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Annual Report 2017-2018

695 0 01 Dec 2018

YYN Joint Management Plan Implementation Coordinator

76 0 08 Sep 2020

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation is currently seeking a Joint Management Plan Implementation Coordinator for our Barmah Office.

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) was established in 1998 to represent the descendants of the original Yorta Yorta peoples in making decisions and acting on any matters of significance to the Yorta Yorta peoples and to enter into agreements with any person, government agency or authority in relation to the protection of the Yorta Yorta Country. The Yorta Yorta traditional lands covers a unique stretch of forest-wetlands located in what is now known as the central Murray- Goulburn region in North-Central Victoria and Southern News South Wales approximately 20,000 square kilometres. The YYNAC has maintained its status as a Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) under the Cultural Heritage Act since 2007.

YYNAC is a not-for-profit organisation working towards a better future for its people through numerous projects and partnerships with local, state, national and international organisations and governments. For more information please visit: www.yynac.com.au.

This project aims to support recognition and self-determination of the Yorta Yorta people by sharing maintaining the culture experience for both Yorta Yorta/Aboriginal Peoples and sharing this with the general community and visitors experience Barmah Lakes and the Dharnya Interpretation Centre.

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation are promoting a business case for leasing and future management of the Dharnya Centre (within the Barmah National Park) which will include visitors experience through educational programs and events that can promote Yorta Yorta history and culture, this Masterplan provides  the opportunity to promote this beyond the Dharnya Centre precinct.

About this role

This position will play a lead role in liaison and implementation of the objectives of the Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) in the delivery of the Joint Management Plan for the Barmah National Park (BNP) and in engagement and partnership with Parks Victoria and the Department of Environment, Land, Water & Planning (DELWP) to;

  • Create an interface for YYNAC on the coordination of the Operation Plan with the Yorta Yorta Traditional Owners Board (YYTOLMB) and Parks Victoria for the Joint Management Plan of the Barmah National Park.
  • To promote a process of liaison between YYNAC, Parks Victoria and the YYTOLMB with the implementation of the management plans at an operations level.
  • To support Yorta Yorta People in the recruitment, training and direct support for the YY Rangers and Team Leaders in their transition into Parks Victoria.
  • Provide a program with Parks Victoria of Yorta Yorta Cultural Insight training with all Parks Victoria staff that work within the Yorta Yorta Traditional country.
  • To provide coordination the BNP Implementation Plans for Yorta Yorta Nation and Parks Victoria, which aligns with the YYNAC Agreements with Victorian Government and its statutory obligations. In particular the Co-Management Agreement 2004 and YYNAC Recognised Aboriginal Party under the Victorian Cultural Heritage Act and other programs or projects that come from the YYNAC Whole of Country Plan and Strategic Plan that have a direct effect on the focus area.

This role will be responsible in coordinating a working relationship with Parks Victoria the implementation of the Joint Management Implementation Plan, which will result in planning activities on the ground level representing YYNAC in their partnership with Parks Victoria and other stakeholders.

The role will be required to liaise with the Executive Officer of Yorta Yorta Traditional Owner Management Board and Yorta Yorta Senior Managers of Whole of Country Unit & Woka Walla NRM Team and Cultural Heritage Unit.

If you are proud of your Yorta Yorta heritage, have more than two years’ experience in a similar role and want to use your talents to support the development of our people and the preservation of our living culture, whilst being part of a supportive team – please contact us today.

The role is a full time (37.5 hrs. per week) on an initial fixed-term 24mth contract. Salary to be negotiated according to experience (APS Level 5 equivalent) Access to a company vehicle included.

To obtain a full position description please contact Laura via email only finance@yynac.com.au, queries will not be responded to via social media or over the phone.

After viewing the PD you can submit your resume and cover letter by email to finance@yynac.com.au

Applications close 28/09/2020

This is an “Indigenous Only” role under Special Measures of the EEO Act 2010, Section 12.

The application form will include these questions:

  • Which of the following statements best describes your right to work in Australia?
  • Which of the following Microsoft Office products are you experienced with?
  • Do you have a current Australian driver’s licence?

