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Ebony and friends at Invasion Day protest
Photograph: Rushani Epa

First Nations organisations and social justice campaigns you can support

There are many ways to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities

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The global Black Lives Matter movement in mid-2020 following the death of American man George Floyd sparked protests and demonstrations around the world and spurred on acknowledgement of the race-related injustices that continue to take place in this country against its original inhabitants, too. If you are one of the many people who posted a black square to show your support for the Black Lives Matter movement, it’s important to follow this up with action and education.

It’s important that every single Australian is reading, learning, doing research, speaking up and donating to causes that work to minimise everyday injustices and make serious moves to change institutionalised racism.

We’ve gathered together a list of some of the charities and organisations supporting Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and PoC voices around Australia and the world. If you aren’t in a position to help financially, there are other ways you can show your support. Read on to learn how to provide financial support, get to know these organisations or get involved in their vital work. 

Local organisations to support

Aboriginal Legal Service

The Aboriginal Legal Service was established in 1940 in Redfern, Sydney as the first Aboriginal Legal Service in Australia. Today the ALS works to acknowledge the importance of Aboriginal people in the building, designing and delivering of services to the community with legal work in criminal law, children’s care and protection law and family law. The Victorian chapter of the ALS also provides referrals, advice and information, duty work and casework to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Victoria. 

Make a donation to the Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW and ACT) here or get involved by following ALSNSWACT on Facebook

Make a donation to the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service here.

ANTaR

ANTaR is an independent, non-government organisation that works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and leaders on both rights and reconciliation issues. The organisation has been running since 1997 and is committed to empowering the community and speaking up about injustice and inequality. 

Make a donation to ANTaR here or sign up to stay informed on local issues. 

North Australian Aboriginal Justice Organisation

The North Australian Aboriginal Justice Organisation is a Northern Territory-based organisation that offers legal services to Aboriginal people in the north. They cover criminal and civil law, but also make sure that Aboriginal people have access to high-quality and culturally competent legal services. 

You can donate to support NAAJA services here.

Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Women’s Council 

NPY Women’s Council works to deliver health, social and cultural services for Anangu people. The council was started in the late 1970s as an advocacy body to give Anangu women a voice and representation in the conversations that concern land rights, policy and cultural affairs. Today, the council is directed by Aboriginal women across 26 desert communities in the broad cross-border regions of WA, SA and the NT. 

Donate to the NPY Women’s Council here

Pay The Rent Grassroots Collective

Pay The Rent program was organised by First Nations and non-First Nations people working together, as the Pay The Rent Grassroots Collective. The purpose of the program is to acknowledge the numerous injustices committed against First Nations people, and the role that settlers have in working towards justice, truth, equality and liberation for First Nations people. One such way is by paying the very overdue rent that is owed to First Nations people with all funds handled by Aboriginal people and contributed directly to grassroots causes and campaigns with a focus on protecting First Nations rights, and practical support such as a Funeral Fund.

Pay the rent here.

Seed

Seed is the country’s first youth-based Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander climate justice network. The organisation’s vision is of a fair and sustainable future that has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and communities in mind. 

Donate to Seed here and find out how you can take action right now

RECOMMENDED: Read our interview with Seed’s Victorian state coordinator Christopher Jakobi

Sisters Inside

This independent community organisation was established in Queensland in 1992 and advocates for the collective human rights of women and girls in prison, as well as their families. Sisters Inside provides services to address the individual needs of those incarcerated. The team raised funds used to release people from prison and pay court debts so they are not imprisoned. 

Donate to Sisters Inside here

BlaQ Aboriginal Corporation

This Sydney-based organisation was established as a collective response to the identified need for strengthened visibility of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBTQIA+ community. They help young queer Indigenous people to find community by facilitating social events and also do lots of behind-the-scenes work. Make a donation here.

Black Rainbow

Black Rainbow is a non-profit social enterprise and an advocacy platform for LGBTQIA+ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The organisation is Indigenous owned and operated and supports individuals through community projects and initiatives like the Contagion of Love project. This offers self-identifying LGBTQIA people of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community micro-grants.

You can donate directly here.

Change the Record

This is a coalition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations working towards the de-incarceration of Indigenous people in Australia. You can read Change the Record’s recent report, Critical Condition – which looks into the impact of Covid-19 policies, policing and prisons on First Nations communities. Change the Record also has a simple to use email template that allows you to contact your local MP about policy change. 

You can support the organisation’s crucial work by making a donation here.

Koorie Youth Council

The Koorie Youth Council is a representative body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in Victoria that advocates to the government and community. In May 2020, the group took its Koorie Youth Summit online to create space for Indigenous young people and amplify their voices. 

You can follow Koorie Youth Council on Instagram and Facebook

Supply Nation

This is Australia’s leading database of verified Indigenous businesses. If your workplace is after catering, stationary, office supplies or even services like facilities management or education and training, you can direct them here to keep up the corporate social responsibility. 

Head to the website to search by name, service or category.

Gunawirra

Gunawirra is a non-profit based out of Sydney offering programs for Indigenous parents and young children. The charity works with mothers groups to connect mums and bubs to culture, as well as offering art therapy, speech therapy, nutrition and care packs for predominantly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander preschools in regional New South Wales. 

You can support them via the website

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