AIDR Recovery Matters Webinar Series

Indigenous perspectives of disaster recovery


2.00-3.30pm AEST, 26 July 2021



Recovery Matters webinars get to the heart of key issues that are important in disaster recovery. Join the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience as we invite expert speakers to share what they know and help us move forward with effective recovery.

Indigenous perspectives of disaster recovery 

Indigenous people are disproportionately impacted by disasters in Australia. However, little research or practice guidance exists about the impacts of disasters for Indigenous Australians and how the recovery system can better support recovery for First Nations communities.

This webinar will give research, policy and practice insights.


Guest speakers:

Samuel Savage, Community Partnerships and Development Officer
Australian Red Cross  

Sam will discuss the recovery effort following the 2019 Townsville monsoon and flooding event, and the work undertaken in recovery and preparedness with Indigenous communities in Northern Queensland.  

Sam is a Traditional Owner of the Bindal Nation in Townsville. His ancestry is both Aboriginal (Birrigubba Nation) and Torres Strait Islander (Mauar Island).

He has worked for Red Cross since 2014 and is currently working to re-engage young people involved with the juvenile justice system. Sam also works with men who have been involved with domestic or family violence.

Sam is a Red Cross Community Partnerships and Development Officer forging important relationships in the Townsville area to strengthen an understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

He has led NAIDOC celebrations in Townsville and has also been selected to participate in the First Nations People Reference group, which will assist in developing a local Reconciliation Action Plan for the Townsville District Police.



Bhiamie Williamson, Research Associate and PhD Candidate
Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, Australian National University.  

Bhiamie will explore Indigenous approaches to disaster recovery, discussing how pre-existing intergenerational trauma in Indigenous communities impacts how accessible the recovery system is. Bhiamie will also share recommendations and guidance for non-indigenous people working with Indigenous communities in disaster recovery. 

Bhiamie is an Indigenous man from the Euahlayi people in north-west New South Wales, Australia. In 2014, Bhiamie graduated from the Australian National University (ANU) and in 2017 from the Masters of Indigenous Governance at the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

Bhiamie also holds graduate certificates in Indigenous Governance from the Native Nations Institute at the University of Arizona and Indigenous Trauma Care and Recovery Practice from the University of Wollongong.

Bhiamie’s research areas include Indigenous land management, cultural burning, Indigenous peoples and disaster recovery and Indigenous men and masculinities.



Amanda Leck, Executive Director, AIDR