Aboriginal heritage

Aboriginal heritage

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are advised that there may be images or names of people who are deceased in the website content and associated documentation.

The National Trust is committed to the journey of reconciliation. Our first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) was launched in 2011 along with a Statement of Commitment, and we were the first National Trust in Australia to officially commit to this journey. Since then, we have formed the Aboriginal Advisory Committee, committed to following cultural protocols with regards to Acknowledgements and Welcome to Countries, seen staff and volunteers undertake cultural awareness training and introduced dual names, such as Peninsula Farm, Wu-rut Woorat, at a number of National Trust Places.

In 2019, our second Reconciliation Action Plan was launched. This RAP focused on developing relationships, with a key goal having been to build meaningful rather than transactional relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. A big achievement of this RAP was the development of the Consultation and Engagement Framework for Noongar Boodja.

In November 2023 we launched our third Reconciliation Action Plan. This RAP aligns with the work we are undertaking at several of our places to develop Cultural Landscape Plans, so key themes relate to storytelling, shared histories and connection to Place and Country.

National Trust Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan November 2023 – October 2025

A smoking ceremony at a National Trust place.

The Trust specifically aims to increase the knowledge, awareness, understanding and commitment to Aboriginal heritage by:

  • Facilitating access to land where possible;
  • Providing a conservation and interpretation service;
  • Providing administrative, financial and governance support;
  • Using its experience to promote Aboriginal heritage, and
  • Establishing a tax-deductible appeal if required.

The National Trust’s approach provides an effective governance model and has been recognised with grant funding and sponsorship funds provided to the Trust for the Foundations from Lotterywest, State and Federal Government departments and BHP Billiton.

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