Project Grant Year Titlesort descending Project Overview
2013 ANU Dialogue Workshop
David Purnell
Dialogue Workshop
The ANU Dialogue group held a workshop near Canberra. Eleven participants took part in an extended conversation co-facilitated by all those involved. Themes included definitions, processes, purpose and potential of dialogue. Silence, movement, music, and creative listening were all used. Since then the Dialogue group has continued to meet monthly, with a sharing of models of dialogue and a mutual learning about how it works in practice and the role of facilitator.
2011 to 2014 Best Festival Ever: How To Manage A Disaster

David Finnigan (Boho Interactive)

Best Festival Ever places the audience in charge of programming and managing their own festival.  Part theatre show, part performance lecture and part boardgame, Best Festival Ever introduces participants to concepts from Systems Science and asks how we can best understand and manage the complex systems we live in.
"Systems science is abstract and can be difficult to communicate. Boho’s work builds well-crafted, entertaining metaphors, bringing these concepts to life for audiences from all walks of life. We sorely need this kind of experience because many of the show’s systems concepts are missing from our public discourse, and yet we cannot hope to navigate the challenges facing humanity without them." [Dr Nicky Grigg, CSIRO]
Boho’s tabletop systems gaming' project has now successfully undertaken seasons in London, Stockholm, Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra. Since October 2014, Boho has presented nearly 50 separate performances of the work for theatres, museums, science institutions, thinktanks, universities, high schools, conferences, policy-makers and corporate audiences.
2018 Canberra a Restorative City: ACT Restorative Practice Workshop
ACT Restorative Communities Network and Relationships Australia
A workshop on Restorative Practice (RP) led by Hull RP experts, with a particular focus on schools in the Belconnen are which NED had previously supported.
2020 Canberra Alliance for Participatory Democracy

In 2020 NED supported the Canberra Alliance for Participatory Democracy to invigorate engagement in democratic participation. This involved further developing and improving their website to provide resources, ideas and information. While the focus is on the Australian Capital Territory this site is useful for anyone interested in Participatory Democracy.

In their application Secretary, Peter Tait, wrote, “Our fear that the current socio-political arrangements are leading to an impoverished humanity and potentially the collapse of human civilisation, this motivates us to improve our democratic system so that governments deliver for the benefit of all people, not just the 1 percent.”

2018 Conference Attendance: Making Newcastle a Restorative City
13 June 2018
Jacques Boulet
2019 Conference Presentation - Healing Power of Reconnection to the Earth
The NED Inc. Grants Program has funded Barbara Beatson for travel expenses to attend a conference and give a presentation. 
The conference she presented at was the 21st International Conference of the ISPS in Rotterdam, 28th August-1st September 2019.
The theme of the conference was "STRANGER IN THE CITY: The circular relationship between alienation and psychosis and the healing power of human reconnection".
The title of Barbara's presentation was : "Healing Power of Reconnection to the Earth".
ISPS is the International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis. More about ISPS on the ISPS website:
Cooya Beach project

The Kuku Yalanji people of Far North Queensland have developed an ambitious plan to regenerate their language and culture and preserve both for future generations. As they told us language comes from Country and all the songs, dances, artworks, and ways in which people live are connected. They developed an e-book to support language learning and have had remarkable success in persuading the local school to teach language to all the children. As part of this project, they approached NED to support their Cooya Beach project.

Cooya Beach comprises eight acres of land which are the remaining holding of Bennet Walker’s family where bush foods and bush medicines are being planted and protected. Bennet has extensive knowledge of the area and the traditional use of plants.

Other fruit and vegetables are also planted to support Kuku Yalanji people. NED provided funding for a borehole and pump, water tanks and a lockable shed. The shed provides storage for garden tools and a safe space for local artists who are sleeping rough to keep their art supplies.

Plans are to further develop the project as an attraction in this popular tourist area and provide an income for Kuku Yalanji people. Their vision includes guided tours, cooking demonstrations, selling bush foods and a shop on the highway that travels past the property.

