“What if we could use wealth to heal rather than cause further harm? What if funders, philanthropists, and entrepreneurs could help restore the earth? What if money was spent trying out concepts that shatter current structures and systems that have turned much of the world into one vast market?” – Jennifer and Peter Buffett, from Edgar Villanueva’s book, Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal Divides and Restore Balance.

Edgar’s book is a good read, however, it didn’t bring anything new to the table that First Nations people in Australia didn’t already know – money is controlled by the coloniser, and the best solutions that need to be supported are from the community/grassroots organisations that help First Nations people instead of profiting from them.

An example of the ‘coloniser’ currently controlling the wealth is the Government, which spends large amounts of funding to ‘help’ First Nations people but “when state and territory government spending is included, mainstream spending climbs to over 80 per cent of the total expenditure on Indigenous people” – James Haughton’s of Indigenous budget review. In summary, most of the money goes back into government departments/programs, instead of directly into community where First Nations people can be empowered and have the responsibility to close the inequality gaps by themselves.

I’ve also seen this in the philanthropic and corporate sectors in Australia too.

Wealth in Australia was accumulated from the disposition and genocide of First Nations people….which was a long time ago you might think, however, the control of First Nations people is still continuing through the control of wealth in Australia.

This quick article doesn’t provide a solution to the problem though – sorry to disappoint when you were probably getting into it… But this is a call to action – I would love to work with First Nations people already working in this area like Edgar (Native American) and non-Indigenous organisations that control the wealth.

I’m currently conducting a survey with Venture Capital (VC) Firms to find out how they are helping First Nations entrepreneurs which has been surprisedly well received with 22% of VC Firms I reached out to willing to help by providing data and feedback on my research.

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting any VC Firms to help even though they’ve been promoting their social good/justice (like this) so 22% is like hitting the jackpot which will help with developing theories on how wealth is currently controlled and distributed, and how community-controlled wealth (built on First Nations Entrepreneurship) is the solution.

Thank you to the organisations who currently control the wealth in Australia that have offered to help with my research, and if you’re a Government (anyone from the “National Indigenous Australians Agency” actually read my stuff? haha…), philanthropic or investment/wealth funds, please get in contact and be part of the solution instead of the problem…

CTA – please contact me at d.foley@barayamal if you’re able to help with this research.

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