1 Sept 2020

Location Shepparton & Goulburn Valley

Work Type Contract/Temp

Classification Consulting & Strategy

Environment & Sustainability Consulting

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

114 0 08 Sep 2020

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation is currently seeking a Business Development Manager for our Barmah Office.

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) was established in 1998 to represent the descendants of the original Yorta Yorta peoples in making decisions and acting on any matters of significance to the Yorta Yorta peoples and to enter into agreements with any person, government agency or authority in relation to the protection of the Yorta Yorta Country. The Yorta Yorta traditional lands covers a unique stretch of forest-wetlands located in what is now known as the central Murray- Goulburn region in North-Central Victoria and Southern News South Wales approximately 20,000 square kilometres. The YYNAC has maintained its status as a Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) under the Cultural Heritage Act since 2007.

YYNAC is a not-for-profit organisation working towards a better future for its people through numerous projects and partnerships with local, state, national and international organisations and governments. For more information please visit: www.yynac.com.au.

About this role

YYNAC will use resources obtained from a grant from Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR) to build on the YYNAC Strategic Plan 2020-30, enabling the employement of a Business Development Manager to build on the existing 3 key YYNAC business initiatives: Dharnya Centre Complex, Woka Walla NRM Program and the Ulunja Farm to facilitate employment, training and business opportunities for our people and to develop a process for 16 Family groups of the YYNAC in securing their long term cultural, social and economic well-being.

Key Outcomes

  • Formulating and integrating the development of business plans with set objectives, budgets and goals and continuing risk and business performance for the Strategic Business Unit (SBU): Dharnya Centre Complex, Woka Walla NRM Program and Ulunja Farm.  To identify opportunities for further training and development of business plans for each of the 16 Family groups linked to these business initiatives within tourism and hospitality and other related ventures
  • Further developing a portfolio of SBU’s for YYNAC by identifying opportunities for the provision of new business either through government funded programs and services, commercial fee-for- service opportunities, or strategic partnerships for the corporation as aligned with the Strategic Plans, associated Business Plans and the YYNAC Board.
  • Improved sustainability for the long-term wellbeing of Yorta Yorta Nation and its Peoples through the delivery of economic development initiatives.
  • Ensuring ongoing collaboration and alignment of activities between policy, programs, marketing, and fundraising to maximise opportunities for business program development.
  • Providing written reports to the Funding bodies, providing for risk and financial stability within term strategy for the sustainability of these 3 key YYNAC Businesses.

If you have more than two years’ experience in a similar role and have relevant tertiary qualifications in Business Management or a related discipline, and want to use your talents to support the development of our people and the preservation of our living culture, whilst being part of a supportive team – please contact us today.

The role is a full time (37.5 hrs. per week) on an initial fixed-term 24mth contract. Salary to be negotiated according to experience (APS Level 5 equivalent) work vehicle available for use. To obtain a full position description please contact Laura via email only finance@yynac.com.au, queries will not be responded to via social media or over the phone. After viewing the PD you can submit your resume and cover letter by email to finance@yynac.com.au

Applications close 28/09/2020The application form will include these questions:

  • Which of the following statements best describes your right to work in Australia?
  • Do you have a current Australian driver’s licence?
  • Which of the following Microsoft Office products are you experienced with?

1 Sept 2020

Location Shepparton & Goulburn Valley

Work Type Contract/Temp

Classification Consulting & Strategy

Corporate Development

Job Vacancy: Executive Support Officer

99 0 03 Sep 2020

YORTA YORTA NATION ABORIGINAL CORPORATION

EXECUTIVE SUPPORT OFFICER – BARMAH

CONTRACT TYPE: 24 Months Part Time Initially

HOURS:  Part time (22.5 hours per week) flexible days

We will offer an attractive remuneration package, to be negotiated relevant to the skills and experience of the successful applicant, including:

•   Access to a vehicle whilst at work, superannuation and salary sacrifice options to increase your take-home pay

•   The support of a professional and competent team of administrative and managerial staff

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) was established in 1998 to represent the descendants of the original Yorta Yorta peoples in making decisions and acting on any matters of significance to the Yorta Yorta peoples and to enter into agreements with any person, government agency or authority in relation to the protection of the Yorta Yorta Country. The Yorta Yorta traditional lands covers a unique stretch of forest-wetlands located in what is now known as the central Murray- Goulburn region in North-Central Victoria and Southern News South Wales approximately 20,000 square kilometres. The YYNAC has maintained its status as a Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) under the Cultural Heritage Act since 2007.

