Searching for records about you or your family can be confronting and time consuming. It is important that you go at your own pace and seek assistance where possible. There are a number of support services and agencies that can provide further information, as well as support and assistance to you on your journey.
Stolen Generations support services
It is recommended that Stolen Generations survivors access records through a culturally appropriate support service. These agencies and organisations are experienced in and sensitive to the search needs of the Stolen Generations. In addition, they have strong connections with the agencies holding information, as well as expertise in locating records and helping you to access them. The workers in these agencies and organisations can help you think the issues through, work out what it is you are looking for, provide emotional and practical help and give you specific advice as to how to proceed. And if they can't help you, they will most likely know who can.
Link-Up provides a service to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people over the age of 18, who have been adopted, placed in foster care, institutionalised or forcibly removed, to trace and be reunited with their families. Link-Up works with clients in culturally appropriate ways, giving guidance and support to both the client and their family.
Click here for Link-Up organisations in States other than Victoria.
Connecting Home Ltd is a state-wide organisation committed to providing a broad range of services to members of the Stolen Generations. Connecting Home can provide support to access public records, seeking confirmation of Aboriginality, access to counselling, support to organise reunions and support to find out about your family and community. Referral pathways to other practical services that can assist are also part of the program.
The Koorie Heritage Trust Inc, through its Koorie Family History Service (KFHS), provides confidential client-based genealogy research to members of the Stolen Generations and the Victorian Koorie Community, aged over 18. If you meet their criteria and complete the application process, the KFHS researchers can give you historical nad cultural information regarding your Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander family in Victoria, trace your family tree and help you to access your personal records. The KFHS will assist you with search advice and referrals if they are unable to take you on as a client.
Many of Victoria's Aboriginal community controlled organisations employ Bringing Them Home (BTH) workers, who can provide counselling and support to members of the Stolen Generations who are involved in family tracing or trying to find out more about their own personal history.
The Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) Family History Unit maintains a list of organisations that provide social and emotional wellbeing services for individuals and families.
Forgotten Australians support services
CLAN offers support to individuals who have been a a State Ward, Home child or foster child in Australia, or whose parents or other family members have had this experience.
Open Place is a support and advocacy service that co-ordinates and provides direct assistance for people who grew up in Victorian orphanages, children's homes, institutions and foster homes. Open Place can assist you to access your personal records and trace your history. Face-to-face support and/or counselling can also be arranged throughout the search journey.
VANISH helps people with their search for relatives that they have been separated from by adoption and state wardship, and also provides support and guidance throughout the search and contact process.