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MEDIA RELEASE: Philanthropy responds to Uluru Statement

July 11th, 2019

Australia’s philanthropic community has joined together to sign a collective response to the Uluru Statement From the Heart.

Released in May 2017, the Uluru Statement From the Heart is a national Indigenous consensus position on Indigenous constitutional reform, which was drafted at the end of a three-day constitutional convention of 250 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander delegates. The Statement was the culmination of 13 Regional Dialogues held around the country during a year-long consultation.

The Statement From the Heart is a message to all Australians, calling for the establishment of a ‘First Nations Voice’ in the Australian Constitution and a ‘Makarrata Commission’ to supervise a process of ‘agreement-making’ and ‘truth-telling’ between governments and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

To view the Uluru Statement of the Heart, click here.

In an ‘open letter from philanthropy’ published in the Australian Financial Review on Friday 12 July 2019, 62 individual philanthropists and philanthropic foundations have supported the call for the establishment of a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution and for a Makarrata Commission.

Philanthropy Australia Chief Executive Officer, Sarah Davies, said the open letter was driven by the sector’s desire to help make a difference for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

“Philanthropy has a responsibility to take a stand on social issues where it can to make a difference and many of our members felt this was an ideal opportunity to respond collectively. That’s because at its very core, philanthropy is about working with communities to achieve positive social, environmental and cultural change,” Ms Davies said.

Download a copy of philanthropy's response to the Uluru Statement here.

Open letter from philanthropy to the First Nations of Australia

We support the Uluru Statement from the Heart

Thank you for your Uluru Statement from the Heart, an invitation to Australia and the Australian people.

We make this response as members of the philanthropic community in Australia, committed to a reconciled Australia and one that is respectful of the spirit of self-determination.

We share your vision for Australia’s First Nations to take their rightful place in Australia and fully embrace your vision for your children to walk in two worlds. We thank you for and embrace this gift of your culture, which will give us all a fuller expression of Australia’s nationhood.

We recognise the Uluru Statement as a historic mandate for change and understand that all Australians have a great responsibility to walk alongside our first Australians in the call for constitutional reform and in the need for truth-telling about the history and impact of colonisation.

We hear and support your call for the establishment of a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution and for a referendum to achieve this as a national priority.

We hear and support your call for a Makarrata Commission to supervise a process of agreement-making between governments and First Nations, and truth-telling about our history.

We commit to working with you and standing by you and all Australia to achieve the aims of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

SIGNED BY (last updated 11/10/2020)

  1. Alison Otieno
  2. Anna Beaumont
  3. Annamila Foundation
  4. Arnie Bax
  5. Australian Communities Foundation
  6. Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network
  7. Australian Executor Trustees Ltd
  8. Australian Social Investment Trust
  9. Australian Women Donors Network
  10. Barbara Charan
  11. Besen Family Foundation
  12. Black Dog Institute
  13. Broadley Trust
  14. Cathy Scalzo
  15. Craig Winkler
  16. Diane Balnaves
  17. Dominique Jones
  18. Dr Pete Gill, Blue Whale Study Inc.
  19. Dusseldorp Forum
  20. English Family Foundation
  21. Equity Trustees
  22. Euan Murdoch
  23. Fay Fuller Foundation
  24. Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal
  25. Fouress Foundation
  26. Fremantle Foundation
  27. Genevieve Fitzgerald
  28. Genevieve Timmons
  29. Gillian Hund
  30. Give Where You Live Foundation
  31. Helen Macpherson Smith Trust
  32. Impact Generation Partners
  33. James N Kirby Foundation
  34. Julie Rosenberg
  35. Julie Sanders
  36. Kilfinan AUSTRALIA
  37. Koda Capital
  38. Kristin Stegley OAM
  39. Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation
  40. Maple-Brown Family Foundation
  41. Matana Foundation for Young People
  42. Melbourne Welsh Church Foundation
  43. Michal Fagan, Trusts and Foundations Manager Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation
  44. Ninti One Limited
  45. Paul Metcalfe, Cape York Partnership
  46. Paul Salteri AM, Chairman of CAGES Foundation
  47. Perpetual
  48. Reichstein Foundation
  49. Ross Coller
  50. Ruffin Falkiner Foundation
  51. Sharon Landy
  52. Simone Clancy
  53. Sue Westwood
  54. ten20 Foundation
  55. Tessa English
  56. The Aesop Foundation
  57. The Balnaves Foundation
  58. The Caledonia Foundation
  59. The Funding Network
  60. The Kimberley Foundation
  61. The Myer Foundation
  62. The R E Ross Trust
  63. The Skrzynski Family Sky Foundation
  64. The Smith Family
  65. The Snow Foundation
  66. The Tony Foundation
  67. The Wyatt Trust
  68. Thea Kleiber
  69. Trawalla Foundation
  70. Wendy & Rod Brooks
  71. Wheelton Philanthropy
  72. Wilson Foundation
  73. Woor-Dungin
  74. Yarraville Community Centre


As the peak body for giving, Philanthropy Australia uses the collective voice of the hundreds of funders, social investors, for-purpose organisations and change agents that comprise its membership community to advocate for policy and regulatory environments that enable more philanthropy with impact in Australia.

Media contact:
Megan Hannan
Marketing Manager
Philanthropy Australia
M: 0438 859 825
T: 03 9665 9112

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