YYNAC is a not-for-profit organisation working towards a better future for its people through numerous projects and partnerships with local, state, national and international organisations and governments. For more information please visit: www.yynac.com.au.

About the Role

The Executive Support Officer role will work closely with the CEO to provide high-level secretarial and administrative support support for Corporate Officers and Management that ensure quality of service and professional relationships with stakeholders.

If you are proud of your Yorta Yorta heritage, have more than two years’ experience in a similar role and want to use your talents to support the development of our people and the preservation of our living culture, whilst being part of a supportive team – please contact us today.

The role is a full time (22.5 hrs. per week) on an initial Part Time 24mth contract. Competitive wages will apply according to experience.

To obtain a position description please contact Laura at finance@yynac.com.au via email only, queries will not be responded to via social media or over the phone.

After viewing the PD you can submit your resume and cover letter by email if you wish to finance@yynac.com.au

Applications close 21/09/2020

This is an “Indigenous Only” role under Special Measures of the EEO Act 2010, Section 12.

The application form will include these questions:

  • Which of the following statements best describes your right to work in Australia?
  • Which of the following Microsoft Office products are you experienced with?
  • Do you have experience in an administration role?
  • Do you have a current Australian driver’s licence?
  • How many years’ experience do you have as an office administrator?

Vacancy: Receptionist/Management Support Officer

222 0 30 Jul 2020

YORTA YORTA NATION ABORIGINAL CORPORATION

RECEPTIONIST – MANAGEMENT SUPPORT OFFICER – BARMAH

CONTRACT TYPE: 12 Month Fixed Term initially

HOURS:  Full time (37.5 hours per week)

We will offer an attractive remuneration package, to be negotiated relevant to the skills and experience of the successful applicant, including:

•   Access to a vehicle whilst at work, superannuation and salary sacrifice options to increase your take-home pay

•   The support of a professional and competent team of administrative and managerial staff

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) was established in 1998 to represent the descendants of the original Yorta Yorta peoples in making decisions and acting on any matters of significance to the Yorta Yorta peoples and to enter into agreements with any person, government agency or authority in relation to the protection of the Yorta Yorta Country. The Yorta Yorta traditional lands covers a unique stretch of forest-wetlands located in what is now known as the central Murray- Goulburn region in North-Central Victoria and Southern News South Wales approximately 20,000 square kilometres. The YYNAC has maintained its status as a Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) under the Cultural Heritage Act since 2007.

YYNAC is a not-for-profit organisation working towards a better future for its people through numerous projects and partnerships with local, state, national and international organisations and governments. For more information please visit: www.yynac.com.au.

About the Role

The Receptionist/Management Support Officer role will include being a face for the organisation in Barmah from August 2020. Your role is responsible for maintaining a professional reception to the Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation and for providing high-level secretarial and administrative support support for Corporate Officers and Management that ensure quality of service and professional relationships with stakeholders.

If you are proud of your Yorta Yorta heritage, have more than two years’ experience in a similar role and want to use your talents to support the development of our people and the preservation of our living culture, whilst being part of a supportive team – please contact us today.

The role is a full time (37.5 hrs. per week) on an initial fixed-term 12mth contract. Award wages will apply according to experience.

To obtain a position description please contact Laura at finance@yynac.com.au via email only, queries will not be responded to via social media or over the phone.

After viewing the PD you can submit your resume and cover letter by email if you wish to finance@yynac.com.au

Applications close 21/08/2020

This is an “Indigenous Only” role under Special Measures of the EEO Act 2010, Section 12.

