New Indigenous artwork helps tell the story of ACSL and our commitment to a safe Church


This contemporary Aboriginal artwork tells the story of ACSL’s mission: to create a culture of safety, care, and respect within the Catholic Church in Australia, especially for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The artwork celebrates inclusion, restorative practice, and the concept of safe spaces while representing the transformative journey of healing and spirituality.

Created by nationally recognised Aboriginal Artist and Wiradjuri woman, Lani Balzan, it tells the story of ACSL and its commitment to creating safe spaces for all, especially Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Through a blend of symbols and colours, this piece reflects the journey of healing, spirituality, and community.

“The central element of the artwork is the Gathering Symbol, representing Australian Catholic Safeguarding as an organisation. This symbol is adorned with a cross, embodying spirituality, faith, and guidance, which ACSL provides to those in need.

Surrounding the central symbol are 12 smaller Gathering Symbols, symbolising safe spaces. These spaces are built upon strong foundations, denoted by their solidity and interconnectedness, emphasising the importance of community, and working together.
The footprints leading along winding pathways represent the journeys that individuals have undertaken to overcome trauma. These paths symbolise the support and care provided by Australian Catholic Safeguarding, guiding them towards healing and restoration.

The background of the artwork is filled with an array of dots, which symbolise the overshadowing effects of the past on the lives of survivors of child sexual abuse. These dots acknowledge the challenges that individuals have faced but also represent the enduring commitment to ensuring people are protected from abuse in the future. The dots are a lighter colour than the foreground, symbolising the diminishing influence of the past as we move towards a brighter and safer future.”

Lani Balzan