Search is on for First People to lead the game-changing Self-Determination Fund

Mar 1, 2023

The First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria has put out a call for talented people to oversee the running of the Self-Determination Fund that will help empower Traditional Owners in Victoria through the Treaty process and beyond.

Assembly Co-Chair, Bangerang and Wiradjuri Elder, Aunty Geraldine Atkinson, said the Fund and its Directors will play a key role in improving the lives of First Peoples in Victoria for generations to come.

“The Self-Determination Fund is a public charitable trust designed by First Peoples, for First Peoples. This journey to Treaty is about putting First Peoples in the driver’s seat, because we know our communities, we have the solutions. We don’t need policies imposed on us, we want the freedom and power to make our own decisions. The Self Determination is a building block to make that a reality,” said Aunty Geraldine.

The Assembly negotiated the creation of the Fund for two key reasons: to ensure that Traditional Owners are able to enter Treaty negotiations with the government on a more level playing field; and so First Peoples can build wealth and economic independence for future generations.

Interim Directors were appointed last year to oversee the establishment phase of the Fund, and now the Assembly is looking to appoint ongoing Directors – three to five Directors on staggered three-year terms – and is inviting ‘expressions of interest’ in the roles.

They are also seeking members for the Fund’s Advisory and Investment Committee whose role will include advising on the strategic direction of the Self-Determination Fund and spending priorities.

“This is an opportunity to make a real impact and be part of a game-changing project. So if you think you’ve got the right experience and skills, please get in touch!” said Aunty Geraldine.

The current Interim Directors will complete establishment work in mid-2023, so that the Self-Determination Fund is ready to start providing support and funds to First Peoples. 

“Treaty must address the disadvantage caused by invasion. Those who reaped the benefits of stolen land have been able to accumulate wealth and pass it down, while First Peoples are still paying the cost, so it’s fabulous to have this opportunity to catch up on our own terms,” said Aunty Geraldine.

Further information:

Director positions with the Self-Determination Fund open until 3 March 2023.

Advisory and Investment Committee members open until 2 March 2023.