NGALI GARIMA MALLA JUGUN (We Look After This Country) – A call for submissions

Brolgas art work by Phoebe McIlwraith

Key Dates:

Submissions open March 7

Submissions close April 6


(we look after this Country)

Through a new editorial partnership, Right Now and Groundswell are platforming stories that explore the intersection of climate change and human rights, pertaining to First Nations justice. ‘NGALI GARIMA MALLA JUGUN’ is a series of pieces rolled out from May to August 2023 led by First Nations Editor Phoebe McIlwraith.


For previously unpublished non-fiction, personal essays, experimental non-fiction, opinion pieces and interviews [maximum 1000 words] from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander  storytellers.The tone should be personal; using local and lived histories to ground big conversations. See Phoebe McIlwraith on ‘Dancing with Country’ and Teila Watson on ‘Ecocide and Genocide’ to give you a sense of what we’re looking for. 


Climate justice is First Nations justice – our voices, guidance and governance are integral to climate-safe futures, where Country is healthy and people can thrive. Come story the journeys our Old People began for us, journeys of listening to Country and leaving behind better for all jarjum (children) to come. 

WIHYA- (talk) TO US

What do you love about your Country? Are there stories or places you can share? 

How do we see climate impacting these places, our places, us? 

What yarns are missing from the conversation – culture/colonisation/sovereignty? 

How do we talk about climate and human rights on our own terms – connecting global conversations to millennia-old environmental leadership and care? 


Send submissions to

Submissions must include your name, contact details, a brief cover letter, 50-100 word third-person bio and (optionally) your social media handles.

Successful submissions will work with First Nations Editor Phoebe McIlwraith and be published on Right Now and Groundswell. The fee for each piece is $500.

You must warrant that your work is original and does not breach copyright nor defame any person. Right Now will not publish material that is untrue, seeks to defame or is discriminatory in any way.

Phoebe McIlwraith is a Bundjalung and Worimi Saltwater dubay/galbaan. She has been a writer and consultant for groups such as Common Ground First Nations, Indigenous X, Groundswell, Adobe Australia and the North Face.

Right Now is a platform for independent pieces that focus on underreported human rights issues in compelling and creative ways that are relevant to our everyday lives. 

Groundswell is a community made to accelerate and amplify climate action. Through engaging with their community of donors Groundswell funds strategic and high impact climate advocacy.