Letter from the CEO
At VicHealth we are committed to following the lead of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Victorians as they work to improve the health and wellbeing of their communities.
I am proud to announce the launch of VicHealth’s Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), which has received endorsement from Reconciliation Australia. This plan was created in collaboration with Traditional Owners from Victoria, representatives from community-controlled organisations and VicHealth stakeholders and staff members, with strong support and ongoing engagement from our Board.
From now till 2022, VicHealth will be held accountable to our commitment that health, respect and equity is to be rightfully restored to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Since 2013, VicHealth has been on a journey to work towards reconciliation, when we released our inaugural RAP. Following this initial step, we learnt the importance of building meaningful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members. Listening, learning and being guided by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders is key to this next step in our reconciliation journey.
We will work to improve representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Victorians in our staff and governance structures and embed their voices into our day-to-day work. By acknowledging that most of our staff are from non- Indigenous backgrounds, we will build our collective cultural knowledge through meaningful engagement and truth-telling with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Victorians.
At VicHealth, we have had the opportunity to support innovative and trailblazing organisations including Strong Brother, Strong Sister, Barpirdhila Foundation’s Youth Program and the production of Point + Be Proud, a documentary on Aboriginal AFL legend Nicky Winmar and his battle with racism and mental health. In the coming years, we hope to grow partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led organisations and amplify their voices.
We look forward to learning and growing as an organisation as we continue this crucial and invaluable journey of reconciliation.
Dr Sandro Demaio