The application form will include these questions:

  • Which of the following statements best describes your right to work in Australia?
  • Do you have experience in an administration role?
  • Which of the following Microsoft Office products are you experienced with?
  • Do you have a current Australian driver’s licence?
  • How many years’ experience do you have as an office administrator?

A MESSAGE FROM OUR CEO REGARDING THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK

625 0 25 Mar 2020

Dear Yorta Yorta Members, Elders, community and Stakeholders.

On behalf of the YYNAC Board l would like to update you on Yorta Yorta Nations response to Coronavirus (COVID-19).

The COVID-19 Pandemic Plan for the Victorian Health Sector stage of response has moved from Stage 1 – Initial Containment to Stage 2 – Targeted Action.

Our Senior Managers met on Monday 23rd March to take actions and prepare messaging to staff, members, customers and stakeholders.

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) will continue to operate and is financially viable with all existing staff at present retaining their positions. This situation will be updated at end of each financial quarter or as required should circumstances change.

As part of our response to the COVID-19 outbreak, we are implementing additional precautions to ensure we as continue to deliver our Cultural Heritage and Environmental / Natural Resource Management (NRM) Services while also looking after the safety and wellbeing of our staff and especially our Elders.

In line with actions being taken by other Traditional Owner Organisation Boards our reception area will be closed to the general public from Tuesday 23 March 2020 until further notice.

We will continue to service our Elders, members, community, stakeholders and customers by telephone, email, Facebook and our website.

Our Customer Support Team are still able to assist customers by:

  • Phone: (03) 5832 0222 (all enquiries from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday)
  • Email: reception@yynac.com.au
  • Website: www.yynac.com.au

We have staff working from 3 of our YYNAC office sites with social distancing or working from home as options of choice.The Woka Walla and Cultural Heritage Units will continue working externally from their deport on key works programmes in Yorta Yorta country.

Cultural Heritage Management Plans will proceed as normal, as assessed on a day by day in keeping with directives of the Victorian and National CODVID-19 updates.Our staff are focussing on the continued delivery of our Cultural Heritage and Environmental/NRM services and will respond to your enquiry as quickly as possible.

NOTE: All Welcome to Country bookings and YY Cultural Insight Training sessions or Events either booked or in the future will cease until further notice as of Tuesday 24th March 2020.

Please continue to submit invoices and contract progress claims, to your payments contact or to Laura Stevens – YYNAC Corporate Services Manager by email on finance@yynac.com.au

YYNAC staff are committed to continuing our work as set out by our Members, 16 family groups, Council of Elders and Board.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me on ceo@yynac.com.au or through reception email reception@yynac.com.au 

Regards,

Monica Morgan CEO
Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation

Monica Morgan, CEO YYNAC

EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST

563 0 25 Mar 2020

EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST (EOI) ARE SOUGHT FROM YORTA YORTA MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC.

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation are seeking expressions of interest to fill positions on the Yorta Yorta Traditional Owner Land Management Board.

All YYTOLMB members are fully approved and endorsed by the Yorta Yorta Nation so that the endorsed applicants list can go to the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change for appointment.

About the Yorta Yorta Traditional Owner Land Management Board (YYTOLMB)

The YYTOLMB was established in June 2013 under the Conservation Forests and Lands Act 1987 by a determination of the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change. The board was established to give effect to the Yorta Yorta Traditional Owner Land Management Agreement dated 29 October 2010.

The board’s key function is to enable the knowledge and culture of the Yorta Yorta People to be recognised and incorporated into the management of Barmah National Park.

Board membership comprises a majority of Yorta Yorta People and a nominee of the Secretary of the Department of Environment, Water, Land & Planning and brings strategic skills, knowledge, experience, and connections to organisations, stakeholders and community. This aims to bring breadth and strength to the Joint Management of the Barmah National Park.

The Board consists of seven members and we are particularly interested in people who have the time to actively be involved in the activities of the YYTOLMB.

