ACTCOSS Reconciliation Action Plan
4 September 2023
Our vision for reconciliation
The ACT Council of Social Service’s (ACTCOSS) vision is for Canberra to be a just, safe and sustainable community in which everyone has the opportunity for self-determination and a fair share of resources and services. ACTCOSS believes that true equity and social justice cannot be achieved until Australia acknowledges and addresses its history of invasion, colonisation, and dispossession of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lands. For this purpose, we will continue to place the achievement of sovereignty, justice and self-determination for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples at the forefront of our advocacy.
This Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) will help ACTCOSS to realising our vision through:
- Cultivating an appreciation and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures to staff, members, and other stakeholders;
- Growing representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in ACTCOSS membership and positions of influence; and
- Providing additional support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and community sector workers to engage in ACTCOSS programs and advocacy.
The ACTCOSS RAP and the five dimensions of reconciliation provide key guidance and oversight to ensure that justice and reconciliation is at the forefront of the organisation’s work. Beyond developing ACTCOSS’s own culture and behaviours, we are also focused on taking actions that will positively influence our members, stakeholders, and the people of the ACT to drive reconciliation outcomes.
Our RAP artwork
‘Connected Communities’ by Rachelle Kelly-Church
This piece speaks about ACTCOSS and its role in the community. The Centre Circle represents ACTCOSS, surrounded by its members. The two large shapes in the corners represent ACTCOSSs values, purpose and work and is underpinned by self determination. The red and blue circles are the many different communities and organisations ACTCOSS seeks to advocate for and represent, they are all connected. At the core, and running through everything ACTCOSS does, is always recognising justice and equality for First Nations people must come first.
Rachelle is a Barkindji woman with family ties to Wilcannia, Far West NSW. Rachelle is a wife and mother and stepum of six, studies part time, and also Heads up the Gulanga Program at ACTCOSS. Rachelle has been living and working on Ngunnawal Country most of her life. Rachelle enjoys painting to connect to culture and as a form of healing.