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Empower through education

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Encounters Fellowships at the National Museum are made possible with the support of our donors.

This program is in its fifth year and has seen 12 First Nations future cultural leaders hone their skills in museology impacting thousands within communities across the country.

This selective program provides successful candidates with the opportunity to work alongside experts at the National Museum in Canberra, other Australian national institutions the British Museum in London as well as other institutions around the globe.

Fellows gain behind-the-scenes experience in areas including collections research and preservation, exhibition planning, digital storytelling, educational programming and project management.


Your donation will support the 2021 Encounters Fellowships intake to:

  • Travel to and work in Canberra, the UK, France and Canada gaining skills, knowledge, relationships and networks.
  • Enable each of the Fellows to create and deliver a community-based project.
  • Enable Museum staff to collaborate and work on Country with the Fellows and their communities.
  • Provide long-term mentoring support and engagement with the National Museum and its staff.

The impact of the previous Encounters Fellowships programs (2016 and 2019):

  • Successful delivery of community-based programs including: digital mapping initiatives, language revitalisation programs, digital repatriation programs and the production of travelling exhibitions.
  • Graduates of the 2019 program have been invited to undertake further study at leading international institutions, including The Prince’s Foundation School of Traditional Arts, London, England; Grassi Museum of Applied Arts, Leipzig, Germany; British Museum, London, England; University of Cambridge, England; and the National Museum of Australia, Canberra.
  • Creation of award-winning language-preservation programs revitalising First Nations dialects in North West Queensland.
  • Curation of nationally touring First Nations exhibitions.
  • Employment at leading cultural institutions and peak bodies including the National Gallery of Australia, National Museum of Australia, Arts Northern Rivers, Juluwarlu Group Aboriginal Corporation, Gab Titui Cultural Centre and James Cook Museum.

Thank you

We would like to thank and acknowledge our donors to the Encounters Fellowships Appeal, including those who would like to remain as anonymous:

Donors $50,000

The Kerridge Foundation


Donors $10,000–$49,999

Alex Hartman and Domitille Bernard
British High Commission
Daniel Gilbert AM
David Jones and Melinda Conrad
Keith Kerridge and the late Maureen Kerridge OAM
Kim William AM and Catherine Dovey
Kindred Spirits Foundation
Meredith Hinchliffe

Michael Traill AM and Jenny Gage Traill
Rossi Foundation
Sally White OAM and Geoffrey White OAM
Stephen Byron AM
Sarah Davies AM
Stephen Wedd
The International Foundation for Arts and Culture
The Dick and Pip Smith Foundation

Donors $1,000–$9,999

Dr Marion Amies
In memory of Michael James Ball AO
Helen Bauer and Helen Lynch AM
Jennifer Dobbin
Ross Gough

Fiona J James
Fiona Jose
Colin Macdonald
Ben and Marina Maguire
Ingrid Moses

Simon Murname
Andrew Phelan AM and Monica Phelan
Kylie Winkworth
Sue Wood

Donors $50–$999

Dr Michael Allam
Margaret Anderson
Robin and Mary-Ann Anderson
Barbara Austin
Sarah Balzer
Jeannine Bevan
Lynne Booth
Jan Brown AM
Dorothy Brownrigg
Dr Geoffrey Burkhardt
Mick Callinan
Carol Cartwright
Alex and Linda Church
Dr Catherine Clutton
Catherine Crompton and Tony Henshaw
Dimity Davy
Haydn Daw and Susan Daw OAM

Linda Freasier
Lee Fuller
Catherine Harris
Julie Hotzchin
Dr Anthea Hyslop
Dr Joseph Johnson OAM
Mike Johnston
Fiona Jose
Imogen Kelly
Catz Lemann
Nicholas and Ann Lidstone
Wendy Lindgren
Graeme Mayo
Robin McLachlan
Joan Merrell
Eveline Milne
Philip Moore

Anne Moten
Clive Rodger
Philip Roper
Dr Marian Simpson
Wendy Smith
Margaret Smythe
HL Stead
Warwick and Sandra Trimble
Linnett and David Turner
Dierk von Behrens
Maitland Wheeler
Doreen J Wilson
Jennifer Winch
Leonard Wise
Daniel Wong
Lady Laurel Yeend
Halina Zachara

Dr Mathew Trinca, Director, National Museum of Australia:

Education and the sharing of knowledge are central to the Museum’s ambitions. An ambition realised through our inaugural Encounters Fellowships Program. This was an inspirational process of two-way learning – the Museum has gained as much from the program as the participants.

The National Museum of Australia gratefully acknowledges the Australian Government’s support of the Encounters Fellowships Program.

The Museum would like to thank The Prince’s Trust Australia which, as key partner of the inaugural 2016 fellowships, generously supported the program and its recipients. This program is only possible with the ongoing support of the Museum’s private donors and sponsors.

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