Our commitment to respecting Country

Our Associate Director, Walter Van Der Loo’s reflection on the 2022 AILA Festival of Landscape Architecture and our next steps to take responsibility to further honour Country.

“The power of listening. Last week I went to Magandjin (Brisbane) and listened to courageous First Nations panel members have powerful conversations about Country at the AILA Festival.

I have been moved to take more responsibility for my role in the system and to make change. Following my return to Perth in Whadjuk Noongar Country late last night, this morning I started by first sharing with my 13 year old son some of the stories I heard as I took him to school. I also shared some of what I heard with my work colleagues at our Monday morning huddle.

Even hearing these stories second hand had an immediate impact on those I spoke to. My colleagues and I have already discussed next actions at a whole team work and established an ongoing process of knowledge gaining to develop actions to improve how we practice on Country and give greater agency to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Thank you so much to everyone that made this possible and afforded me the opportunity to begin listening harder.”