More than just land

Returning land is part of the process of truth, reconciliation and inclusion.

Justice is a choice

We’re not here to take your land, because that is what happened to us.

We’re here to ask for your help.

An ancient tenure

Every single freehold title in Tasmania sits on
land owned by Aborigines for millennia.

Many want a way to make it right.

We’re not asking everything back. We know that’s not possible and it’s not something we expect of our neighbours, friends and colleagues.

But we do know there is a sense of justice, leadership and a spirit of giving in every person and many have the ability to help.

Some people own more land than they need. Some simply can’t manage what they have. Others know their land holds Aboriginal stories and evidence of occupation that date back to when time began. 

Giving Land Back is the way everyday people can help, knowing land will be owned by the whole Aboriginal Community, in perpetuity. 

Giving Land Back can help right past wrongs. 

Leading the way – Windsong 

In 2019, Jane and Tom Teniswood gave half of Windsong, their 220 ha Little Swanport property, to the Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania.

It was a first for private land returns in Tasmania and Windsong is now Aboriginal Land.

Their generosity evoked a sense of justice, reconciliation and pride in Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people alike. 

It received extensive media coverage like this online ABC story and was celebrated by people of all political persuasions.

The Teniswoods have led the way and inspired our campaign. Giving Land Back is our invitation for others to follow the Teniswood’s lead by gifting land or making a tax deductible donation so we can buy it.


“This land embodies all that Tom and I believe in, and we wanted our Aboriginal friends to be part of that.

Reconciliation is great but it’s so much talk, so many documents and no action. This is just a symbol of action. This land will relink us all, it’s already relinking us.”

Jane Teniswood – Windsong 2019

Protecting cultural and natural values 

Returning land to the ownership and management of Aboriginal people protects all values on Country. Cultural Landscapes include ancient Aboriginal values, water and rare and threatened species.

After over 40,000 years of occupation and management by Aboriginal people, the natural and cultural values of Country are inseparably intertwined.

 Aboriginal rangers manage fire, feral species, rewilding and other aspects of management plans to help protect plant and animal species, some found nowhere else on Earth.

Aboriginal Land can be formal declared as Indigenous Protected Areas and become a part of Tasmania and Australia’s formal reserve network. Funding for some management is provided by the Federal Government’s Working on Country program.


How does it work? 

The Aboriginal Land Council  of Tasmania is a registered charity that owns and manages land on behalf of Tasmania’s Aboriginal Community.  

Financial donations are tax deductible. They will be placed in a dedicated fund to accrue until invested in the purchase and management of targeted blocks of land. Gifts of land can be directly transferred to the legal ownership of the Aboriginal Community though the Land Council.

Land acquisitions will be set aside and managed for its cultural, Community and natural values by Aboriginal rangers trained in land management. Once returned, land will be owned by the Aboriginal Community in perpetuity. 

Co-contributions for land purchases can be sought from entities such as the Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation, meaning the full purchase price need not be raised solely from the public.