The History Council of South Australia (HCSA) is the peak history body in South Australia, promoting history and raising its profile in the state. Incorporated in 2003, HCSA evolved from an informal ‘History Alliance’ initiated by the History Teachers Association of SA.
Organisation members include the main bodies concerned with history in this state and many regional historical societies; there is also provision for individual membership. As the HCSA does not receive any support from government at any level, it relies very heavily on the annual membership fees received from its individual and organisation members to support its activities.
There are many ways in which the HCSA promotes history in South Australia. It provides annual awards for practitioners of history, that is, people who write history, curate and stage exhibitions, or make contributions to history in the print, electronic or social media. It stages annual lectures in Adelaide and rural South Australia.
Our current source of income, annual subscriptions, is of limited size, which places limits on the range and scale of cultural activities we support. Currently, we carry out our activities for a cost of approximately $5000, drawn from our annual subscriptions.
If successful, the establishment of a dedicated fund through the ACF will allow the HCSA to increase the scale of the events it already funds, and it will allow us also to expand the range of the activities we promote and support to the benefit of historical culture in South Australia in a variety of forms.
Above all, it will allow us to employ a project officer, whose task it will be to organise activities, disseminate information about them and participate in the staging of them.
The main aim is to support the employment of a project officer for our organisation. To date, the work of organising, staging and advertising our cultural activities has been performed on an entirely voluntary basis, which places severe limits on the investment of the necessary labour.
The establishment of a fund will enable the employment of a part-time officer to take on a range of duties which together will enhance and promote historical culture in South Australia.
Moreover, funding would be available to stage those activities, which include annual history awards, history lectures in Adelaide and regional SA, support for historical publications and exhibitions, support for historical writing and research, and advocacy for the preservation of South Australia’s history and heritage.