Our relationship with the Kubirriwarra Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation has developed and expanded into working together to secure federal arts and culture funding for a project that records language, art, artefact making, songs and dancing connected with six sites of cultural significance. A film will be produced and hopefully there will be an exhibition later in 2023. Like most projects there have been delays and glitches due to the pandemic.

2017 Daring to Refuse
Chris Brown
This project is collecting a variety of conscientious objector stories and using them as the basis for a radio play script which will be recorded and made publicly available in October-November 2018 to coincide with the centenary of the end of World War I. The stories will be drawn from a diversity of time periods and conflict contexts (from World War I to contemporary examples) and is designed as a counterpoint to the many celebrative commemorations seen regarding the centenary of World War I. In contrast to these events and their recognition of those who served in military operations, this project seeks to recognise and celebrate those who refused to participate in war.
The stories capture not just the courage of these individuals, but also the ideas, visions and possibilities they provided as an alternative to violent warfare. By sharing these highly personal and compelling accounts of principled opposition to war/violence this project hopes to generate increased awareness and acknowledgement of conscientious objector stories and the constructive ideas they offer in the pursuit of a world without war. By making these stories widely available during the centenary of World War I it is hoped that this project will prompt an ongoing discussion about contemporary war-making, its structural causes/undercurrents and the importance/possibility/emergence of alternative nonviolent forms of struggle. Ultimately, this project suggests/highlights how war is not an inevitable component in human/social relations and that we have many brave stories of resistance and construction from which to draw in building a more peaceful future.
2020 Earthworker

Inspired by the Mondragon Cooperative in Spain, Earthworker was established to facilitate the establishment of worker cooperatives in Victoria. The emphasis is on creating work that is people and planet centred offering meaningful work opportunities and a real say in how things get done.

In 2020 NED Foundation supported Earthworker to develop and deliver a training program for people interested in establishing their own worker cooperative. A key element of this training was the incorporation of the lived experience of one of the facilitators in setting up the RedGum worker Coop.

The project presented some challenges and opportunities for learning and growth with facilitators noting that they would need to pay more attention to the primary focus of participants in future. Many were interested in exploration but only three looked like they would go on to establish a cooperative.

The program is to be reviewed and a series of ‘bootcamps’ are under consideration as a lead up to another 10-week course. Project leaders are keen to see the concept of cooperation being introduced in the high school curriculum as they are adamant that learning to work in cooperation is key to creating a healthy alternative to the toxic workplaces experienced by so many.

2017 Everything You Ever Wanted
Rachael Roberts
The grant supported the creative development of ‘Everything You Ever Wanted’, exploring the science of dieting, weight loss and disordered eating, the project is a deeply personal undertaking into a touchy subject area. After nearly a decade of dieting, a fixation on weight loss and some terrible habits around food and body image, Rachel found herself at a rock bottom seeking professional help for binge eating. The process of recovery introduced her to the work of several dietitians and eating disorder psychologists who position themselves as anti-diet. This work explores research from the Health at Every Size community (HAES), the work of Ellyn Satter (MS, RDN, MSSW) as well as the practice of Intuitive Eating. Drawing on her personal experience, Rachel explored the biology and psychology of dieting and how detrimental it is to our physical and mental health – and how the fear of being fat plays out in our relationships with our bodies and the bodies of others. Joining the voices of the anti-dieters, fat activists and scientists before her, this project aims to examine weight bias and disrupt our relationship with dieting. 
Rachel worked to engage young people (with a focus on high school students) and others who have a history of eating disorders through the work, giving them an opportunity to critique the messages they receive about food and self-worth, and critically engage in a conversation about body image.
2018 First People First

In 2018 NED supported the First Peoples First Cultural Foundation (based in Mossman) to develop an e-book to support the learning of Kuku Yalanji Language. Balkan Bakal Ku Ku Kubirrinka Yala Manjalaka tells the story of Kubirri and The Mountain.

The project is inclusive of original artworks; oral storytelling, songs, dance and film combined within a multi touch bi-lingual E-book. This is suitable for and enjoyed by people of all ages and is now available on a variety of easily accessible digital formats at  You will be asked to subscribe solely for the purpose of sending notification of bug fixes, improvements and version updates.

