Amicus is proud to be operating on Traditional Gadigal Country of Sydney, Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Country of Melbourne, and Yuggera & Turrbal Country of Brisbane. Amicus acknowledges ancestors and elders, past, present and emerging and is committed to bridging the gap through employment opportunities and building relationships.
Early in 2022, Amicus began a journey to make meaningful progress towards reconciliation.
Our mission being to positively impact people’s lives, we have created a unique Amicus program of action founded on strong relationships that will generate meaningful results.
We launched our First Nations Action Program in 2022 at our National Summit on Wurundjeri Country and introduced the Amicus team to Abe Archibald, a proud Guyra man and co-founder of Traditional Projects.
Amicus and Traditional Projects have recently commenced a working partnership. This partnership, developed through shared ambitions and values, is the cornerstone element of our program and aims to provide mentorship and build capability within the Traditional Projects team.
Traditional Projects is a small First Nations-owned construction and project management firm founded by Abe Archibald and Andrew Anthony in 2020.
Abe shared with us the story behind Traditional Projects.
“Andrew and I met while working for an Indigenous arm of a medium-sized builder delivering Defence projects. During this time, Andrew, who was employed as a Senior Project Manager, was getting a lot of pushback from management for spending resources connecting with the Traditional Owners and engaging with Indigenous subcontractors and suppliers.
After doing a lot of whinging between ourselves about the way these ‘Black Cladded’ organisations work where the Indigenous owners are not active in the organisation, we decided to open our own construction firm, where I would be at the forefront of the business’ day-to-day operations.
So Traditional Projects was created with a vision to achieve the exact thing the Indigenous Procurement Policy was created for: to stimulate Indigenous entrepreneurship, business and economic development and provide Indigenous Australians with more opportunities to participate in the economy.
Opening during the first lockdown of 2020 was not without its challenges. At 6 months in, we hadn’t won a job, we were feeling disheartened, and our resources were draining. However, by the end of 2020, we won our first job, which created a domino effect, winning a further 6 in a row and being able to hire a third staff member, an Indigenous Site Supervisor. After a big 12 months of back-to-back jobs, Andrew commenced some contract Project Management work with Amicus.
What was expected to be a short-term solution for Traditional Projects while we tendered works turned out to be a great friendship, as Amicus shared our same desire to celebrate First Nations culture and trade with First Nations businesses.
Nearly 2 years into our partnership, Traditional Projects has been lucky to be mentored in systems, operations, and sales under the guidance of the Amicus Leadership group. In turn, we have had the opportunity to take part in the Amicus First Nations Action Program, where we’ve been able to assist with Indigenous engagement, cultural awareness and growing an Indigenous subcontractor/supplier list.
Our long-term goal is to deliver large projects for government to allow us to grow and develop our own team, give opportunities to other Indigenous subcontractors and suppliers and continue to engage with the Traditional Owners in all the areas we work.
With the support and guidance of Amicus, we are quickly seeing this dream become a reality.”
At Amicus, we know that we have much to learn from Abe and from the oldest, continuing civilisation on earth. Through this journey, we hope to build our understanding and contribute to the path of reconciliation, as well as make a positive impact on our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. Our journey is just beginning.
“We have a unique position within the construction industry to provide real economic opportunities to our First Nations partners and suppliers through our networks, projects, and supply chain. Our First Nations Action Program is our tangible commitment to reconciliation.”
Simon Coles, Amicus Group Managing Director
Interested to learn more about the Amicus First Nations Action Program? Visit our dedicated website page or click here to reach out if you want your next workplace project to make a positive social impact or if you are a supplier or tradesperson and would like to join our network of First Nations partners.