Our vision for reconciliation
To be culturally responsible and committed to social justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. We will be unified, positive and healthy.
As part of the UnitingCare family, our reconciliation journey is guided by the core values of:
- Self-determination: It is essential for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples to decide how best to move into the future.
- Relationships: Healthy relationships are central to building co-operative partnerships based on trust and respect.
- Equality: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples should be heard and influential within the workplace.
- Respect: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples are Australia’s First Nation Peoples. To have this reality acknowledged and accepted is at the heart of respect.
Read UnitingCare’s latest Reconciliation Action Plan here.
Engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
At the Wesley Hospital, we:
- Employ Indigenous Workforce Advisors, who provide advice and links to local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
- Ensure an acknowledgement of country takes place at informal and small events such as meetings. At larger events, such as the opening of a new hospital or service, local Elders are invited to perform a Welcome to Country ceremony.
- Hold events during National Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week to strengthen relationships with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
- Provide cultural awareness training for staff.
Life in all its fullness artwork
In 2020, South Sea Islander and Butchulla artist and designer Tarni O’Shea was commissioned to create an artwork (pictured above) to celebrate the launch of UnitingCare’s Reconciliation Action Plan.
UnitingCare’s reconciliation story is embedded on a foundation layer acknowledging more than 65,000 years of culture that have guided us here today. The central element represents rejuvenation of the land through fire, constructive conversations, and creating an environment of learning and healing. It evolves to reinvigorate the environment, just as UnitingCare adapts to support and guide people through personalised care. This only happens when equality, respect, compassion and self-determination are present. Nurturing the growth of this environment are UnitingCare business functions. These represent the vital role UnitingCare and all parts of the organisation play in sustaining the vitality of the environment. Every element contributes to the health of the environment, helping to share knowledge and build relationships.
Freshwater and saltwater flows around this, connecting UnitingCare to people far and wide. Throughout, the centre is radiant and flourishing, representing the growth and opportunities that come with being connected and empowered. When all these elements work together, a nurtured spirit ignites and thrives. With ongoing care, the environment grows stronger, empowering UnitingCare to let its spirit soar.