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© 2019 Koon-Dee Woonga-gat Toor-rong

Key Event & Letter 

Handover event, Monday 19th November, 12-2.00pm

 

This event was held to mark the establishment and handover of funds from Towards a Just Society Fund to Koondee Woonga-gat Toor-rong, a new Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community-Led Fund.

It began at the offices of the Australian Communities Foundation in Wellington Parade, East Melbourne and involved walking over to the scar tree by the MCG for a special handover ceremony. Aunty Diane Kerr provided a Welcome to Country and Hayden Raysmith (AM) was the master of ceremonies. In the audience were representatives of the Australian Communities Foundation, the Fellowship for Indigenous Leadership and Woor-Dungin as well family representatives and contributors to the Towards A Just Society Fund and the Board of Koondee Woonga-gat Toor-rong.

Julia Spindler, the co-founder (with her late husband, Sid Spindler) of Towards a Just Society Fund, read a letter announcing the transfer and a copy was received with pleasure by Terori Hareko-Samios on behalf of the Koondee Woonga-gat Board. Acknowledged in the process also were the significant contributions to the new entity by the BB and A Miller, and Williams sub-funds and the estate of the late Les Dalton amongst other supporters. A lovely atmosphere of good will and optimism was felt by everyone, with the ceremony dignified by the enduring presence of the ancient scar tree.

Letter presented to the Board of Koondee Woonga-gat Toor-rong, at the official Handover event from Towards a Just Society Fund members to the Board of Koondee Woonga-gat Toor-rong. The event took place on 19th November, 2018, by the scar tree in the MCG carpark. Extract:

 

Dear Board members,

 

On behalf of the members of the Towards a Just Society Fund, I have much pleasure in confirming our intention to transfer the accumulated donations of TJSF members to Koondee Woonga-gat Toor-rong.

 

Today’s handover event recognises the over twelve months of commitment and planning by yourselves and other Woor-Dungin partners, Fellowship for Indigenous Leadership alumni and Towards A Just Society Fund associates, which we greatly respect.

 

This point could not have been reached without the strong contributions of Woor-Dungin in hosting the administrative support aspects, the Fellowship for Indigenous Leadership, and the Australian Communities Foundation in providing the umbrella structure and detailed support.

 

From the time of its founding in 2002, TJSF members have had a strong awareness of the dispossession of Aboriginal communities, particularly through the eyes of co-founder Sid Spindler and early member, Halina Strnad, who were acutely aware from their own experiences of social injustice and perspectives as migrants.

 

TJSF members see this handing over of funds as a highly appropriate action in the ongoing journey of supporting the empowerment and self-determination of Aboriginal communities, particularly in recognition of Aboriginal peoples’ rights as the original inhabitants and custodians of the land we all now occupy and the consequent need for reparation.

 

We offer our best wishes for your endeavour, and any further support you may require.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Julia Spindler

TJSF co-founder