The E-Book is also used as a community teaching resource dedicated to assisting, supporting, maintaining and re-igniting the Kuku Yalanji language which is on the list of identified endangered languages.  It also promotes Aboriginal culture/s and language/s for the benefit of all future generations.

According to group leader, John Hartly, ‘Maintaining cultural knowledge and the nuances that exist between land and language should be of critical importance to all Australians.’ He asserts that language is the tap root of cultural identity and of a belonging that goes back and touches the very ancient. The continued disintegration of First Peoples distinct cultural richness and language vibrancy is a loss not only for Australia but, for all of humanity the world-over. Yet, within a matter of a generation (30 years) remaining First Peoples languages across this continent and indeed across the globe will, if not urgently addressed, become all but extinct.

2016 Human Earth Systems Performance
23 July 2016
David Finnigan
In 2016, NED supported David to begin development of a new performance looking at the human-earth system.
Grant purpose:
To help scope the development of the Performance project – a presentation that would highlight ‘big picture’ concepts about the future and its implications, given the physical and social boundaries of planet earth.
A solo performance work looking at the entire Human-Earth System - the whole planet as a linked system. The purpose of the show is to allow an audience to engage with the broad scale complexity of the global system, and to help us answer questions like:
  • What are the key drivers of the system?
  • Where are we headed as a society? As a species?
  • Where can we best intervene to make changes at the global level?

Over 2017-18, David undertook interviews with more than 30 scientists, building up a map of the big changes happening in the world today. The result of this research was a new performance entitled You're Safe Til 2024. With musician Reuben Ingall, David performed this 'live documentary' discussing climate and global change, and how we need to respond to it.

The show premiered at the Griffin Theatre in April 2019 before touring to Bunjil Place Melbourne, Smiths Alternative in Canberra, Straits Clan Singapore and the Sydney Opera House.

2016 Integrative Theatre
18 June 2016
David Finnigan


Support for a period of three months at the Environmental Institute of University College, London, researching, learning and developing a theatre model for use in various contexts in Australia.
2016 Kippax Community Garden, ACT
Gordon Ramsey of the Uniting Care
Funding support for a community garden project.
2017 Mandala Magic
David Salomon
A short documentary showing how colouring and conversation circles have helped many women living in shelters, outreach programs and emergency motel accommodation recover from the shock and trauma of violence domestic violence. The calm, creative and resourceful state induced by colouring is an antidote to the chaos they have experienced. Women in crisis have numerous and complex challenges in overcoming the injuries inflicted on them, the trauma to their children and the vulnerability of their pets. Many have found sanctuary in colouring and conversation circles and are able to plan safer, healthier futures for themselves and their children. Dr Carl Jung’s insights into the healing power of mandalas and the new discoveries in neuroscience informed the project.
Mandala Magic explores how participants tap into the “Wise Older Women Within” by talking to women with direct experience of the method either as clients, support workers or program managers. A number of women tell how they began their journey as clients and later became social workers themselves. The film is being distributed online and to 20 women’s shelters and domestic violence services along with a box of The Big Girls Little Colouring Book. The film will also be used for staff development and training for women’s health workers and as a peer education tool.
Men's Table

The first Men’s Table began in 2011 with twelve men who have met once a month for dinner ever since. The Men’s Table creates a unique environment for men to share openly about their lives, their challenges, their highs, and lows with a group of men who they learn to trust and respect.

Groups of adult men meet monthly to share a simple meal and talk about the issues that are impacting on their lives and wellbeing. Each group is locally initiated and organised by its members with support and networking provided through a central office (The Kitchen). Leadership is shared between members in a mutual-help model. The Men’s Table creates a uniquely safe environment for men to share openly about their lives and challenges with a group of men who they learn to trust and respect.

