Cultural Services

Acknowledgement and cultural awareness of the Welcome to Country tradition and associated cultural traditions, enables Gunaikurnai people to fulfil our responsibilities with respect to the land and to maintain and strengthen our culture.

Cultural Traditions & Protocols

Under our traditional laws and customs, the Gunaikurnai people have a responsibility to welcome visitors to Country – by fire, smoke, water ceremonies and with other specific cultural details including language, customs, protocols, relevant dreaming stories etc.

All requests to conduct a Welcome to Country within the Gunaikurnai RAP Area are to be made through the GLaWAC Cultural Hub.

In addition to conducting traditional ceremonies, GLaWAC offers cultural education sessions and cultural consultation services.

If you are interested in our cultural services please ensure that you read the FAQs below before you book, and feel free to contact the Cultural Hub on 5152 5100 to discuss the most appropriate ceremony for your event, subject to availability.

Traditional Ceremony

Welcome to Country


Welcome to Country is a way of recognising and paying respect to our people as well as acknowledging our ongoing connection to Country.

It is a ceremony performed by an Elder, or an appropriate person nominated as a GLaWAC representative*, as an oral welcome where visitors are greeted and traditionally offered safe passage through our land.

Each Welcome to Country is unique, reflecting cultural protocols and the experiences of the attending Elder, and should be afforded the appropriate respect.

*Please read below for more about how to respect ceremony

Smoking Ceremony


A Smoking Ceremony is an ancient custom that involves smouldering various native plants to produce smoke with cleansing properties to ward off any bad spirits.

When booking a Smoking Ceremony, it is customary to include a Welcome to Country. Please note that this will incur an additional fee.

A Smoking Ceremony is not always appropriate for an event. Requests may need to be discussed with the Cultural Hub before confirmation is given.

Cultural Education

Cultural Education Session

$500 per function

A Gunaikurnai representative will come and talk about Aboriginal history, culture and heritage. This session is for ½ an hour. Sessions can be arranged at another location however, travel costs would be incurred.

Cultural Awareness Session

<10 people
$200 per person

10-20 people
$2500 set fee

A Cultural Heritage presentation by a GLaWAC representative educating the knowledge and understanding of the Gunaikurnai culture. This session includes a presentation in-house at GLaWAC office and a field trip to a place of significant (on-Country).

Sessions can be arranged at another requested location however, travel costs would be incurred.

Cultural Consultation

Cultural Consultations

Price on application

It is considered respectful protocol to engage with Traditional Owners to seek permission for the use of their Indigenous Cultural Intellectual Property (ICIP).

This includes, but is not limited to, cultural knowledge, traditional language or artwork used in planned or existing projects including displays and interpretive signage, research or other initiatives that occur on their lands.

Many stakeholders are interested in engaging with Traditional Owners and the best way to achieve this is through a respectful consultation process.

The Cultural Hub facilitates a process for stakeholders to engage in meaningful dialogue with the Gunaikurnai about initiatives that occur on Gunaikurnai Country and the release of their Indigenous Cultural Intellectual Property.

Please note that cultural consultations may require more than one meeting and the consideration of Elders and community. We request your understanding that these matters may take several weeks, and occasionally beyond a month, to be determined.


Acknowledgement of the Gunaikurnai as Traditional Owners

An Acknowledgement of the Gunaikurnai people as Traditional Owners is required at the commencement of all major official events occurring on Gunaikurnai Country, and should be included at the beginning of all documents relating to Gunaikurnai Country.

An Acknowledgement is a deeply personal statement of respect and appreciation and should reflect the thoughts of the individual speaking. It should not speak on behalf of Traditional Owners.

As a base, the following words should be used when acknowledging the Gunaikurnai people as the Traditional Owners of Country:

“I would like to acknowledge the Gunaikurnai People as the Traditional Owners of the land on which we are gathered, and pay my respects to their Elders past and present, and future”.

Other examples include:
“I would like to acknowledge the Gunaikurnai People as the Traditional Owners of the land on which we live, work and play. I pay my respects to their Elders past and present, and future – for they hold the memories, traditions, culture, and hopes of their community.”

“I would like to acknowledge the Gunaikurnai People as the Traditional Owners of the land on which we are gathered and pay respect to Elders past, present, and future. I would like to recognise their continuing connection to the land, water, air and sky, acknowledging that sovereignty was never ceded.”

*In this region, GLaWAC represents people recognised as Traditional Owners under the Native Title Consent Determination from the Brabralung, Brataualung, Brayakaulung, Krauatungalung and Tatungalung clans.