The oral history of the Ballarat and District Aboriginal Co-op's first 40 years has been told and preserved with a new website.
BADAC Stories will go live on Friday morning and celebrates the story of BADAC and Ballarat's Aboriginal community.
The website features a series of sit-down interviews with people involved with the co-op over the past 40 years, including the elders that founded the organisation and those that followed in their footsteps.
BADAC celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2019 and received a $15,000 state government local history grant the project which has been a two-year process interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
BADAC chief executive Karen Heap said it was important to get the story on the record as elders and founding members started to get older.
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"We don't want to miss out on any of the history or the past for our future young people to learn and have knowledge of," she said.
"I think it's really important to be able to get it down, and I think the elders that were involved have done a fantastic job and they've told their stories and told stories about this place and about our community, which is good.
"They're all good, and they're all different in their own way, because everyone that has had a part of this organisation has experienced different things as they've gone through."
Ms Heap originally joined the organisation in 1982 and has been told many of the stories, or was even present for some, that were told in the project which now have been documented.
Ms Heap said there would be many people who worked hard behind the scenes at BADAC that would receive recognition through the project.
"It should go out to them all because in one way or another, the people that were interviewed have had something to do with this organisation, whether it be working for here or being on the board of directors or just being a participant in our programs," she said.
"They've all had something to do with the organisation over the past 40 years, so that's really important because that's how you grow a strong community."
The videos and other content will be available for free on a standalone website, which Ms Heap said was important to make the stories as accessible as possible.
"We wanted to make sure that we catered for our older generations but also our younger ones as well so that anyone can have a look at it easily," she said.
"For us, if nothing else, it's taught us how important our history is and how we need to nurture that and preserve it."
BADAC Stories will be available free from 9am Friday at badacstories.org.
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