In Conversation with Sam Savage

Sam Savage is the Northern Queensland Emergency Services Regional Coordinator for Australian Red Cross where he manages response, recovery and community resilience programs with a focus on psychosocial support.

He is also the Chairperson of the First Nations Recovery Group, a national network within the Australian Red Cross team and a member of the organisation’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership Team.

Sam joins us to discuss the specific challenges faced by Indigenous communities in a disaster context, what kind of action organisations like Red Cross are taking to address the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, and how our emergency management systems can improve to better serve marginalised communities.

In this conversation, Sam and Scotia discuss:

  • The purpose of the recently formed Red Cross First Nations Recovery Group and the work it is doing to add a cultural lens to the emergency services sector by deepening knowledge about and tailoring information for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
  • The role that culture and connection to Country plays in health and well-being for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and why it is essential to contextualise disaster recovery around cultural practices and Traditional knowledge
  • How we can create better systems and practices in emergency management to support and empower marginalised communities towards ongoing community resilience
  • Sam’s role on the National Taskforce for Creative Recovery and how cross-sector collaboration is essential to finding effective ways to support communities
  • The importance of inclusion and the work Sam is doing around advocating for recognition and inclusion, to ensure that First Nations people have a seat at the table in decision-making around disaster preparedness, recovery and response


Produced by Scotia Monkivitch and Jill Robson

Edited and mixed by Glen Morrow

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