The approach creates a sense of belonging, community, peer support and camaraderie that is lacking for many men. Belonging to a Men's Table contributes to mental, emotional, and social wellbeing whilst being a powerful support to individual members negotiating life challenges. It is a preventive strategy, promoting the health and wellbeing of members throughout their life journey. The Men’s Table is a restorative practice. Whilst contributing to strengthening the relationships men have with other men, it also strengthens social connection and a sense of community It is acts to heal relationships men have with their own identity as a man and with other men. The stereotype of masculinity perpetuated in Australian culture is of a ‘real man’ who does not show emotion or vulnerability, does not reach out for help, and instead maintains a superficial level of connection and sharing with other men. The Men’s Table is helping to break this stereotype by offering a safe place for men to explore and practice alternative versions of masculinity with other men, ones in which men can share their feelings, be open and vulnerable.

NED supported this group with a small grant and mentoring throughout the project. Their intention was to further develop Co-Hosts (men in the community who take the initiative to call a new Table in and then facilitate in the first few months) through the creation of a program curriculum, and digital and video tools to complement and replicate what was already in practice. Mentoring proved to be a critical element in the project with adjustments being made as the project leaders learned and evolved their practice. Ultimately their approach was documented in a Model of Care which now acts as a guide when new Tables are formed. Evaluation and follow up has demonstrated that this was an extraordinarily successful and effective project.

2018 Milingimbi Spoke – Rulku Wangan
Milingimbi Womens - Group Gwen Warmbirrirr & Elizabeth Ganygulpa    
The Project was a local community response to observing that a number of young people were losing their way and getting into trouble. It was decided to take a group of 10 young people on a relay bicycle ride from Palmerston to Alice Springs. This ride was inspired by a group who rode horses on a similar journey.
The Bike ride is called ‘Milingimbi Spoke – Rulku-Wangan’ for the next generation of Yolngu to raise a voice to Australia.  
It is a coo-ee call to young people of Australia to come into the heart of Australia to meet with the heart of God.
It is also a call of remembrance to honour the Aboriginal people who fought in the WW1 and WW2, with a gathering at ANZAC Hill in Alice Springs to honour the Aboriginal ANZACS who fought in these wars, particularly to commemorate the 100-year battle at Sameakh in Palestine where a number of Indigenous Lighthorse men were involved in the battle. This will be awakening in the young riders a new sense of honouring of those who have gone before.
We aim to help the young men see the positive role and position of Aboriginal people in this nation past present and future.
The ride will be 1500kms from Darwin to Alice Springs and we will take one month to complete it.  
Riders and a support crew visited with many communities on their journey and talked with elders and community members gaining support and offering inspiration.
2018 Newcastle as a Restorative City Symposium
University of Newcastle Law Faculty
Major sponsor and ongoing support of project through funding and NED Inc Board member sitting on Steering, and Advisory Committees and Events Sub Committee.


Ngukurr Language Centre

Ngukurr, formerly Roper River Mission (1908−1968), is a remote Aboriginal community on the banks of the Roper River in southern Arnhem Land, Northern Territory.

Founded as the Roper River Mission in 1908, the settlement was taken over by the Northern Territory Government's Welfare Department in 1968, and handed over to the community in 1988, at which time it was renamed Ngukurr.

NED was approached by the Ngukurr Language Centre who outlined the need to preserve the Ritharrŋu/Wägilak, one of the local languages, using film made in language. The language is critically endangered with fewer than twenty speakers left and the request to make a film came from within the community who expressed a desire to have both an oral and a visual record of natural speakers. The film is a document of culture as community members share stories in language (subtitled). Language learning has also been incorporated so that the film provides an ongoing resource to the community.

A review of the project indicates that the people have welcomed the film. Being able to observe people they know out on Country while speaking their language and sharing stories of importance to them is now a valued cultural artifact and is being used in informal learning as well as language classes. The film has also screened on NITV.

