This year, one of our Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging initiatives at our office in Australia is to include a statement called an “Acknowledgement of Country” at the start of our team meetings. This statement acknowledges the original and ongoing Indigenous custodians of the land (the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people) and their long and continuing relationship with their country that we now call Australia. An acknowledgement can be made by anybody, Indigenous or non-Indigenous, and by including this at the start of our meetings, we are showing respect, promoting awareness and highlighting the unique position of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australian culture and history.
Acknowledgement of Country
We would like to acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of this land we meet on; in Sydney, the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation. In Melbourne, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. In Adelaide, the Kaurna people, and in Brisbane, the Turrbul people.
We pay respect to their elders both past and present, their ongoing knowledge, resilience, and struggles as the first peoples of this land we now call Australia, and thank them for having us on their country.
With help from our networks outside of Instructure, we personalised our Acknowledgement of Country to include recognition of Indigenous People from all the major Australian cities where we have team members: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Our current practice is to nominate a person from the office to read the statement at the start of our All Hands Meetings. Including an Acknowledgement of Country is now becoming common practice across Australia before many official and nonofficial events, including government-run meetings, sporting events and concerts.
This week, we are celebrating NAIDOC Week, which celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. We’ll be sharing information about famous Indigenous Australians throughout the week.
Our mission is to ensure all team members feel accepted and respected, as well as celebrated for their diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives. By including practices like an Acknowledgment of Country and celebrating NAIDOC Week, we hope to not only raise awareness of our diversity, but also welcome a sense of inclusion and belonging.
APAC Diversity, Inclusion, & Belonging Committee:
Ramzy Alamudi, Chanty Elliott, Vio Favetta, Avi Hanner, Michael Hosking, Manda Kosmas, Candice Lim and Jared Ward.