CEO's Message
Hello everyone,

This is the update for goings on at the office.

Firstly I’d like to update you on the Elders Advisory Group. Last Friday at Yea Wetlands we had Daphne Yarram, a Noongarar woman conduct the facilitation of our formation of the Elders Group and we had eleven Elders come along to discuss the role that the Elders Advisory Group would look to play in advising the Board, primarily on cultural matters.

From feedback I’ve received it was a highly valuable day providing input as to how that would occur and what kind of issues would actually come up to be providing advice on. My understanding is that the conversation was going so well that it wasn’t able to be completed in the one day so it means that we are looking to put on a second day in May to ensure that the formation of the Elders Group has been put together in a way that our Elders are comfortable and supportive of being able to provide guidance and advice through that medium.

I’d also like to say a quick thank you to Daph for her facilitation. By all accounts it went really well. And also a big thank you to Sharon Briggs, our staff member at Taungurung Land and Waters for her work in bringing together our Elders and the event. It went off without a hitch and we are very grateful for the work that you have put in at the office as well.

I wanted to also quickly say we were able to secure some additional funding for the Water Policy Officer position that has been going for the last 12 months. That position it held by Alejandro Voysest. If any of you have met Alejandro, he has done some really great work in community engagement and in engaging our mob to be involved in water related issues. The Water Group, Baan Ganalina, has been highly involved in providing advice and guidance around a number of matters relating to water and Alejandro’s facilitation of that and being able to disseminate that information back through to the water authorities has been highly successful so we’re very excited that we’re able to secure additional funding for this role because he has been integral to our engagement with community and also our role in the water space.

We are advertising for a position that is the Partnerships and Engagement Coordinator and it’s primarily going to be based around the regional forestry agreements, which are currently up for renegotiation and this is some funding that’s provided by the Department of Environment Land Water & Planning. Essentially they’re wanting to partner with us to really work through the negotiations of the regional forestry agreements to ensure that we get a mutually agreeable outcome. More broadly the partnerships and engagement role will also cover off on a lot of other forestry and land management related activities as well so we’re very happy to receive this funding and my understanding is that there will be a view to continue this position on for longer than the 12 months currently contracted for, so you’ll see in the newsletter the position description and I do encourage Taungurung people to apply. We’d love to see you apply and I look forward to your applications.  

We have received some applications for the Community Engagement Officer that we advertised for last month and will be commencing some interviews in the coming weeks.

Finally, a quick Recognition and Settlement Agreement update. Last week you would have seen that perhaps in some local newspapers on Taungurung country or in The Age newspaper there was an Indigenous Land Use Agreement advertisement in The Age detailing Taungurung owners ILUA or Indigenous Land Use Agreement has been lodged and they’re now welcoming a period of three months where people might be able to provide objections or considerations to be put forward to the National Native Title Tribunal so the process is moving along, albeit a little bit slowly. So again, a lot of the activities that you will see that we’re doing now are in the lead up to, I guess our funding and where our rights officially kick in and that’s going to be more likely to be mid to late -- near the end of the calendar year so I will keep you updated as that occurs.

Obviously there’s plenty of other things that happen on a day-to-day basis, but these are some of the important things to let you know about.
So, until next month where we give you another update, we wish you all the best and have a good day.
Matthew Burns


Forests Officer

We are Hiring!

Partnerships and Engagement Coordinator (Forests)

This officer will work in partnership with DELWP, reforming Victoria’s forests management.They will also support broader partnership and engagement priorities. This position will play a lead role in facilitating Traditional Owners and DELWP to work together to:

  • develop a vision for the future management of Victoria’s forests
  • modernise the five Victorian Regional Forest Agreements, ensuring they appropriately recognise the rights of Victoria’s Traditional Owners to partner in land management and seek economic and cultural opportunities, and
  • refresh forest management planning, including greater integration with fire planning.

We are looking for an Indigenous person for this role; preferably a Taungurung person. 

The role will be part of a network of Partnerships and Engagement Coordinators across Victorian Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporations.

Position details
Partnerships and Engagement Coordinator (Forests)
Salary - VPS Level 4
Fixed term (12 months)
Located at Broadford, Vic.

