Embedding our Reconciliation Action Plan into our work

At a recent team day, several staff members across the organisation shared how they have been embedding our newly endorsed Reconciliation Action Plan into their daily work.

Reconciliation Action Plan Session

Embedding aspects of our Reconciliation Action Plan into our daily work ensures that as an organisation we genuinely honour our commitments to reconciliation. During a recent team day, with all staff in attendance, there was an opportunity for several staff members to share their personal and professional journeys on initiatives they have been undertaking that are contributing to our Reconciliation Action Plan.

This session also provided staff the time to reflect, consider and plan how they will continue to build on their own understanding and knowledge of reconciliation whilst also beginning the process of developing actions at an individual and team level for 2023.

Sharing with the team

On the day, the organisation heard from commercial, services and research and evaluation team members. Each team member provided insight into the work they, their teams, and partners have or are currently undertaking toward reconciliation. Insights into what was shared are below.

Inspiration from participating in BlackCard cultural training has led to one staff member committing to researching the lands in which they live. This exploration has resulted in this staff member developing a well-established knowledge base regarding the local history of First Nations peoples and discoveries of sacred landmarks. The staff member also connected with a local Elder and arranging for him to conduct a Welcome to Country ceremony at a staff retreat (pictured above). From an organisational focus, this staff member also shared how they have identified Indigenous businesses within our communities to ensure that, where possible, our organisation utilises these to purchase goods and services.

Members of our Research and Evaluation team were also inspired by the BlackCard cultural training and shared how reflecting on their learnings has led to actions. The team members shared that after completing the training, they identified a focus area of embedding cultural safety into everyday practice. As a starting point, the team members began researching and discovered the Australian Evaluation Society First Nations Cultural Safety Framework (Gollan, S. & Stacey, K. (2021) Australian Evaluation Society, Melbourne). They now have plans to utilise this framework to support them in reflecting on what is currently working well and identify opportunities to improve practice throughout all stages of our evaluation process.

After undertaking cultural awareness training in a previous role, this team member shared how they have remained motivated to learn, listen, be curious, ask questions and embed their knowledge daily. Their curiosity led to reaching out to The First People’s Assembly after they presented at an Our Place team meeting to invite them to tour their site. This visit allowed Our Place and partner organisations to learn more about The First People’s Assembly and has resulted in a meaningful and ongoing working relationship. This team member also shared that the on site Koorie Engagement workforce (KEW), of which Our Place is a part, has a large focus on continuity of learning and is also exploring potential opportunities for a site-wide Reconciliation Action Plan.

Another site shared how their site-partnership group worked together to develop a site-wide Acknowledgement of Country. Due to historical complexities relating to formal recognition of specific clans and wanting to ensure inclusivity, the site worked alongside the Department of Education’s Senior Koorie Advisor to formulate the Acknowledgement. This work has now resulted in the site having its own site-wide Acknowledgement that all partners endorse and also has established terms for how and when the Acknowledgement is used.

To learn more about our Reconciliation Action Plan Click Here