Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Healing Foundation for Stolen Generations

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Kevin Rudd, Prime Minister
    The Hon Nicola Roxon MP, Minister for Health and Ageing

The Australian Government has appointed eminent Australians, Professor Lowitja O’Donoghue and Mr Gregory Phillips, to establish a Foundation to address trauma and healing in Indigenous communities, with a strong focus on the unique needs of Stolen Generations.

The Foundation will be established to provide practical and innovative healing services, as well as training and research.

Professor O’Donoghue is a senior Stolen Generations member and former Australian of the Year and Mr Phillips is an academic with recognised expertise in healing and trauma.

They will head up an interim team which will work with Indigenous Australians to ensure broad ownership and support for the Foundation.

The Apology to Australia’s Indigenous people, in particular to the Stolen Generations, has created a new climate of hope and commitment.

It was a first step to build a bridge of respect between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and generate the mutual trust and respect needed for closing the gap.

We must keep moving forward. We must help people to heal if all Australians are to have a better future.

We understand the vital role of healing in expanding people’s life chances.

We also understand the vital role of pride in culture in shaping people’s aspirations and choices.

The Foundation will help develop new approaches to healing the pain caused by past governments’ laws, policies and practices.

The Government is also expanding the Link Up program with 11 more Link Up Caseworkers and five more administrative staff to help more members of the Stolen Generations trace, locate and reunite with their families.

By expanding the program, we aim to bring more people together with an extra 351 family reunions and around 100 ‘Return to Country’ reunions.

Funding for the Foundation will be announced in the 2009-10 Budget context.