Applications close on Monday 15 April 2019

Full details of this position are available from our website as follows :



We are currently seeking expressions of interest for Tanderrum which will be held 3 October this year to kick off the Melbourne Arts Festival.  If you would like to be involved, be it dance, song, making adornments or providing support to the performers, we would be very interested in hearing from you. 

Some changes have been made to the festival this year and a “Tanderrum debrief and Next Steps” meeting will be held at Ilbijerri Theatre on Saturday 13 April 2019 from 12noon to 3pm.

Rehearsals for our mob will be ongoing throughout the year with weekend camps to be held at various locations in June, July, and August.

The first weekend camp will be at Camp Jungai, Rubicon, from 21 to 23 June 2019.

The other locations and dates will be advised in due course.

There will also be all Kulin workshops, usually held in August and September, final full mob rehearsal and full-dress rehearsal usually held just before Tanderrum.  These workshops and rehearsals will be held in Melbourne at locations and dates to be advised.

If you are interested in being part of this amazing festival
please contact Sharon with your expression of interest
by 31 May 2019 to

Aboriginal Heritage Officer

Congratulations to our staff member, Taungurung man Shane Monk, on his official recognition as an Aboriginal Heritage Officer.

The indoctrination and presentation was carried out by Annitia Rynhart, for the office of the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs.

Cultural Camp

As mentioned in our previous newsletter, we will be having our first Cultural Camp for the year at Camp Jungai over the weekend of 6 & 7 April 2019. 

The primary focus of the camp will be mostly for preparation and polish of our Cultural Song & Dance group, Taungurung Ngarrgi, which we will be launching as a service that TLaWC offer to the wider community.

During the camp we will have a number of workshops around dance and song, adornment making and rope making. We will also have  cultural heritage talks and yarning around the camp fire. 

Songs in Language will be recorded for the first time and a CD produced for performances if required. 

All materials will be provided but if you have feathers, kangaroo teeth or sinew please bring with you to the camp. 

Travel Assistance will be provided to the mob in the form of a $30 gift card.
All accommodation and food will be provided over the weekend. 
We would love to see you there.

Accommodation at Camp Jungai
will be available from Friday night 5 April 2019.
It's not too late to register your attendance
but please do so by 31 March 2019
to Emily Loughron at
or call the office on 5784 1433


Sharon Briggs

Senior Projects Officer

Elders Group

We held the first Elders Meeting at Y Water Discovery Centre, Yea on Friday 15 March 2019. Discussion focused on the formation of a TLaWC Elders Group.

The meeting was facilitated by Daphne Yarrum who did a deadly job of keeping the conversations on-topic.

We had a great beginning to this discussion with continuation to be held on Friday 10 May 2019 in the Broadford office. 

I've had some positive feedback from some Elders who attended saying that it was a good meeting, where everyone had the opportunity to be heard in a respectful setting and that they are keen to continue talks around the formation of an Elders group.

Sharon Briggs

Senior Projects Officer


Electrofishing surveys in Sevens Creek

Members of the Strathbogie Ranges Steering Committee, including Taungurung representatives, visited the Sevens Creek a couple of weeks ago to learn from the work of the experts of the Arthur Rylah Institute (ARI) during their electrofishing surveys.
A quick assessment of the environmental conditions, water quality, and temperature showed that the habitat conditions are still good for supporting fish populations despite the low flows in at Gooram Falls. A fair amount of Trout Cod, Macquarie Perch, and other native species were caught; however, our country is waiting for the wet season so that the water flow in the unregulated rivers and creeks will increase improving habitat conditions for native fish.
A new axe grinding site near Ruffy in the
Hughes Creek

Last week after conducting a cultural awareness induction for the GBCMA personnel at the axe grinding site near Tarcombe in the Hughes Creek, Shane Monk was advised by one of the attendants that he knew another spot downstream in the creek with similar characteristics. The group went to the site and because of the low flows in the creek, the grinding site, and possible rock wells were easy to identify. In the following days, TLaWC personnel, revisited the site a couple of times to get footage of the site and assess the rest of the area. The location has been recorded for future registration and protection of the site features, and the footage has been used to make 3D modeling of the grinding site and rock wells.

