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Hey you mob! My names Breanna Browning but most people call me Bree, I am a proud Gunditjmara and Ngarrindjeri woman and I am the new Statewide Coordinator for Cultural Planning.

I have been at VACCA for 3 and a half years, however completed a student placement a year before being employed here. I have worked in several programs while being at VACCA, starting as a student placement in Cultural Planning, then moving on to Reception and Admin, Playgroup, Cultural Support Planning, Case Management, Projects/ Projects Team Leader and now my newest adventure as the Statewide Coordinator. 

I reside in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne and have lived here my whole life and am currently on The Koling – wada ngal Aboriginal Corporation Board as the youth representation. (The Koling wada-ngal Aboriginal Corporation | Wyndham City).

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Lake Alexandrina Image Source: Trip Advisor. Lake Condah Image Source: WHC UNESCO. (© Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation)

 

My passion for Cultural Plans came from my own experience of living in Out of Home Care and starting my cultural journey while living with my Aboriginal Nan.  Before living with my nan, I grew up knowing that I was Aboriginal, but not what it meant to be an Aboriginal person, I had no sense of belonging or cultural connection to both my community back on country and the community in which I lived in. Living with my Nan inspired me to start my journey to learn more about my mob and to become connected to the community where I live. 

My passion for Cultural Plans came from my own experience of living in Out of Home Care and starting my cultural journey while living with my Aboriginal Nan.

While living in Out of Home Care, the only CSP I ever saw was a template on a printed-out piece of paper, my case manager asked me if I had a CSP and if I knew what this was – I had never seen or heard of one before. Before my visit ended with my case manager, she asked me to fill out what I knew, which wasn’t much. The case manager also only asked me as they were about to close on the case as reunification was about to occur and nothing ever came from that piece of paper. I always reflect back on this and think how much a CSP would have helped me on my cultural journey if it was done correctly. While I was in the CSP space and completing CSPs, I would always think back to this experience in my life and thought about what kinds of things I would have liked to see in my Cultural Plan as a 16 year old who was on the start of her journey and add in similar items for our children and young people who were and are in similar situations, sometimes unsure where to start on their journey and/or just starting their journey. 

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Throughout my time in the Cultural Planning space, I worked closely with my Team Leader and led a restructure of the program, this consisted of putting new processes and procedures in place, working closely with both internal and external stakeholders to improve relationships and service delivery and closely tracking the input and output of CSPs. Throughout the Statewide Coordinator trial period, I was able to complete and get endorsed 17 CSPs, however a few months before the Statewide trial commenced, I was inputting the cultural information and completing CSPs in a similar way to the structure and averaged 8 endorsements a month. I also received positive feedback from two Magistrates and Lawyers throughout my time in CSPs and throughout the time of the Statewide Trial period.

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Although I am employed by VACCA, I am here to support Senior Advisors, Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations (ACCOs), Child Protection and Community Services Organisations across the state of Victoria; here are some ways I can best support you, your program and your organisation.  

  • I will support you in your work to develop Cultural Plans and can act as a troubleshooter for issues that arise in developing plans.
  • As I work closely with ACCO’s, Child Protection and Community Service Organisations, I can provide any feedback and work collaboratively with organisations to improve service delivery. 
  • I can help promote and create consistent practise in developing and implementing Cultural Plans across the state. 
  • I am able to address and support individual and organisational barriers that arise in completing Cultural Plans 
  • I will advocate and discuss any barriers or changes needed in the Cultural Planning space to the department and to the Aboriginal Children’s Forum 
  • I will work collaboratively with CEOs to improve the quality and compliance of Cultural Plans. 

If you would like to contact me to yarn further about ways I can best support you and/or your organisation, or are needing any support or would just like a yarn, please feel free to contact me on breannab@vacca.org, 0427 563 014 or at 48 Mary Street, Preston

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website may contain images, voices or names of deceased persons in photographs, film, audio recordings or printed material. To listen to our Acknowledgement of Country, click here.