Successful candidates will bring to the role, proven business, budget preparation, governance and administration skills as well as excellent communication (written and oral), extensive network, community development and or commercial experience and relationship building skills as well as a demonstrated commitment to collaborative work practices and competence in analysing the critical issues of YYTOLMB.

Appointment will be up to a two-year term with and we strongly encourage women to apply for these positions. These are statutory body appointed positions by the Minister and so Directors are bound by good governance procedures as defined by the VPSA.

YYOTLMB positions are volunteer positions however you would be attractively remunerated for your time and travel expenses. Regular monthly meetings are scheduled as well sub- committee duties. There will be occasional workshops to be held within Barmah National Park.

These positions would suit someone who:
 Is a member of the Yorta Yorta Community with good knowledge of Yorta Yorta Culture and our Woka and Walla.
 Possesses Knowledge of Yorta Yorta history especially of the Barmah National Park, Barmah Lakes and our Dhungala.
 Demonstrated experience on high level Project Boards, especially around governance, strategic planning, finance and reporting.

It is strongly encouraged that Yorta Yorta People who have knowledge and experience in key areas needed on the YYTOLMB and commitment to attend monthly meetings.
 Knowledge of Park Management Planning and Implementation
 Financial management
 Sound Governance and Business
 Strong Cultural Knowledge of the Barmah National Park.

If you think you possess these qualities and skills the YYTOLMB encourages you to join the Board. Applications can be sent Attention: Monica Morgan, Chief Executive Officer, YYNAC, PO Box 1363, Shepparton, VIC, 3632. or email reception@yynac.com.au by the closing date of COB Friday, 20th March 2020.

Job Vacancy

625 0 10 Mar 2020

Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation

Seeking Expressions of Interest for a YYNAC Engagement & Coordination Manager Located at our Barmah Office.

Position is Full Time & at APS Level 6

12 months contract.

The Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC) are seeking a person will work under the Chief Executive Officer to provide a point of contact for the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Policy (DELWP) and key senior staff and will facilitate an effective and efficient engagement between the YYNAC and the Victorian Government:

i. To assist the YYNAC CEO in high-level planning and co-ordination between the Department and YYNAC.

ii. Manage the YYNAC staff working in On Country and Water programs as funded through DELWP. 

iii. Promote YYNAC process of Self Determination with DELWP and its agencies as agreed.

iv. Oversight the development and/or implementation of key strategies and projects for the YYNAC. 

v. To assist DELWP in meeting its obligations under any YYNAC Funding Agreement and any other arrangements with the YYNAC.

This role will require knowledge and experience in representing First Nation Organisations at a senior government level, we view as important the person having an understanding of Yorta Yorta Nation and our decision making processes and also ideally have working experience of government policy and decision-making processes.

YYNAC is a not-for-profit organisation led by Yorta Yorta People, facilitating numerous projects and partnerships with local, state, national and international organisations and governments. For more information please visit: www.yynac.com.au.

This is an equal opportunity position, in which we strongly encourage a Yorta Yorta Person/s to apply, you must have experience in a similar role and be willing to work for the Yorta Yorta Nation and our People within a supportive work environment.

Salary is negotiated according to experience and qualifications on an initial fixed term for a 12 months contract. To express your interest please email finance@yynac.com.au, queries will not be responded to via social media or over the phone.

Expressions of Interest are sought urgently

YYNAC Annual Report 2018/2019

581 0 21 Feb 2020
YYNAC 2018 / 2019 Annual Report

YYNAC Annual Report 2018 / 2019 has been uploaded to the Documents section of the Forum.

Please click the link below to read the Annual Report.

https://yynac.com.au/yynac-2018-2019-annual-report

Greater Shepparton: Aboriginal Street Art Project

720 0 05 Feb 2020

In 2016, Greater Shepparton City Council came up with an idea to celebrate the local Aboriginal people and their culture through street art. Street art has become quite prevalent in Northern Victoria and if Greater Shepparton was to commence a street art project, it would be pertinent that the project links back to Greater Shepparton in some way.

