Making ‘Big Dreams’ come true

With almost a third (30 per cent) of all those in Anglicare Victoria’s care identifying as Indigenous, the Buldau Yioohgen (BY) “Big Dreams” Indigenous Leadership Academy has an essential role to play in helping our young people to heal on Country and discover the power of their culture.

As part of their cultural journey, BY helps to connect young people to organisations and potential jobs they may never have considered to be part of their future ambitions. An idea underpinning the program is that ‘you can’t be what you can’t see.’

From across AV’s social support programs, BY welcomes young Indigenous people into culturally immersive experiences and professional development opportunities. The results have been profound, with young people finding Culture and community to be an important grounding influence when their world is in chaos.

Co-led by AV’s Senior Cultural Operations Lead and Elder Aunty Kellie Hunter (Woi Wurrung Wurundjeri) and Program Manager David Law, BY’s vast network of partners provides diverse and exciting experiences for hundreds of our young Indigenous people and families each year. The program also partners closely with regional Indigenous organisations and support services, taking referrals and making connections into communities where required.

“It is important to show how musical theatre can be a viable career path where anyone can see themselves included and valued. Opera Australia is proud of our partnership with Anglicare Victoria’s Buldau Yioohgen program, where they support opportunities for young Indigenous students to engage with the opera art form and with the various career aspects of music theatre.” – Retha Howard, Opera Australia

This year, Tennis Australia flew 16 young people to Darwin, providing them with accommodation for the week-long National Indigenous Tennis Carnival. They also offered over 20 job opportunities to our young people. Tennis Victoria plans to welcome 150 Indigenous people to the 2023 Australian Open to take part in culturally-grounded sporting opportunities during the event. BY participants will also have an opportunity to train as ball kids for the tournament, following on from BY’s Lewis and Rhys who worked throughout the 2022 Open.

“It goes both ways: we take their staff onto Country programs in Tassie or Lake Mungo as volunteers. They get cultural training and work with us, but they also get to sit around the fire, partake in Welcome to Countries, hear stories, and sing music and song lines. These partnerships are deeper than just measuring outcomes because we invest in the immeasurable. That’s how you create a genuine partnership.” – David Law, Program Manager

“Tennis Australia has loved working with Buldau Yioohgen this year to create meaningful opportunities for First Nations people across our major events, our workforce and within communities. Buldau Yioohgen provides immersive learning opportunities for us as much as they do for the young people they are engaging with.” – Kerry Tavrou, Head of Inclusion & Diversity, Tennis Australia

The 2022 Annual report can be found on our website.

To request a hard copy of this report, call us on 1800 809 722.

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