To honour and celebrate National Reconciliation Week (27 May – 3 June), the Y NSW has taken an important step forward in its journey with the development of a Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
A ‘Reflect’ RAP is a type of RAP in Reconciliation Australia’s RAP Framework, which provides organisations with a structured approach to advance Reconciliation. The Y is working on its Reflect RAP with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owned consultancy Two Point Co., in preparation to submit the plan to Reconciliation Australia.
“Everyone at the Y will be a part of this important journey as the organisation develops a deeper understanding of First Nations people and their rich cultures across the communities in which we operate,” Y NSW Chief Executive Officer, Susannah Le Bron said.
“National Reconciliation Week is an important moment for us to reflect – to ‘be brave, make change’ and embrace our commitment to Reconciliation.
“We are engaging our teams across New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory in the next phase of our journey to Reconciliation and our Reflect RAP will outline this commitment to meaningfully continue on our path,” Ms Le Bron said.
“I firmly believe that the Y NSW is in a unique and privileged position to make a positive contribution to Reconciliation because our belief is centered on the power of inspired young people, and our far-reaching and diverse connections in more than 40 communities across NSW and the ACT means we can walk in partnership with First Nations people towards Reconciliation.”
Each year, more than two million people visit the Y’s fitness and aquatic centres in NSW and the ACT, and more than 10,000 children attend a Y Outside School Hours Care centre.
The organisation’s Reflection RAP will define the vision and commitments of the Y NSW and specifically identify the challenges and inequity facing Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander young people in Australia.
“We will listen to the voice of young First Nations people and ensure we develop our RAP with a focus on supporting them to lead the development of solutions, programs and initiatives that have a positive impact on their lives and their communities,” Ms Le Bron said.
“Our RAP will celebrate First Nations culture, spirituality, knowledge, and connection to country.”
A RAP Roadmap has been established in consultation with Two Point Co. and endorsed by the Y NSW Board and People & Culture Committee in October 2021. In recent years, the Y NSW has embedded key initiatives and programs in the development of programming and services across the organisation, including:
• Yarning Circles in Youth and Community and Children’s services programs.
• Establishing an Aboriginal Affairs Committee as part of the Y’s Youth Parliament program and seeing a First Nations Youth Premier elected in 2019.
• The creation and implementation of Cultural Programs at Camp Yarramundi.
• National Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week activities promoted across Y Children’s Services centres.
To date, the Y NSW’s Reflect RAP process has achieved the following milestones:
• Establishing the vision for the Y’s RAP through ‘Why’ Workshops.
• Exploring opportunities to attract and support Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Talent through ‘What’ Workshops.
• Establishing a Reconciliation Action Plan Working Group internally.
“We are deeply committed to this journey and look forward to launching our Reflect RAP later this year,” Ms Le Bron said.
“National Reconciliation Week is a great opportunity to encourage and empower everyone to learn more about our First Nations people, and to feel they can contribute meaningfully Reconciliation.”
The theme of #NationalReconciliationWeek from 27 May 2022 is ‘Be Brave, Make Change’.