Updated: Jul 8, 2022
October 2021 saw Anywise, Australian owned and Melbourne-based consultancy, achieve its first major step with its Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) being formally approved by Reconciliation Australia.
This means a course has been set, a plan mapped out, and wheels are in motion for Anywise Consulting to work towards reconciliation with the Traditional Custodians of the land we walk upon. Reconciliation Australia is an organisation that workswith companies, schools, communities, and people far and wide to strengthen relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and those of non-Indigenous heritage.
The path to writing our Reconciliation Action Plan was a carefully considered one. With the aid of many consultations with Reconciliation Australia, Wemba Wemba Consulting, the assistance of https://www.wurundjeri.com.au/, as well as other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
Steven Kouloumendas, Anywise General Manager, stated, “Our actions over the last year reflect an ongoing commitment from Anywise, since its inception in 2014 to be a leading Small Medium Enterprise that cares about the community including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.”
From conception to action, how and why?
Anywise has always had strong values in giving back to the community. As much as 20% of our annual profits is donated to not-for-profits organisations and charities or as pro-bono services we offer to help community groups find their feet and thrive. Our B-Corp status is not simply a logo for us. It is something we take pride in and will continue to keep working towards bettering daily.
With this in mind, it wasn’t difficult for the people who make up Anywise to see a gap we could improve on, an opportunity to connect with the traditional custodians of our country and do our part in working towards reconciliation.
A small team within Anywise took to the task and began learning more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and history, both the history shared with non-indigenous Australians and the long history that stretches before colonists landed on Australian shores. Reaching out to organisations within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community such as Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation and Wemba Wemba Consulting. Most notably Auntie Georgina, a Wurrundjeri Elder, lent her personal experience during the creation of our Reconciliation Action Plan and shared her knowledge with Anywise. Purchasing an authentic Aboriginal artwork (image above) by Sean Bundjalung titled ‘My Country, Bundjalung, Land & Sea’, has a place of pride within the new office space. Something to act as a reminder to staff of the path we are on to reconciliation and pay homage to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples past, present, and emerging.
What is around the corner this year?
By December 2022 Anywise is aiming to:
Work more closely with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owned and operated businesses throughout Australia. Supply Nation for instance is a great reference.
Coordinate with a Wurundjeri Elder or community member to officiate a Smoking Ceremony. It will officially open our office in Collingwood and offer our respect to the Traditional Custodians.
Request help from a Wurundjeri Elder or community member in naming the various rooms and spaces within our new office space.
Improve employment outcomes by increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander recruitment within our company.
Consider other First Nations Peoples globally wherever we operate. Specifically in the USA, where our North American team is based.
Promote reconciliation through our sphere of influence with contractors, clients, and the various other connections we have.
Participate in an external National Reconciliation Week (NRW) event as well as an external NAIDOC week event.
Register via Reconciliation Australia’s website to begin developing our next RAP and continuing the Anywise path to Reconciliation.
And much, much more.