26 May 2020

The theme for National Reconciliation Week (NRW 2020) ‘In this together’, is remarkably resonant given the current circumstances. In recognition of this year’s theme, Urbis and the Property Council of Australia have partnered to co-host a three-part virtual event series open to all staff across the country.

Throughout the week we will be joined by our partners Cox Inall Ridgeway (CIR), The Australian Literacy & Numeracy Foundation (ALNF) and Yerrabingin who will be sharing their stories and insights on three key topics that are tied to Urbis’ goal of shaping cities and communities for a better future:

  • Collaboration and Partnerships in Reconciliation – build upon established partnerships, and the ability to expand our contribution to reconciliation
  • Reconciliation and Community – explore ways to strengthen and support relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities that are mutually beneficial
  • Reconciliation Through Place – recognising and respecting the importance of place, connection to land, language and culture in placemaking by working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

During NRW 2020 we will be featuring artwork by ALNF Ambassador Jeremy Donovan of the Kuku Yalanji tribe and Kuku Nyungal clan on our website. His piece, titled Maapun (healing) was chosen as we feel it embodies this year’s theme.

Artist: Jeremy Donovan

“This painting is about a sacred tradition of traditional healing that falls in the lineage of my grandfather. It’s a privilege to carry on such knowledge and to be able to share with audiences around the world.” – Jeremy Donovan

The story behind the art is a reminder that reconciliation is a journey for all Australians and that we each have a role to play in moving towards a just, equitable and reconciled Australia.

Urbis is committed to advancing reconciliation through our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). This is an ongoing commitment as we seek to build upon the goals set over the past three years and embark on refreshing the RAP guided by our vision:

Our vision for Reconciliation is to be actively involved in supporting meaningful and lasting change in our spheres of influence.

In creating great cities and communities we can contribute to the inclusion and active participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

This commitment includes a range of initiatives and projects that Urbis has been involved in, including:

  • The establishment of an Aboriginal Cultural Heritage service offering
  • Sharing our RAP journey at the Property Council Staff Summit
  • Working with ALNF to develop opportunities to support Indigenous communities
  • Partnering with Yerrabingin to develop landscape concepts for proposals like Soper Place, Penrith
  • Working with Local Aboriginal Land Councils like the Nyamba Buru Yawuru in WA and the Darkinjung in NSW to assist in planning for and maximising their landholdings
  • Collaborating with CIR on the following projects:
    • The evaluation of the first year of the Commonwealth’s Indigenous Procurement Policy
    • The evaluation of the National Indigenous Pharmacy Programs
    • Evaluation of NSW Health’s cultural awareness training program, Respecting the Difference
    • The review of Indigenous Broadcasting Services

NRW 2020 is the perfect opportunity to propel our vision for reconciliation, by applying our sphere of influence to create a platform for our partners to be involved, share their knowledge and facilitate meaningful change.

The theme of ‘In this together’ is a clear reminder that whether it be in a crisis or reconciliation, there is still a long way to go and we are all on this journey together.

Initiatives such as this would not be possible without our passionate and dedicated RAP Working Group that includes Balazs Hanse, Ben Lyons, Dayle Bennett, Glen Power, Holly Maclean, Kris Nolan, Michael Stott, Natasha Stronach, Noor Syuhada Shamsul and Suzie Turner.

Thank you to Jeremy Donovan for allowing us to showcase his artwork.