5 July 2023

NAIDOC Week 2023: ICN Vic speaks with Jebb Hutchison, Managing Director at TVN On-Country

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TVN On-Country team by Lake Hume – Manifeasto Photography
TVN On-Country team by Lake Hume – Manifeasto Photography

This NAIDOC Week, ICN Vic is proud to share a series of conversations with leading Indigenous and Aboriginal organisations. We discuss the NAIDOC Week 2023 theme ‘For Our Elders’, the importance of engagement with First Nations suppliers and businesses, and much more.

Jebb Hutchison is a proud Wiradjuri man from Hillston, New South Wales. He is the Managing Director of TVN On-Country, an Indigenous owned commercial construction and procurement company based in Wodonga, on the border of Victoria and New South Wales.

The theme ‘For Our Elders’ recognises that across every generation, Elders have played and continue to play an important role and hold a prominent place in communities and families. As a proud Aboriginal man, Jebb’s connection to Elders is central to his success.

“This year in particular is really special for me. I look at my own parents and I wouldn’t be doing anything without them, they provided the opportunity. That’s just what Elders have done for Aboriginal people, they provide opportunities,” notes Jebb.

“They’ve guided and advised so many of us around mistakes that may have been made before.”

Jebb encourages younger generations to embrace this year’s theme and continue to recognise and respect the role Elders play in the community.

“For us, as a younger generation, it’s important to listen to our Elders. Because they want to share their knowledge and if we don’t listen, that knowledge can be lost.”

Closing the Gap by working together

Jebb with Uncle Phil Murray – Manifeasto Photography
Jebb with Uncle Phil Murray – Manifeasto Photography

In July 2020, the National Agreement on Closing the Gap (the National Agreement) came into effect upon signature by First Ministers of all Australian governments.

The main objective of the National Agreement is to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and governments to work together to overcome the inequality experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and achieve life outcomes equal to all Australians.

TVN On-Country is committed to closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous employment rates in Australia. Jebb insists that the first step to achieving such outcomes is working together.

“Together we are stronger. That goes for First Nations businesses working together and First Nations businesses working with non-Indigenous originations, together we are stronger. We talk about Closing the Gap all the time, and I think the employment part is the biggest piece of that gap. If you close that, I think it closes most of the other gaps. I encourage everyone to engage with Indigenous people. What they can bring to an organisation is seriously special,” says Jebb.

With close to a quarter of all TVN On-Country staff members identifying as Indigenous, Jebb can see first-hand the impacts social procurement and the importance of connecting with Indigenous businesses.

“It’s about providing opportunities to Indigenous people through employment, which obviously leads to a higher standard of living. That’s probably the biggest piece for myself, as far as connecting with Indigenous businesses through the procurement process. It leads to jobs for Indigenous people,” he says.

Learn more about the National Agreement by visiting www.closingthegap.gov.au/national-agreement.

TVN On-Country and the Munarra Centre for Regional Excellence

TVN On-Country directors Gareth VanNoort, Jebb Hutchison and Jonathon Whelan with Kinaway Regional Business of the Year awards – TVN On-Country
TVN On-Country directors Gareth VanNoort, Jebb Hutchison and Jonathon Whelan with Kinaway Regional Business of the Year awards

Earlier this year, with support from ICN Victoria, TVN On-Country secured and commenced work on the Munarra Centre for Regional Excellence (MCRE) project. The MCRE project represents a once in a generation opportunity to enhance Aboriginal cultural identity, expression, and celebration; grow Aboriginal leadership; improve Aboriginal health; build Aboriginal education; enhance Aboriginal employment options; and move towards equitable social inclusion and reconciliation.

“It’s our largest project to date, it’s a landmark project for us. I’m really proud that we’ve been given the opportunity and we’ve been trusted by the Munarra Limited Group,” says Jebb.

Connect with TVN On-Country on ICN Gateway today: https://gateway.icn.org.au/supplier/view/146894/

 

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