“It’s about walking together”

On April 17th GROW Gippsland and Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation (GLaWAC) provided Cultural Awareness and Cultural Safety & Inclusion training in Kalimna West to 15 attendees.

The day began with a traditional smoking ceremony, welcoming guests to the land on which they were to learn the history of the Gunaikurnai people. Presented by Gratten Mullet, participants familiarised themselves with the Aboriginal history of Gippsland and the work being done by GLaWAC in the Cultural Heritage space as traditional owners of the land. This includes working with government and businesses on Gippsland projects, ensuring proceedings take place in a culturally safe way.

GROW Gippsland’s Liz Allen provided some real-life examples during her Cultural Safety presentation, encouraging the discussion around recruitment, employment and retention of Aboriginal people. Building upon Liz’s presentation, Lydna Capes from Gippsland and East Gippsland Aboriginal Co-operative (GEGAC), presented on her experience of employing Aboriginal people; ‘diversity is about difference – relate yourself to the person and take into account everyone’s differences’ when looking to employ inclusively.

Building relationships, communication and understanding were the take away messages from the day; create the courage to have a go, move beyond just having a chat and keep the conversation going.

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