2017 to 2018 PACE Program: Macquarie University
December 2017 to June 2018 (Final Report)
NED Inc. engaged, subsidised and supervised two Sociology undergraduate students from Macquarie University to initiate research within the following framework:
Research Framework PACE
Overall approach: conduct a Formative Evaluation of the SDN workshop as a model of social development for facilitating change on a personal and community level.
  1. Analysis of the context and field of Social Development (“What’s happening out there?”):
  2. Establish a foundation for the examination of what constitutes ‘Social Development’ (includes a literature review).
  3. Collation of the primary exponents of Social Development, and their areas of operation – firstly nationally, then globally.
  4. Analysis of SDN’s core practice – the SDN Workshop (“Do we satisfy people’s needs?”):
  5. The design and format of SDN workshops (in preparation for further study).
  6. Examine the reasons participants want to attend a workshop. (Comparisons to alternative offerings.)
  7. Explore the interpersonal and group dynamics that unfold within an SDN workshop.
  8. Initiate a body of feedback from past SDN workshop participants, to assess what are the perceived areas of longer-term effectiveness or otherwise of the workshop’s influence socially and personally.
  9. Future evolution of SDN (How can we adapt and participate?):
  10. Expanding demographics at workshops: how can we bring in, or how can we reach out to, a wider demographic?
  11. Roles for the SDN Workshop as a support in the wider fields of social and personal development.
  12. Embracing Social Media: how can we carry the essence of SDN into the new social environments that are evolving?
2020 Prison Fellowship

Prison Fellowship Australia is a community of restoration working from multiple angles to restore the human damage of crime: prisoners, crime victims, families of prisoners are all involved.

In 2020 NED supported them to extend this program into North and Far North Queensland and to modify it to meet the cultural needs of First Nations Peoples.  Our support enabled changes to the program to allow it to be run where it was not possible to engage face-to-face with victims.

The project engaged in learning more about the first people’s culture and challenges facing indigenous Australians through consultations with Aunty Ruth Hegarty (survivor of crime at Cherboug Mission), Visit to Hymba Yumba school, Consultation with indigenous teachers and NGOs who have undertaken programs northern Queensland.  The curriculum was updated to improve accessibility to diverse reading levels and a culturally diverse audience, and the structure was improved to shorten the course and give increased direction to facilitators

Video stories of crime victims which enhance the 7-week curriculum were filmed along with interview style feature videos documenting powerful experiences of crime victim stories and their struggles in coping with trauma, loss and grief.

A core team has been recruited and trained in preparation for running the first in prison program in North Queensland.

The breakthrough Sycamore Tree justice program has featured on national media and has been implemented in over 40 countries. It brings crime victims and prisoners together in a secure area of a local prison for seven sessions, focussing on the impact of crime.

2017 Re-localising: skills, food and community conversation
Nikki Marshall
The project focuses on three interconnected localising initiatives:
  1. Compiling and promoting ‘Where to go to get it’- an accessible register of skills, produce, knowledge and creativity incorporating three rural settlements on the boundary of Hepburn and Mt Alexander shires- Yandoit, Clydesdale and Franklinford- to support local livelihoods and community connection.
  2. Skills training in website administration, e-news and social media for Localising Leanganook, to promote community conversations and initiate actions which sustain viable local economies, act on social and ecological justice, reclaim democracy, revitalise spirituality, create new paradigms, showcase innovative and sustainable local initiatives, and incubate ideas and strategies that strengthen community connection and resilience across central Victoria.
  3. Initiating a food mapping exercise across Hepburn shire that demonstrates an interactive picture of ecology, food growing environments and human settlements. The common source map will enable communities within the shire and across central Victoria to be more strategic in relation to food production and distribution. It will also strengthen resilience as our climate changes; identify data needed to make significant structural changes and alternative visionary ways of approaching food growing; gain a broad view of past, current and future food growing activities/opportunities; provide an overview of conventional and regenerative food growing, food security, zoning, local livelihoods, common land food, share farming opportunities, fertile agricultural land, regenerative farming etc.; and contribute towards maintaining prime agricultural land and central Victoria as a regional food bowl.
2016 Systems Thinking Training Module
23 July 2016
David Finnigan


