Message from the Chief Executive Officer, Emergency Recovery Victoria

ERV is committed to ensuring the voices of Aboriginal Victorians affected by disasters are represented in relief and recovery. This is underpinned by the Victorian Government ensuring Aboriginal communities can exercise their rights to self-determination and are empowered to develop and inform their recovery.

Our role is to support the effective preparedness, establishment and delivery of Aboriginal community-led recovery processes.

Community-led recovery is about ensuring there are strategies in place to amplify the Aboriginal community voice in government. By listening, engaging and collaborating with Aboriginal communities, we build on existing community strengths. This work is not about separating or isolating recovery approaches, it is about enhancing our current systems to be inclusive and responsive and benefit all of community.

The Strategy for Aboriginal Community-led Recovery (the Strategy) is critical to influencing recovery support processes that assist Aboriginal Victorians. This is grounded in the resilience Aboriginal communities possess to withstand the effects of a disaster, with culture being a significant protective factor in their response to trauma.

We aim to work creatively and strategically with Aboriginal communities to overcome the unique challenges and acknowledge opportunities recovery presents. This includes the commitment to building trust with Aboriginal Victorians. This work guides ERV in meeting the Victorian Government commitment to enable and address barriers to Aboriginal self-determination in recovery processes.

ERV is committed to ensuring overall recovery efforts consider and safeguard a culturally appropriate and safe recovery for Aboriginal Victorians. The Strategy guides ERV in supporting Aboriginal communities to lead their recovery, acknowledging their inherent connection to culture and Country. The Strategy is vital to educating Victorian communities of this connection and the mutual benefits gained by whole of community recovery.

Mariela Diaz
Chief Executive Officer
Emergency Recovery Victoria