SOURCE: http://greatershepparton.com.au/council/major-projects/aboriginal-street-art-project

The Aboriginal history and culture is rich within the Greater Shepparton region and what a perfect theme for a street art project!

Council, in discussion with the local Aboriginal community, noticed an interest amongst the locals in recognising significant figures who are not currently recognised within the region. Instead of the community putting their own hands up to potentially be featured within artwork, they felt it was much more pertinent to recognise their ancestors and significant elders that they look up to. The two names that popped up the most were Uncle William Cooper and Pastor Sir Douglas Nicholls.

Consultation began with Rumbalara Cooperative, Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation, the local Aboriginal community and the families of both Uncle William Cooper and Sir Douglas Nicholls.

Both individuals were approved to be featured within a mural through both the Yorta Yorta Aboriginal Corporation Elders Committee and the Rumbalara Cooperative Elders Committee.

Research commenced regarding most suitable artists who have a proven record in painting large sized portraits of people. Given this project is going to feature portraits, it is incredibly important that the likeness is matched to a tee!

Goulburn Valley Water offered Council their wall on Fryers Street to showcase the first mural and have also offered Council the opportunity to showcase the second mural on the adjacent wall.

Council has committed to recognising two Aboriginal females that will be selected by the local community and both females will be announced later in the year.

(L-R) Merle Miller (Rumbalara Co-op, Elders Committee Member), Adnate (Project artist) Robert Nicholls (Nephew of Sir Douglas Nicholls), Aunty Pam Pedersen (Eldest Daughter of Sir Douglas Nicholls), Cr Kim O'Keeffe (Deputy Mayor, Greater Shepparton City Council) at today's Aboriginal wall art project in Shepparton.
(L-R) Merle Miller (Rumbalara Co-op, Elders Committee Member), Adnate (Project artist) Robert Nicholls (Nephew of Sir Douglas Nicholls), Aunty Pam Pedersen (Eldest Daughter of Sir Douglas Nicholls), Cr Kim O’Keeffe (Deputy Mayor, Greater Shepparton City Council) at today’s Aboriginal wall art project in Shepparton.

Aunty Elizabeth Morgan-Hoffman

536 0 05 Feb 2020

Elizabeth Maud Morgan-Hoffmann

A determined achiever who prioritised the welfare of women and children.

SOURCE: https://www.aboriginalvictoria.vic.gov.au/elizabeth-maud-morgan-hoffmann

Inducted: 2017

Yorta Yorta Elder, Elizabeth Morgan, dedicated herself to improving the lives of her people. Known as Aunty Liz or Yarmauk to her grandchildren, Elizabeth was born in 1927 at Cummeragunja Aboriginal Station, along the Murray River in New South Wales. She was the second child of Michael Stafford Morgan and Maud Miriam Morgan (nee Ross). As a young girl, she loved camping in summer next to the Moira Lakes with Granny Lizzy Atkinson and siblings Rebecca, Merle, Michael, Dennis, Desmond and Lester.

When Elizabeth was just 11 years old her mother sadly passed away, not long after she was removed from her family home. Elizabeth was sent to live at the station hospital, where she worked as a domestic, bound by the threat that if she did not comply she would be sent to the Cootamundra Girls’ Home. In 1939 Elizabeth witnessed the ‘Cummeragunja walk off’, a significant and historic protest by her people against cruel and restrictive practices at the mission. The experiences of her early life had a far-reaching effect, shaping her passion and determination to fight for Aboriginal peoples’ rights.

At age 14, Elizabeth was still living under the restrictive conditions of the Aboriginal Protection Act which required her to leave the reserve and work as a domestic. She went to work with her Aunty Bertha Firebrace (nee Morgan) at a Station near Moulamein and from there joined her sister Merle in Swan Hill. The sisters moved to Melbourne with their cousin Melva Johnson (nee Day) where they found work while living at the Salvation Army hostel in Spring Street. It was at this time, in the mid 1940s and early 1950s, they were inspired and influenced by Aboriginal leaders such as Uncle William Cooper, Aunty Marg Tucker, Uncle Doug and Aunty Gladys Nicholls.

