Each year on 26 May, National Sorry Day acknowledges the mistreatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who were forcibly removed from their families. Separated from culture, community and country, they are known as members of the Stolen Generations.
VACCA's Link-Up Victoria program provides support services to members of the Stolen Generations to help them find their family and reclaim their Aboriginal identity and heritage. Link-Up also assists family to locate members of the Stolen Generations, with the aim of reuniting families to encourage healing through connection to community, country and culture.
Support for the Stolen Generations
Link-Up supports members of the Stolen Generations by providing access to family records, counselling, cultural healing programs and activities, as well as reunions between Aboriginal people who were adopted, fostered or placed in an institution with their families, assisting them to reconnect with their culture, communities and traditional country.
As the only Victorian service which provides reunions for members of the Stolen Generations, Bev Murray, Link-Up Victoria Program Manager, says they are "a profoundly healing experience for many of the Stolen Generations mob we work with. We've reunited people with family who have waited for years for them to come back home."
More work to be done
Helping members of the Stolen Generations to find and reunite with family, reconnect to culture and proudly walk their Country and reclaim their Aboriginal identity is the first step for many know who they are, where they came from, and who they belong to.
Through commemorative events, educational resources about the Stolen Generations to support truth-telling in schools and universities, and the placement of markers in cities and towns across Victoria we can continue to encourage conversations about the nation’s history and acknowledge the trauma faced by those who continue to feel the impacts of being removed from family, culture and country.
On National Sorry Day we are also reminded that it still isn’t over - we are still bringing our mob back home, still bringing families together, and there is still a lot of healing to do.
Learn more about Link-Up Victoria’s services.