Indigenous Business Month 2020 award winners keeping the sector strong
Annual Indigenous Business Month events have concluded for the sixth year, culminating in a virtual awards presentation.
The 2020 Indigenous Business Month theme Invigorate, Build, maintain to keep our sector strong focused on sharing the personal stories of opportunity and challenges, to encourage, motivate and sustain the Indigenous business sector in the face of COVID-19.
The Indigenous Business Month Awards showcase the outstanding achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses acknowledging businesses that are finding new and innovative ways to build and maintain their businesses.
Co-Founder of Indigenous Business Month and award judge Michelle Evans said the field of applicants was high, with judges inspired by the breadth of Indigenous business success and innovation.
“We are pleased to have received a record number of applications this year – a reflection that many of our Indigenous business owners and leaders are working hard to invigorate, build or maintain business, despite the many challenges faced,” said Michelle. “Applicants were from across the country, representing diverse and varied fields, from technology, through to education and sharing of cultural knowledge, business and law. Across all applications was a desire to support each other, to work with communities or sectors to grow opportunities for Indigenous business owners – the heart of what Indigenous Business Month means.”
Winner of the I2I award, Supply Aus have provided urgent supplies throughout the COVID-19 period, incorporating Indigenous business opportunities throughout their supply chain.
“Supply Aus has supplied more than $1.2m to Indigenous businesses in the last 12 months including the supply of the urgent PPE Aboriginal Medical services and handmade face masks from Biripi Land Council. We are constantly involved in mentoring and coaching with other Indigenous businesses, to help grow our sector and opportunities, especially for youth,” said Shawn, Melbourne based business Supply Australia.
Winner of the Ingenuity award, Deaf Services Australia provide visual information for Aboriginal children with hearing impairment to expand their mind and grow.
“We produce Auslan format Aboriginal stories for Aboriginal people, mainly children but they can be viewed by anyone and at any age. It’s important we are sharing our stories, to engage hearing impaired in culture while also developing literacy skills as well. It also helps benefit the child’s families as they learn Auslan and understand they need to communicate visually with their child,” said Joanna Agius of Deaf Services Australia based in New South Wales.
Winner of the Indigenous Digital Inventiveness award Towcha Technology is most proud of the work the tech company has been doing with remote Indigenous communities.
“We’ve worked with AMRRIC (Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities) to develop an app to help with on the ground disease identification and treatment, incorporating local maps and council data. We’re proud to be a part of this project – a celebration of the intersection between cultural creativity, business nous and technology,” said Alan, Director of Melbourne based Towcha Technology.
PwC MURRA Boost initiative winner, GWS Engineering and Construction of Minto NSW will receive $30,000 in kind support from PwC team to help strengthen their business practices and build capacity for future growth. The family owned business provides equipment and transportation to the construction and engineering industries.
Indigenous Business Month runs from October 1 to October 31, supported by 33 Creative, MURRA Indigenous Business Master Class Program, Iscariot Media and PwC.