Suitable for use by school students in creating games about systems they are in. There is a plan for this to be developed initially in London, then brought to Australia.
2018 The Last Word - Triumph, and Tragedy, Hope and Heartbreak in the Life of Gunnedah
Gunnedah and District Historical Society Inc. (Marie Hobson)
‘The Last Word’ a book which turns the lens on around 750 Gunnedah and district residents who have lived and died in the town.
The book provides a snapshot of those who helped to create the community through sharing of local family history so that people know who they are and where they have come from and how history has shaped who they are now and the towns’ development.
This program contributes to improving linkages, mutual acceptance and co-operation as people develop a deeper appreciation of other residents through shared stories and examination of how their lives have overlapped. Storytelling has been shown to facilitate the development of stronger bonds between people as they begin to understand the challenges faced by others and the contributions that have been made to their shared community.
The project also contributes to building a life-enhancing, inclusive ethos by demonstrating that the town community is interdependent and built on mutually beneficial relationships. It shows that the civic contribution made by individuals benefits others and the town as a whole.
2018 Trucked Off, Looking Through Windows project
Lorina Barker
‘Trucked Off’ will be created and performed as a complement to the Looking Through Windows exhibition at Redfern 107 Gallery, Sydney 14-25 November 2018.
The creative project explores the removal, dispossession and 'protection' of Aboriginal people in NSW.
‘Trucked Off’, and the Looking Through Windows project, engages with Aboriginal communities in Armidale, Bourke, Brewarrina, Campbelltown and Redfern – providing an opportunity for Aboriginal community members to access, endorse and take ownership of their stories, shared histories and creative artworks around removal, and to hear ‘the past echoing in the present’ as Elders share their experiences of being ‘Fenced In’ and ‘Locked Up’.
‘Trucked Off’ will be an immersive, interactive performance reflecting shared memories of forced removal. It will utilise the central prop of an Old Mission Truck (a 1930s Dodge Truck).Elders will reflect, remember, re-experience and re-story a historically important place and time.
Over several months and through a series of creative workshops in community, professional and emerging artists will collect oral histories, photograph and video document the creation and then the immersive performance (by artists, Elders and gallery visitors) of ‘Trucked Off’.
They will also transform Elders stories into song and poetry to be performed and included in the exhibition – a valuable record for the community and a way to use current technology to share history and culture.
2020 Where the Water Starts

In 2020 NED supported Amanda King in engaging an Impact Manager to assist in promoting her film, Where the Water Starts, which launched in 2021.

Amanda worked closely with Yuin Elder, Uncle Max Dulumunmun Harrison and Richard Swain, the Indigenous Ambassador, who holds an honorary role for the Invasive Species Council, to understand the issues relating to brumbies in Kosciuszko National Park. Both the environmental impacts and the way in which the issue affects the Aboriginal Community and their relationship with this site of significant spiritual significance have been considered. The appeal they make is for a limit to be placed on brumbies in the park rather than to remove their presence entirely. The film supports the ongoing work of Richard Swain who continues to campaign.

After seeing the destruction of the fragile alpine ecology of the Snowy Mountains firsthand, Richard Swain with the support of his partner, Alison decided to speak out. The trampling of hard hooved animals is endangering the long-term viability of the headwaters of the Murrumbidgee and the Murray Rivers. Thirty-four native species of plants and mammals are threatened by the impacts of the horse on their unique and sensitive habitat. Richard loves the bush and wildlife of the southern ranges of New South Wales, where he was born. As Indigenous Ambassador for the Invasive Species Council, Richard Swain has taken on a public role.

It is estimated that over 20,000 feral horses in the park are threatening the survival of 23 native plant species and 11 native animal species. Australia's alpine and sub-alpine terrain is extremely small amounting to 0.01 percent of our inhabited continent, the driest one on earth, yet it contributes almost 30% of the Murray-Darling Basin's water. Despite its significance as a water supply feral horses are degrading the headwaters of these major rivers, 'like elephants in stilettos', describing the impacts of feral animals on land, water, and country in Kosciuszko National Park. Yet a state law - The Kosciuszko Wild Horse Heritage Act - continues to protect a feral animal above the native species and environment. It is a challenge he embraces despite a negative and virulent social media campaign, which includes threats against him and Alison. Listed as a national heritage area in 2008 the Australian Alps remains vulnerable, particularly in NSW, because of the legal protection of feral horses.

2018 Workshop Attendance: Transforming Conflict – Group Conferencing (Restorative Practice)
Lesley Shuttleworth
29-31 August 2018
Mark Spain
17-19 October 2018
David Crew
28-30 November 2018