The Aboriginal Culture, Heritage & Arts Association of NSW has received $200,000 in the latest Create NSW funding round.
The funding will support ACHAA as a standalone Peak Body, independent of Museums & Galleries of NSW.
ACHAA has also been recognised as a full member of the NSW Coalition of Aboriginal Peak Organisations (CAPO) after a year as an interim affiliate member.
M&G NSW, alongside Create NSW, has been instrumental in the consultations and the founding of ACHAA, which was incorporated in 2014. Since that time, M&G NSW has continued to support ACHAA through staffing resources for its projects and programming.
In thanking M&G NSW and Create NSW, ACHAA Chairperson Jeanette Crew OAM of the Yarkuwa Indigenous Knowledge Centre Deniliquin said both developments were significant recognition for the important work of ACHAA.
“When ACHAA was established in 2014, there were eight core members, representing Aboriginal community-controlled cultural spaces, many of which did not know of the existence of the other members,” she said. “Now we have 20 core members representing cultural centres, knowledge and language centres and Aboriginal galleries and museums that network regularly to share ideas and issues.
“We also have 23 Associate Members, which includes major Sydney Cultural Institutions and regional galleries and museums with Aboriginal collections, staff and community engagement, and we acknowledge and thank them for their long term support of ACHAA’s aims and values.”
Mrs Crew said that while this latest funding from Create NSW was welcome, there was still a long way to go in the broader recognition of the value of NSW Aboriginal culture, heritage and arts.
“Increasingly, Government department, agencies and other peaks are seeking to include ACHAA and its members in consultations as community representatives, which is important,” she said. “While some of our members are moving ahead, we have other members we would like to see stabilised so they can be sustainable and develop to better represent and support their communities.
“It is still the case that many member centres do not have access to or receive the ongoing operational and employment funding found in other states. This latest ACHAA funding and recognition puts us in a better position to advocate for this on behalf of members alongside speaking up for the significance of NSW Aboriginal culture, heritage and arts.”
Two ACHAA members were also successful in the Create NSW funding round: the BAAKA Cultural Centre in Wilcannia received $60,000 for its inaugural exhibition of artists’ works, while the Merrimans Aboriginal Land Council received $46,500 for arts and culture workshops as part of the activation of the Umbarra Cultural Centre.