The document was written by the Department of Environment and Energy in consultation with over 15 Indigenous and non-Indigenous organisations from government, business, and not-forprofit sectors.
This document encourages anyone considering a partnership with Indigenous organisations to develop their cultural awareness and competency. Developing context around Aboriginal and/or Torres Islander people’s different needs and experiences should be taken into account when partnering. Training undertaken is best done specific for the organisation’s location and not just as a one-off event in order to contribute meaningfully to the journey towards cultural competency.
- The report recommends the development of a clear purpose for seeking to include an Indigenous group or organisation in a partnership. This purpose goes beyond the need to ‘tick a box’ for engagement. Know why you are approaching the organisation or community to explore a potential partnership. Consider the value of the Indigenous involvement and what the partnership can offer to the Indigenous group or organisation in exchange. Be careful not to pre-determine the partnership form, process or objectives before discussing this as this needs to be Indigenous-led. Seek feedback and guidance on the identified value and benefits, to guide the partnership development.
- It is essential to get in contact with the right group or organisation for the geographic region and subject matter of engagement, and to develop a general understanding of the local context.
- The legacy of the partnership needs to be considered beyond the life of the projects in order for relationships and trust to be sustained. This is important to create a sense of togetherness and joining as a part of a wider Australian community.