NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment

Developed a co-design process to ensure a culturally-led approach to managing the site of Bennelong's grave.

Bennelong was a warrior and peacemaker. He is known for taking the path of a diplomat and envoy for the Gadigal people to the invaders in the area now known as Sydney.

Bennelong's grave was an underwhelming and little-known place given his significance.

The NSW Government purchased the site believed to be the final resting place of Bennelong in 2018.

Communication Link worked with state, federal and local MPs alongside Indigenous Elders to determine the future of the site. As an important indigenous site, sensitivities and cultural practices needed to be observed and respected.

We developed a culturally-led co-design process in managing the site between Indigenous custodians and the NSW Government. It was structurally sensitive and flexible, allowing space and time to reflect and heal, cultivate relationships, deepen cultural understanding, determine roles, share ownership, and deliberate.

Engagement tools included guiding principles, measures to ensure clarity, the Yenna Ngalia (Walking Together) approach and methodology, a stakeholder scan, cultural authority and traditional ownership, and the collation of ideas and options.

We provided ongoing advisory as part of this important project over a number of years.

First Nations co-design
NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment
Project Type:
State Government
First Nations partnership
Stakeholder Engagement
Strategic Communication