Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Country
Welcome to Country and Acknowledgment of Country guide includes the basic protocols involved in conducting a Welcome to Country or Acknowledgement of Country.
The protocols support you to maintain meaningful relationships with your local Koorie communities.
Download the guide to Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Country (docx - 1 (docx - 3.6mb)
The guide has been developed in partnership with the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association.
More information is available on the Department policy for the use of Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Country.
Protocols for teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture
Teachers must follow protocols for teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.
The protocols seek to protect the integrity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural expressions in a way in which all Australians can engage respectfully and feel connected to this identity.
For more information, see Protocols for teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day is held on 4 August each year and is coordinated by the Secretariat for National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care.
It is a time for early childhood services and schools to celebrate the strengths and culture of Koorie children, as well as learn about the important role that community, culture and family play in the life of every Koorie child.
Resources for holding your own event
Early childhood services and schools are encouraged to hold their own event to celebrate National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day. For further information, and for resources and ideas:
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day website
Listen to Aunty Joy Murphy, who is a Wurundjeri Elder, share her Welcome to Country story
- Listen to Aboriginal students from Peninsula Specialist College, Dromana,
sing the Acknowledgement song they wrote about Bunjil the Eagle
National Voice for our Children is the national non-government peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. It works for the fulfilment of the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, in particular to ensure their safety, development and well-being. It provides activities, tools and resources for children and family services
Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency is the lead community controlled Aboriginal child and family welfare organisation in Victoria, protecting and promoting the rights of Aboriginal children and young people. They provide resources, programs and services that Aboriginal culture and encourage best parenting practices.
Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages is the peak body for Victorian Aboriginal languages, focussing on retrieving, recording and researching Aboriginal languages, and providing programs and educational tools to teach the Koorie and wider community about Victorian Aboriginal languages. They have resources including interactive digital storybooks.
Victorian Aboriginal Education Associated Incorporated is the peak Koorie community organisation for education and training in Victoria and is the Victorian Government’s principal partner in Koorie education including in the implementation of Marrung: Aboriginal Education Plan 2016-2026
Koorie Kids Shine at Kindergarten – provides resources and video stories aimed at promoting the importance of and the benefits for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children attending kindergarten.
Bunjilaka Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Melbourne Museum tells the story of survival and celebrates vibrant Koorie cultures through performances, storytelling, artwork and more.
Koorie Heritage Trust, Federation Square promotes, supports and celebrates the continuing journey of the Aboriginal people of South Eastern Australia.
Culture Victoria website includes Koorie artefacts, stories and artwork.
National Apology to Australia's Indigenous Peoples
The National Apology to Australia’s Indigenous Peoples on behalf of the Australian Parliament was delivered by the then Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, in Parliament House Canberra, on 13 February 2008.
The National Apology is a significant event in Australia’s history and the anniversary provides opportunities for schools to plan appropriate events or activities.
The full transcript and video of the speech is available on Australian Government website, see
Apology to Australia's Indigenous peoples.
For further resources including ideas for events and links to the AusVELS curriculum see:
National Apology to Australias People - School Resources (docx - 530.93kb)
Teaching Aboriginal languages
The Aboriginal Languages and Cultures Victoria website contains information on:
- setting up a school language program
- background information on language reclamation
- links to the AusVELS Aboriginal Languages, cultures and reclamation in Victorian schools
- standards P-10 and protocols
- a collection of resources and links
- sample units to assist language teams in the development of their lessons.
For more information, see Aboriginal Languages and Cultures Victoria.