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Reconciliation Action Plan

For thousands of years, Tubowgule, the land on which the Opera House stands, has been a place of gathering and belonging. The Gadigal would meet on the tidal island, eat and share stories. The Opera House carries on this legacy by embracing and celebrating the culture of Australia’s First Peoples.  

The Opera House’s Reconciliation Action Plan ["RAP"] commits to a range of actions and initiatives that aim to safeguard these traditions and adapting cultures for future generations. In 2011, the Opera House became the first performing arts organisation in Australia to launch a RAP. The inaugural RAP was developed to turn the Opera House’s commitment into a meaningful strategy for achieving its reconciliation vision. 

Fostering and celebrating a shared sense of belonging for all Australians.
Homeground performers with Aboriginal body paint

Celebrating the values of reconciliation

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Since then, the Opera House has embarked on a number of initiatives through its RAPs to further embed reconciliation values across the full spectrum of what the Opera House offers, from art and experiences to education and employment.

In 2019, the Opera House became the first major Australian arts institution to announce its commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which provide a roadmap to address the world’s most pressing challenges by 2030. This commitment is reflected in our fifth Reconciliation Action Plan (2020-22),  which supports global efforts to promote cultural awareness, equality and opportunity for all, and commits to initiatives that will enable our vision for reconciliation – to foster and celebrate a shared sense of belonging for all Australians.

Our 2020-22 RAP, as well as our 2016-19 RAP and 2017-18 achievements are available at the links below. 

With the Opera House’s 50th anniversary year in 2023, we will be setting a new strategic direction and we want our RAP to be at the heart of what we do next. To bring the development of our next RAP in line with our other social and environmental sustainability strategies through such a pivotal year, we have been granted a 12-month extension of our 2020 – 22 RAP by Reconciliation Australia. The additional time will also allow us to further our commitments, some of which were impacted by the pandemic.

With Reconciliation Australia’s guidance, in the interim period until the new RAP has been endorsed, we continue to be an active RAP program partner: continuing to implement our existing RAP commitments, undertake our reporting requirements and engage closely with Reconciliation Australia to develop a sustainable and meaningful new RAP.

If you’d like to learn more about Reconciliation Australia’s RAP program, you can do so here. They have also developed a Share Our Pride tool to help you start your cultural awareness journey.

Aiesha Saunders, Sydney Opera House intern
Aiesha Saunders, Opera House intern Image: Versus Media

Aiesha Saunders, Intern

"I get a warm feeling when I am walking to the Opera House. It’s such an inspiring place to work. I was regularly involved with activities here in high school, first the Deadly Awards and the Youth Advisory Committee, and then later the Indigenous Work Experience Program. I was really excited to be invited back recently to help facilitate that program."

 

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