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Our Reconciliation Journey

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Our commitment to reconciliation

Griefline is committed to listening, learning, and taking tangible steps towards reconciliation. We are proud to have submitted the first draft of our Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) to Reconciliation Australia, outlining the actionable steps we are taking to extend inclusive, culturally respectful, and informed support to grieving First Nations people and communities. Now more than ever, we need to tackle reconciliation: in treaty making, truth-telling, education, and combating racism. We need connection, respect, action, and change. 

Acknowledgement of Country

Griefline acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we live and work, and of the many different nations across Australia. We pay our respects to the Elders, past and present, as the bearers of the memories, the traditions, the cultures, and the spiritual well-being of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the nation. We recognise their continuing connection to land, water, sky, and communities and express gratitude that we can all share this land today. We share the sorrow for the costs of that sharing, and in the spirit of reconciliation, we have hope that we can move together toward healing and a connected future. We affirm that this land was, is, and will always be Aboriginal land. We stand with them in acknowledging this truth. 

Our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)

Griefline acknowledges the deep connections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to land, culture, ancestors, and lore. We support their right to self-determination, cultural preservation, and equitable opportunities. To become a more reconciled nation, Griefline acknowledges the historical injustices that have harmed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and we are committed to an ongoing process of active engagement and deep listening to foster stronger connections and healing. 

Implementing our RAP

We recognise that reconciliation is a journey, which, as an organisation, we have only just begun. Our values guide our actions and non-actions, and we activate these values through programs and services. Our approach to implementing our RAP will be guided by our values of courage, compassion, and connection. 

We confront uncomfortable truths, including historical injustices, systemic inequalities, and personal biases. Courage is needed to acknowledge and address these issues openly and honestly. 

We foster understanding, empathy, and healing between individuals and communities who have been affected by historical and ongoing injustices.  

We build and nurture meaningful connections between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, creating spaces for dialogue, collaboration, and relationship-building. 

Our reconciliation journey to date

Griefline’s RAP Working Group, established in 2023, is designed to be ever-evolving, with membership revisited each year to ensure a manageable, sustainable, and whole-of-organisation approach. This dynamic group collectively defined its Terms of Reference, which are reviewed annually and outline responsibilities that include overseeing the development, approval, and implementation of Griefline’s Reflect RAP.

The RAP Working Group consists of a diverse mix of staff from all levels of the organisation, including volunteers, client-facing staff, and executive management. To maintain active and engaged implementation, the group keeps an active action register, promoting accountability and engagement throughout the process. 

Reconciliation activities and initiatives

The Griefline team has been actively engaged in various reconciliation activities and initiatives, including:  

  • Development of an internal cultural awareness and learning program.
  • Participation in viewings of documentaries “The Last Daughter” and Kinchella Boys Home “We Were Just Little Boys” culminating in personal reflections and group discussion forums.
  • Collaboration with Supply Nation to distribute Christmas gifts to all employees. 
  • Visits to significant cultural sites as part of new employee induction. 
  • Publication of an organisational statement in support of a Yes vote for a First Nations Voice to Parliament. 
  • Active involvement in community events on January 26th, 2024. 
  • Revision of our organisational Acknowledgement of Country, incorporating a grief and loss context. 

Unveiling our artwork from The Torch

The Torch provides arts vocational support to Indigenous offenders and ex-offenders in Victoria through its Indigenous Arts in Prisons and Community program. 

The Torch supports Indigenous men and women, both in prisons and post-release in Victoria, to explore their indigenous culture and identity through practicing art. 

Through our Reflect RAP process, the Griefline team has engaged in reflection on the grief and trauma experienced by First Nations Australians. Through this process, we have identified aspects of our communications and program structure that have not been considered culturally inclusive or inviting, based on feedback from individuals who identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.  

Our Reflect RAP outlines the steps we are taking to enhance our communications and operations to make them more inclusive and culturally informed. As part of this process, we are thrilled to unveil the magnificent artwork we recently acquired from The Torch. This artwork is licensed by Griefline for integration into our visual communications.

About the artwork 

Luke Mc  

Wulgurukaba  

Southern Songlines #3, 2024  

Acrylic on canvas  

Songlines are ways that information is passed between tribes and generations. They can be dance, music, stories or artwork. Songlines teach us love and law. They enable us to navigate the land, teach us creations stories and give important information relating to seasonal hunting and gathering, Custodians of the lands and the right time to burn the land. This series of paintings is my interpretation of Songlines. 

For Griefline, the artwork represents a vibrant expression of culture, history, and resilience. Each stroke carries the weight of tradition and the wisdom of generations past, inviting us to embark on a journey of understanding and healing. 

At the heart of Griefline’s mission lies the belief in the power of storytelling and connection to navigate the complexities of grief. The concept of Songlines, as beautifully depicted in the artwork, mirrors this ethos. Just as Songlines serve as pathways for the transmission of knowledge and wisdom among Aboriginal nations and across generations, Griefline serves as a conduit for fostering courageous conversations and offering community support in times of loss. 

The artist’s interpretation of Songlines embodies the essence of love, law, and communal harmony. The painting not only offers a visual representation of cultural heritage but also serves as poignant reminders of the interconnectedness of life, loss, and growth. By integrating this artwork into our visual communications, we honour the resilience of Indigenous cultures and underscore the universality of grief experiences. 

Through the vibrant colours and intricate symbolism of the artwork, we invite our community to embrace their grief journey as a sacred Songline, filled with stories of strength, adaptation, and renewal. Just as the Songlines guide Custodians of the lands, this painting guides us toward understanding, acceptance, and ultimately, transformation. 

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