Be Brave. Make Change. Reconciliation Week

Reconciliation Week

Be Brave. Make Change

Today marks the start of National Reconciliation Week. The 2022 theme — Be Brave. Make Change — challenges us to tackle the unfinished business of Reconciliation, for the benefit of all Australians.

At Bates Smart, we are at the beginning of our Reconciliation journey. Our Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan has been endorsed by Reconciliation Australia, and we have joined their RING, the RAP Industry Network Group for architecture and design firms.

Our Reflect RAP has arisen from the care and curiosity of people across our practice, each pointing toward a desire to do more to understand and meaningfully engage First Nations cultures. From here on in, we hope to actively make efforts to learn about, acknowledge and engage Aboriginal and Torres Strait cultures in the everyday life of our studios and projects.

Whilst the Reflect RAP provides us a clear framework to help translate goodwill into real change, we acknowledge that this needs to be inherent in every part of our work and culture – not just within our own studio walls, but embedded in our projects. We must broaden our engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, places and peoples so that we can continue to make our cities and regions great places to live.

We are working with Designing with Country specialists on projects across Australia, and in varying sectors and scales. This involves working side-by-side with consultants, learning from their expertise and integrating their knowledge so that our projects can better connect to Country.

In our own studios, we are beginning to have open conversations and workshops about Designing with Country. Last Friday, Bates Smart was joined by Yatu Widders Hunt, from Cox Inall Ridgeway, who spoke on the importance of a friendship and partnership approach to co-design.

Bates Smart was joined by Yatu Widders Hunt from Cox Inall Ridgeway


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