriginal community-led recovery.

About the Strategy

The Strategy for Aboriginal Community-led Recovery (the Strategy) guides ERV in supporting Aboriginal communities to lead their recovery. It supports the Emergency Recovery Victoria - Recovery Framework and its outcomes.

The Strategy outlines the key areas of focus for the Victorian Government as system steward in planning, coordinating and supporting emergency recovery with strong and resilient Victorian Aboriginal communities.

Aboriginal communities’ recovery is most successful when they are central to decision-making and empowered to determine their own outcomes. Their participation is crucial and a core principle for appropriate service provision and ensures they are at the centre of decision-making.

Including Aboriginal voices at the centre of community recovery is everyone’s responsibility.

The Strategy requires a whole of agency commitment for delivery. It provides an approach that realises Aboriginal community-led outcomes in recovery, in coordination with:

  • government
  • councils, and
  • delivery partners.

A case for change

Self-determination is about choice. We are committed to embedding Aboriginal self-determination into our practices to improve recovery outcomes for Aboriginal communities. The key enablers of self-determination are to:

  • Prioritise culture
  • Address racism and cultural healing
  • Transfer power and resources to communities
  • Address trauma and support healing.

We work closely with Aboriginal communities to develop their recovery solutions and encourage this practice in our service and agency partners. Enabling and embedding Aboriginal peoples’ self-determination is a significant commitment to place choice and decision-making in the hands of Aboriginal people.

Consultation with Aboriginal communities

The Strategy is informed through the generous contribution and insights shared by members of Victorian Aboriginal communities impacted by disaster and emergency in Victoria. An extensive consultation process with Victorian Aboriginal communities impacted by the Eastern Victorian Fires 2019-20 was led by the Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations throughout 2022.

Further insights were gathered following subsequent disaster events and shaped by key expertise from staff in the ERV Aboriginal Culture and Healing team.

The Strategy artwork

Gunai/Kurnai Bataluk, 2019, acrylic on canvas by Keith (Gunaikurnai/Monero people)

Original artwork - Gunai/Kurnai Bataluk, 2019. Acrylic on canvas by Keith (Gunaikurnai/Monero people). Image shows a Monitor painted as diamond-shaped line work, which is characteristic of south eastern Aboriginal designs

About the artist

Keith is a Gunaikurnai/Monero artist with cultural ties to East Gippsland in Victoria.

Keith’s paintings are defined by a bold use of colour and the diamond-shaped line work that is characteristic of south eastern Aboriginal designs. Keith has been painting for only 3 years. He finds the painting process very calming, soothing and relaxing. When he paints he feels at ease and more deeply connected to his ancestors.

Read the full Strategy

You can download the Strategy as a PDFExternal Link document or navigate through the chapters using the navigation buttons on this page.

Please contact if you require other accessible formats.

Publication chapters

Reviewed 01 August 2023

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