In 1954 Elizabeth held her first child, Ross Morgan. As a single mother it was difficult but she had the help and support of her sister Merle and her extended family. In 1956 Elizabeth met her partner and they had three children Monica, Bernard and Denis. They then moved to Moama in New

South Wales to be close to Elizabeth’s family and country. Unfortunately the marriage was not a happy one and, after living under the shadow of domestic violence for many years, Elizabeth took her children back to Melbourne to start a new life.

Working for better conditions for Aboriginal people

In 1971 Elizabeth started work with the Aborigines Advancement League (AAL), taking the role of Matron of the Lady Gladys Nicholls Hostel. It was during this time she became involved in the Aboriginal cause joining the National Council of Aboriginal and Islander Women and supporting the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in the fight for land rights and better conditions for Aboriginal people in Australia. In 1972 Elizabeth co-founded the Yorta Yorta Tribal Council with others, such as Margaret Wirrpanda (nee Briggs), placing a claim over their traditional lands.

In 1972 Elizabeth supported her sister Merle in her work to establish the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service in Fitzroy and became the inaugural chairperson. In the same year the sisters worked with other Aboriginal people to establish the Aboriginal Health Service.

By 1973 Elizabeth was elected chairperson of the AAL, then from 1975 to 1983, was its salaried director. While at the AAL, Elizabeth and Stewart Murray co-founded the Victorian Aboriginal Land Council. In the early 1980s Elizabeth oversaw the AAL building appeal which resulted in relocation from Westgarth to their new premises in Thornbury.

Co-founding the Aboriginal Housing Cooperative

In other initiatives, Elizabeth and Eric (Joe) McGuinness co-founded the Aboriginal Housing Cooperative in 1974, with Elizabeth as chairperson and Eric a director. In later years she was a member of the Steering Committee of the Victorian Aboriginal Housing Board. In 1975 after establishing the first Aboriginal women’s refuge in Australia, Elizabeth travelled with her sister Merle and Joyce Johnson, to Canberra to lobby for funding for their refuge. In 1982 Elizabeth Hoffmann House (named in her honour) became incorporated. Today it has new premises with wrap around support programs and is known as Elizabeth Morgan House Aboriginal Women’s Services Cooperative Ltd.

Improving the welfare of Aboriginal women and children

Elizabeth continued her work to improve the welfare of Aboriginal women and children. In 1977, in support of founder Molly Dyer, she became the inaugural chairperson of the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency (VACCA). She also worked with the National Council of Aboriginal and Islander Women and the Women’s Council at Echuca and from the late 1970s until 1985 was a commissioner with the Aboriginal Development Commission.

Elizabeth did not restrict herself to administrative roles: from 1972 to 1975 she was both an actor and board member of the Nindethana Theatre Company, working alongside Joyce Johnson, Eleanor Harding, Harry Williams and Jack Charles. Elizabeth appeared in plays such as The Cherry Pickers and Brumby Innes.

In 1983 Elizabeth returned to her beloved Cummeragunja and became a founding member of the Cummeragunja Housing and Development Corporation and, in 1984, the Yorta Yorta Local Aboriginal Land Council. Elizabeth was the first elected representative to the NSW State Land Council (from 1984-86). She helped established the Yorta Yorta Murray Goulburn Rivers Clans Group (1993-98) becoming the inaugural chairperson and, in 1998, became an Elder of the Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation.

While the Yorta Yorta Native Title claim was unsuccessful, Elizabeth was a proud signatory to the historic Co-Management Agreement between the Victorian State Government and the Yorta Yorta Nation in May 2004.

Today the Yorta Yorta people are continuing negotiations for self-determination and justice over their traditional lands, water and culture. Elizabeth was one of the 250 women included in the Victorian Women’s Honour Roll in 2001 and in 2006 received the inaugural NAIDOC Lifetime Achievement Award. Yarmauk has left a powerful legacy for her children, grandchildren and great grand-children, and her proud extended family. In 2009 she passed into the dreamtime at home at Cummeragunja with her beloved sister Merle by her side.