First Nations Reconciliation

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Find out more about Council’s commitments to Reconciliation, local Traditional Owner groups and First Nations organisations, upcoming events and other resources. 

Council's commitments to Reconciliation

Surf Coast Shire Council is committed to walking with Traditional Owners and First Nations people in our community towards Reconciliation. Find out more about our journey:


Council resolutions


  • National Reconciliation Week (annually)
  • National NAIDOC Week (annually)
  • Pilk Purriyn January 26 truth telling event

Council supports The Voice

On 26 April 2023, Surf Coast Shire Council voted to publically support constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people through a Voice to Parliament enshrined in the Australian Constitution (The Voice).

Council committed to providing clear, unambiguous information for the community, enabling residents to make a considered and informed choice in the referendum. 

Find out more about the Voice to Parliament

Registered Aboriginal Parties

Registered Aboriginal Parties are Traditional Owner groups legally recognised under the Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006. They are the primary guardians, keepers and knowledge holders, with responsibilities for managing and protecting Aboriginal Cultural Heritage on Country.

Eastern Maar Aboriginal Corporation


Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation


About Registered Aboriginal Parties 

Find out more at Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council.

First Nations organisations and services

Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative

Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative was established in 1980 to provide culturally appropriate programs, support and services for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living within the Geelong, Bellarine, Surf Coast and Colac regions.

The Co-operative is focused on building and maintaining strong community, strong culture, and strong country.

Find out more about Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative.

Narana Aboriginal Cultural Centre 

'Narana' means a deep listening and understanding. Our vision is to promote Reconciliation between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people by developing a better understanding of culture through community connections. 

At Narana you will find a retail store, cafe, native garden, exhibition centre, art gallery and playground.

Find out more about Narana Aboriginal Cultural Centre.


Meaning ‘to dance’ in Wadawurrung, Ngarrimili was established to nurture and support business and entrepreneurship opportunities amongst Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Victoria.

Search the Blak Business Directory of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander owned businesses in a wide variety of industries. 

Find out more about Ngarrimili.


NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia in the first week of July each year (Sunday to Sunday), to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth.

The theme for NAIDOC Week 2023 (2 to 9 July) is For Our Elders.

You can support and get to know your local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander communities through activities and events held across the country. 

Find out more at NAIDOC.

Local events 2023

Council's NAIDOC Week event with Dr Jenny Murray-Jones


National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week takes place from 27 May to 3 June each year, which follows National Sorry Day on 26 May.

National Reconciliation Week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia. 

Council marks Reconciliation Week every year with a community event. These have included:

  • 2023 Be A Voice For Generations - with guest speakers Wadawurrung woman Corrina Eccles and Kaurareg Aboriginal and Kalkalgal, Erubamle Torres Strait Islander man Thomas Mayo.
  • 2022 Be Brave. Make Change. - with guest speakers Worimi man Gerard Black and Adnyamathanha woman Marsha Uppill.


Find out more at Reconciliation Australia.

Reconciliation Action Plans

Since 2006, Reconciliation Action Plans have enabled organisations to sustainably and strategically take meaningful action to advance reconciliation.

Based around the core pillars of relationships, respect and opportunities, Reconciliation Action Plans provide tangible and substantive benefits for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, increasing economic equity and supporting First Nations self-determination. 

Find out more at Reconciliation Australia.

For more information contact Council via email or phone 5261 0600.