Alexandro Voysest
Water Policy Officer


Voice of the Child

The Department of Health and Human Services would like to invite:
Aboriginal young people aged 18-25 years
to participate in a Yarning session for the Voice of the Child project.

This project aims to drive a paradigm shift at DHHS where children’s voices are consistently valued, heard and acted on, by empowering children, including Aboriginal children, to share their voices on decisions that affect them in a way that reflects their diverse cultures, histories and lived experiences.

We hope to create a new relationship between Aboriginal children and young people and government to achieve long-term generational change, improved outcomes and brings us one step closer to Aboriginal self-determination.  
The Yarning session will be held at: 
Tuesday,  26 March 2019.
9.30am - 2.30pm
Treetops Room
Melbourne Museum,
11 Nicholson Street, Carlton

Lunch and refreshments will be provided.
Young people will be compensated $100 in the form of a gift card for their time.
Young people can register for the Yarning session here.


Back Roads

ABC's 'Back Roads'
Dreaming Series

Maddie from the ABC contacted me about producing Aboriginal stories for the ABC Back Roads TV show featured on ABC iview, will be used for the ABC Kids Listen App that is shared on social media widely and be broadcast on TV here in Australia and overseas. 

She was wanting to film Elders, knowledge holders or passionate mob telling dreamtime stories or a story about a significant place on country and had a very short deadline to meet.

Maddie took advantage of the Elders meeting at the Yea Wetlands on Friday 15 March and came along to catch up with some Elders who indicated their interest in filming stories for this series. 

She also caught up with Uncle Larry Walsh on the Saturday and they travelled to the Cathedral Ranges for filming.  TLaWC will have full copyright of these productions and also a copy which we will be able to share with the mob and use as an educational and cultural resource.

Sharon Briggs
Senior Project Officer


Intern Report

For the past month, I have been studying historical records relating to the ten-year operations of the Port Phillip Protectorate System from 1839. It has been a privilege to have access to the Public Office records and also to speak with Taungurung people about their knowledge of this time. I have concentrated on the Taungurung experiences of the Goulburn Aboriginal station and the Government officials that worked there.

Much of the records tell us what we already know about the impact of European settlement, decimation of food sources, introduced diseases and conflicts between Aboriginal people and European settlers. There is also a lot of statistical information regarding the Aboriginal presence at the Goulburn Central Station. This could lead to an indication of Taungurung patterns of movement to and from the station. An extensive list of names has also been charted thanks to an 1842 register document, which may be useful for future Taungurung genealogical research.

I have been supported greatly by all the staff at the Broadford office and this has enabled me to broaden the scope of the research. 

I have read expedition accounts from Taungurung country prior to 1839. This ongoing work may add information to your rich cultural heritage. 

There is much archival content still to explore, particularly as the project extends to State Library records. It will be an exciting time for TLaWC research, especially as the State Library are seeking applications for their Cultural Research Fellowship 2019-20 program. 

It is a perfect opportunity for a Taungurung candidate to get involved, either as an individual or as part of a group.

Spencer Platten
Research Intern


Jobs & Opportunities
We have created a jobs and opportunities page on our website under the News tab.

Please feel free to send us any jobs or opportunities you think could be included. It will also have a Resources page, so likewise please send any link to

On Country
Footage from the Garden Range.

Expressions of Interest
TLaWC is seeking expressions of interest from Taungurung members who would like to perform Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremonies.

Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremonies are practices grounded in traditional lore and provide an opportunity for non-Indigenous people to recognise and pay respect to traditional owners.

If you are interested please email


26 March
Voice of the Child
Melbourne Museum

5 - 7 April

Cultural Camp
Camp Jungai

27 May - 3 June
National Reconciliation Week
2019 Theme
'Grounded in truth. Walk together with courage'

1 - 14 July
Victoria       1 to 7 July
 National       7 to 14 July

2019 Theme
'Voice, Treaty, Truth. Let's work together for a shared future.'

3 October



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