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COX Proudly Supports and Celebrates Reconciliation Week

When we talk about National Reconciliation Week it is important to keep in mind what reconciliation means.

Reconciliation – a situation in which two people or groups of people become friendly again after they have argued the process of making two opposite beliefs, ideas, or situations agree.

Reconciliation is a national effort; it is a journey for all Australians. At the heart of this journey is relationships, reconciliation is about understanding and connection between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The History of National Reconciliation Week

The dates for National Reconciliation Week are the same each year; 27 May to 3 June. These dates commemorate two significant milestones in Australia’s reconciliation journey— the successful 1967 referendum, and the High Court Mabo decision respectively.

National Reconciliation Week Now

Today, National Reconciliation Week is celebrated in workplaces, schools, community organisations and groups, and by individuals Australia-wide.

It is also important to note the day before the start of Reconciliation Week, 26 May, is National Sorry Day, first held in Sydney in 1998 and now commemorated annually to honour the Stolen Generations.

About the theme
The National Reconciliation Week theme for 2024, Now More Than Ever, is a reminder to all of us that no matter what, the fight for justice and the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will —and must —continue.

Below: JCU Central Plaza

Reconciliation week at COX

We hope to reach the day when a ‘Reconciliation Week’ becomes unnecessary, where we stand as citizens reconciled to the truth of a divisive past and have worked together to achieve a fair and equitable society. Until then, this week is a powerful symbol of how far we may have come on this journey, but it is also a timely reminder of how far we still must go. As a practice, we’ve made good progress with our RAP and have committed to make further strides in this area.

We reflect on reconciliation and how meaningful change takes time. We commit to creating lasting relationships that both enrich our knowledge of place and people, and most importantly help to grow and positively impact on the Traditional Custodian communities we work with. Strong relationships will help cultivate who we are, the design process we partake in, and our design outcomes so that our projects have more engagement with Country and Community.

COX Managing Partner, Ian Smith

At the heart of COX is an ethos deeply rooted in our values – we are ‘by the many, for the many. We align our commitment to reconciliation with our vision for a nation that embodies diversity and leads with empathy. Through respect, reciprocity, and listening we can evolve a built environment that is wholly Australia – drawing on an understanding of place.

Above: Fortitude Valley State Secondary College 

COX’s Innovate RAP 

This week also marks the exciting unveiling of our Innovate RAP. This new phase represents a dynamic progression from our Reflect RAP, empowering us to delve deeper into our sphere of influence and continue to work towards reconciliation.

The RAP will be presented nationally on Friday 31 May by Kyran Dixon, Karen Clutson, Ashley Beckett and Emma Fitt.

Indigenous Engagement Lead, Kyran Dixon

Our Innovate RAP seeks to embrace a proactive approach to problem-solving. Through this plan, we reaffirm our commitment to investing in relationships with First Nations peoples and creating physically and socially safe and respectful spaces.

Above: Edithvale Station

Across our studios

Throughout the week, our studios are hosting a series of events to celebrate locally.

  • Adelaide’s Studio is hosting an Aboriginal Artefacts Session with Indigenous storyteller, educator and guide, Trent Hill
  • Melbourne’s Studio is hosting a Talk from First Nations Fashion Studio Ngali
  • Brisbane’s Studio will be joined by Queensland Museum Dr Bianca Beatson to discuss the recent project Keeping Place – Repatriation First Nations Artefacts
  • Canberra will host the official RAP Launch
  • Perth’s Studio will be hosting the ‘Now More than Ever – Walk for Reconciliation’ where participants will walk alongside the bilya (river) through the park and ending in solidarity at the Supreme Court Gardens with guest performers
  • Sydney’s Studio will attend a special performance of Ngapa William Cooper at City Recital Hall

Edithvale, Chelsea and Bonbeach Stations

Napean Highway, Edithvale to Bonbeach

Fortitude Valley State Secondary College