Our Reconciliation
Action Plan

We’re committed to furthering self determination through Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander led innovation.

Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Owners/Custodians of the lands on which we work and live on across Australia. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging. We are committed to collaboration that furthers self-determination and creates a better future for all.

We acknowledge the world is changing and that all of the challenges facing our society will be more deeply felt by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Embedding a cultural lens across all of TACSI’s work must be a priority in any strategy that is created and implemented.

Our leadership statement

We believe it’s unacceptable that systems designed to support people maintain the ongoing impacts of colonisation and intergenerational trauma. We have a responsibility to be part of this change.

Standing in our commitment, we respect that we, TACSI, as individuals and as a whole have a lot to learn about how to further self-determination. Each step must begin with acknowledging the true history of harm done to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

In our choices, we seek to learn the many ways to let go of power, and building deep, authentic and meaningful partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, organisations and communities is a critical part of this journey as well. Walking together and with compassion, we seek to learn from and build on over 70,000 years of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander experience and wisdom.

Without having all the answers, we are moving forward. We have the conviction that disrupting disadvantage, reaching the heart of intergenerational trauma and furthering self-determination is achieved by inspiring, influencing and unlocking the potential people hold. We will achieve this by building our connection and responsibility to one another.

Our RAP intention

We’ve developed our Reflect RAP as a key action to deepen and progress our collective and individual journey toward reconciliation, and play our part in working toward reconciliation in Australia. Additionally, our new strategy embedding ‘Furthering Self-Determination’ throughout our entire practice and all action areas will be supported by the RAP. This focus area works toward social innovation that is led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and communities.

mockup of the RAP

Our RAP implementation approach

We’ve established the current RAP Working Group to lead the implementation of our Reflect RAP and bring the broader organisation and our cultural advisors along the journey.

The working group has two circles:

  • Core team of people who will project manage TACSI’s Reflect RAP actions
  • Key cultural, financial and leadership advisors who will be brought in at key times to increase cultural safety, guidance on decisions and approve plans.

The RAP Working Group will agree what activities staff will commit to and will act as a support should RAP guidance be needed. The aim is for all TACSI staff to be engaged in delivering RAP activities, including some who will lead the RAP implementation work, and for all non-Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff to go on a journey of increasing their own cultural awareness and safety practices through participation.

The working group will also act as an accountability measure:

  • Making sure activities and information are accessible and more culturally safe
  • Making sure activities are delegated
  • Monitoring progress of activities
  • Reporting to Reconciliation Australia

The broader organisation and external cultural advisors will be informed and consulted for guidance and feedback on key decision making and activities as our RAP journey progresses.

Elizabeth Close

Artwork for the RAP by Elizabeth Close

 

Our RAP artwork

Meet Elizabeth Close, the woman behind our RAP artwork. 

Elizabeth is a Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjara woman from the APY Lands in Central Australia.

Now based in Adelaide, Elizabeth’s arts practice has evolved from canvas beginnings to now also include large scale public art and digital design. 

Elizabeth’s work is a unique and distinct fusion of contemporary and traditional Aboriginal art, using vivid warmth to convey the landscape of the APY while also drawing upon socio-political themes of identity, forced removal policies, loss of culture and intergenerational trauma.

The artwork is based around Yarning with a Purpose, and with TACSI’s broader aims to change support systems that perpetuate continuing impacts of colonisation. As such, the artwork is profoundly informed by self determination and empowerment of First Australians. 

The creek represented by the meandering bold line through the middle, and the detail of the stones adjacent to the creek speak to concepts such as growth, agency, building capacity, trust and relationship building. The colour palette and textures speak directly to the landscape and by extension, our connection to it as First Australians. Our relationships with Country underpin our very existence.

To me, this RAP artwork tells a story of TACSI’s journey. There are parts of our journey that are still unknown; they are black and white, like in Elizabeth’s artwork. Other parts of our Journey are coming into colour as we learn and journey along the river together.

Aunty Vickey Charles, Aboriginal lead & Aunty in Residence