INTHEBLACK July 2021 - Flipbook - Page 18
// T I M E S T H R E E
COMPILED BY SUSAN MULDOWNEY
MEAN TO YOU?
The theme for this year's NAIDOC week is "heal country!". We
ask three indigenous accountants about the role finance
professionals can and should play in healing country.
J E M M A A H M A N N AS A
A C C O U N TA N T, G R I F F I N H A N C O C K & M O F F I T T
A C C O U N TA N T S
“Heal Country, Heal our Nation” is a call for everyone to
learn and embrace First Nations’ cultural knowledge,
management and protection of our lands, waterways and
sacred sites from exploitation and destruction. Healing
country from past deeds will help strengthen our spiritual
connection to the land. It also signifies the importance of
resolving Indigenous issues and “Closing the Gap”.
I strongly believe we need more businesses and leaders
to take the initiative to heal, recognise and protect First
Nations’ rich cultural heritage. Indigenous accountants
have a responsibility to take a proactive, educational
approach in the movement to healing social, economic and
financial barriers, and our Indigenous communities are
seeking collaborative reform.
As Indigenous accountants and finance professionals, we
have the ability to assist Indigenous organisations, businesses
and people to build compliance capacity, incorporate
successful governance, and create ongoing sustainability
and profitability. Our role is to educate, assist and promote
businesses and organisations within communities, so they
have the ability to make informed decisions, increase
wealth and widen opportunities to ignite healing of country.
Pro bono work in small communities can also assist
Indigenous Australians with the necessary education and
financial resources to make a positive contribution to our
Unfortunately, where First Nations peoples didn’t have
the opportunity to complete higher education, there have
been cases where trusted non-Indigenous professionals
abused their positions over Indigenous-run organisations.
Incidences like these indicate that as the number of
Indigenous-owned businesses increases, so too should the
representation of Indigenous accountants and other
professionals. The challenge is expanding the image of
professions like accounting in Indigenous communities to
emphasise the opportunities and support that higher
education degrees can provide.
Our role is to educate, assist and promote businesses
and organisations within communites, so they have the
ability to make informed decisions, increase wealth and
widen opportunities to ignite healing of country.
18 ITB July 2021