Federation of Australian Historical Societies Council is profoundly
disappointed to inform the 100,000 members and 1000 community/volunteer
historical and heritage societies and museums across Australia whom we
represent, that after at least thirty years the Commonwealth
government will no longer support the FAHS or other forms of voluntary
community heritage. In the current round of budget talks neither the Minister nor the department is willing to find ways to support our sector.
The implications for FAHS are disastrous. We are
already trimming staff hours and are abandoning some of the projects
that we had planned for 2018. While we are determined that FAHS will
live and work on, we are not sure what functions of the FAHS can be
saved. Unless there is a change of heart or an alternative source of
funding can be found, the organisation will be severely diminished and
most functions closed.
We will be winding down our publications and training guides, and our
future capacity to participate in the GLAMPeak project to assist the
digitisation of historical societies’ collections is now in jeopardy.
FAHS will be greatly limited in its ability to represent and support
community volunteers and societies in their invaluable work of
collecting, preserving, researching and publicising our history and
heritage, and in their contributions to education and tourism.
The work of the FAHS has been recognised for more than thirty years with
small operational grants from the Commonwealth government. In recent
years it has been $80,000 p.a., which is miniscule as a proportion of
federal government spending. Nevertheless, this support is being
The FAHS represents its constituent members (RHSV, RAHS, RHSQ, HTSA, HSNT, RWAHS, CDHS and THRA) at a federal level as well as developing
resources, projects and responses to issues that are common to all
historical groups across Australia.
What can I do?