Like many Australian’s we have been watching the Black Lives Matters movement in the US with interest and concern.
It has made us pause for a moment and consider our connection with Indigenous Australians and in what ways we may be complicit in the racism and disadvantaged that they face daily.
As a small business, it is easy to dismiss the idea that we need to address social issues like this. Surely, that’s something for the Telstra’s and Qantas’ to worry about.
However, a small business is made of individuals, and it’s individuals that can help to change a bias embedded in the community. As it has been said on social media many times, silence is a form of racism.
In some ways, the litany of blacked-out images and poignant copy on social media is important, although some of it can feel a little bit like virtue signalling and advertising disguised as action.
Instead, we have decided to look internally and consider how we can adapt what we do in a way that might bring a benefit to the Indigenous community, particularly within regional Victoria. After all, it is Indigenous land that we live and work on.
We are therefore committing to doing a better job at highlighting and promoting significant Indigenous people, business, locations and stories throughout regional Victoria.
We hope that by highlighting the incredible things Indigenous members of our community achieve and the richness of their history, we might inspire others to see them in a new light, creating new opportunities and restoring some balance to an imbalance that has been there since colonisation.
In addition to the stories, we will also seek Indigenous experiences and goods to be added to OHO Experiences and OHO Markets and will provide favourable business terms in order to assist them to reach a new audience and thrive.
If you know of any Indigenous stories, experiences or goods that you think we should follow up, then we would love to hear about them. Perhaps it’s a small business owner, artist or organisation doing great work. Or a regional location with an Indigenous history that is often not told.
Please send your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will follow up.