VOICE. TREATY. TRUTH the return of the voice
This week we celebrated NAIDOC with our 2nd Annual NAIDOC Corporate Breakfast.
Corporate Australia holds the capacity to employ, expand and understand more about First Nations people. An activity like this also aligns with many Reconciliation Plans – I don’t want to underplay the importance of this, this is not a tick box exercise, this is corporate management developing their understanding of issues impacting First Nations workers and hearing successful strategies on how to strengthen relationships and building communities.
Hosted at the spectacular Howard Smith Wharves, on a rather crisp winters morning (yes it was as cold as Queensland gets), 150 tourism gurus, government officials, NGOs and a rabble of QTIC staff gathered to listen, learn and celebrate.
We kicked off with a welcome from Cameron Costello, Deputy Chair of the QTIC Board and CEO of Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation. Although he meandered slightly off track, he was still deadly (that’s deadly as in amazing – as strange as it may seem – he was real deadly), his inspirational words led to highlighting that QTIC is leading Australia in regards to its focus on Indigenous tourism development stating “we are on the cusp of something amazing”….you know what…..we really are!
Following on from Cameron’s pep talk, we moved to a more sombre keynote address by Tony McAvoy, SC. Tony spoke to this years’ theme of Voice. Treaty. Truth – or in his case Truth, Treaty, Voice. Tony has an incredible background in Native Title, Coronial Inquests and Royal Commissions. A man of his standing has a lot to say and he truly captivated the room – there was no checking emails and even the delicious breakfast sat untouched as he spoke. His unemotional approach to his speech explored questions and the potential answers. So many times we are presented with challenges and troubles but no way of addressing them. Not him. The need for a truth commission and truth telling, the exploration of opportunity for museums on Country, discussion around the statement of the heart, all had the audience contemplating how in their corporate, and personal life, they can move this agenda forward. That was our aim.
Next up, and for a change of pace, we introduced to you The Monsta. I assume this is because he is elventeen feet tall – but I am not expert. He holds 5 NFL premiership rings (including a superbowl ring) and most importantly, he made my boy look like a pre-schooler. Jesse is our future. He holds strong cultural ties to his land. He is articulate. He is a role-model and an inspiration to millions around the world. Just to top it all off he’s just plain deadly (you’re getting the hang of this now). Jesse is embarking on a project One-of-One highlighting the plethora of opportunities open to young Indigenous Australians. Check him out online and give him a hand!!
Whilst NAIDOC week is a great initiative to get the conversation started, to join together, to learn…it doesn’t just have to stop here. Read a book, talk to someone, do some research, start the conversation in your organisation, with your friends, with your family or just go and enjoy one of the fantastic Indigenous experiences that we have here in Queensland. This door has cracked open, time to barge through and wedge it open!