Team members from some of Perth’s most prominent advertising agencies came together at Rare earlier this month for an intimate Yarning Circle with Professor Shane Hearn – a respected First Nations leader, speaker and academic who advises organisations on Indigenous engagement in his role as Founder of CultureLink.Consultancy.
A proud Noongar man who hails from WA but now resides in SA, Hearn’s insights on Aboriginal culture and communication have long shaped campaigns, research programs and the ways in which Australian businesses connect with First Nations people.
As part of the session hosted by Advertising Council Australia (ACA), Hearn advised ACA members on how to make their agencies more inclusive and how they can provide better support for Indigenous people looking to secure jobs in WA’s ad industry.
“Sitting down with someone as experienced and credentialled as Professor Hearn was a real coup for ACA’s Perth members and enabled us to speak openly about a topic close to our hearts but one we sometimes feel ill-equipped to have, ” said ACA WA State Manager Melissa Vella.
“Representatives from Wunderman Thompson, Gatecrasher, 303 MullenLowe, Trilogy, Rare and Marketforce were able to ask questions about the process, challenges and opportunities involved in broadening their engagement with the Indigenous community, and how to go about developing their own Reconciliation Action Plan.
“As a national industry body, ACA is proud to be able to connect its members with respected experts like Professor Hearn,” she said.
ACA launched its own Reconciliation Action Plan in April 2021 that aims to equip members with the skills to appropriately engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and develop their own RAP that is consistent with government initiatives.
Professor Hearn is a member of ACA’s RAP Committee which works with ACA to develop resources that support and guide members on issues related to Indigenous diversity and inclusion.
For more information about ACA’s RAP resources and other member benefits, local agencies can contact ACA WA State Manager Melissa Vella on e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.