After the release of the “Bringing them Home Report” (BTH) in 1997, the Department of Community Services (DOCS) acknowledged that in line with the Aboriginal Placement Principles and recommendations of the BTH Report, Aboriginal children and families should have access to Aboriginal services to meet their unique individual needs.
The Kempsey office of DOCS as part of the Mid North Coast Area, undertook a scoping exercise to seek the availability of a suitable Aboriginal Community Controlled Agency to deliver these services.
After many months the Aboriginal Women’s Agency, Goorie Galban’s was chosen.
An Aboriginal Steering Committee was formed, utilising the existing Board of Goorie Galban’s and Aboriginal DOCS staff. This Steering Committee established the scope of the agency and the auspicing agency as Goorie Galban’s.
The name Burrun Dalai was gifted to the service by the Dhungutti Elders and as we were advised means “Dream for Children”.
Goorie Galban’s was funded to auspice Burrun Dalai until its incorporation under Fair Trading on 13th February 2003, becoming known as Burrun Dalai Aboriginal Corporation Incorporated, with a working name of Burrun Dalai Out of Home Care and Family Support Service.
Burrun Dalai was originally housed in the Goorie Galbans premises at 5/6 Clyde Street Kempsey, after 18 months Burrun Dalai moved to 57 Elbow Street, West Kempsey. In 2008 Burrun Dalai moved to its current location in Kempsey, Level 1, 21-23 Clyde Street.
With changes to Policy and governments, Burrun Dalai has grown considerably. We were given the opportunity to move to the New England, Tamworth Offices in 2012, then to Armidale in the same year. In 2014 we opened an office in Taree.
Since then, we have continued to grow with the development of the HAPPI Clinic, NDIS, Intensive Family Based Services, Preservation Services, Youth Work and Community Work along with the more recent Future Planning Service and Cultural Teams.
Burrun Dalai continues to engage Aboriginal caseworker, Casework Managers, Executive Officers, and CEO. We do have some allied staff that are not Aboriginal, our EO Finance, CFO, Accountant, and some allied service providers. 97% of all staff are Aboriginal.
Burrun Dalai always maintains a child focused, trauma informed framework, acknowledging the hurt and grief from the past, the impact that has on our families and communities today, and always working towards keeping families together or bringing children home to family and country.