Photo Credit: South Australian Cricket Association
The South Australian Cricket Association has proudly launched its first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
The RAP document not only highlights the strong history and involvement Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have played in South Australian cricket, but also gives SACA the opportunity to listen, learn and grow our engagement as we continue to make cricket a sport for all.
The RAP includes 85 action items that SACA will aim to achieve within a two-year period, with a clear focus on:
– improving, maintaining and developing mutually beneficial relationships
– showing respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and culture
– providing opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to participate, volunteer, supply and work in South Australian cricket.
Read the entire RAP document here.
On January 20, 2023, the RAP was launched with an all-staff breakfast, while externally it was launched during the BBL First Nations Round, where the RAP working group, SACA board and stakeholders were invited to a function during the Strikers v Scorchers game.
Tanya McGregor, Director, Aboriginal Health – SA Department for Health and Wellbeing and SACA RAP working group member, said SACA’s RAP is about being inclusive as a sport.
“The RAP means us as cricket being a better corporate partner to the community and doing what we know is best to service and to foster our First Nations relationships,” Ms McGregor said.
“I want kids to know that Aboriginal history and culture is something that is part of the game of cricket and that it is a sport for all.
“This is the start of the next phase for SACA to keep growing in our RAP, but also to staying committed beyond the Reconciliation Rounds, beyond NAIDOC Week so we see more Aboriginal people in cricket as a credible sport that they can play, participate and enjoy in summer.”
Shane Bernhardt, SACA’s General Manager, Community Cricket said the RAP provides a clear direction for an ‘all of SACA’ commitment to reconciliation.
“I think the importance of SACA’s RAP is two-fold – firstly, it is SACA’s formal statement to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities regarding SACA’s commitment to the reconciliation journey,” Mr Bernhardt said.
“Secondly, our RAP documents the great work that SACA has already done in providing welcoming cricket opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to engage in cricket and will ensure that SACA continually embraces opportunities for increased engagement.
“What I think will be the most important outcome is successfully embedding a culture of positively promoting opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to engage in our sport – whether that be through employment, volunteering or playing.”
So far this season, SACA staff have already delivered our Woolworths Cricket Blast program to 767 children from an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background, who all formally registered to take part, compared to 570 kids in total over the past three seasons, a fact Mr Bernhardt is quite proud of.
He also called out the Adelaide Strikers’ leadership in in being the first BBL and WBBL team to wear an Indigenous designed shirt in the first matches to be played in the Northern Territory, along with the awarding of the Jason Gillespie Trophy and Faith Thomas Trophy annually.
Mr Bernhardt also reflected on many ‘less seen’ initiatives that SACA delivers, including the production of a Welcome to Country video featuring Uncle Moogy, their local Premier and Community cricket reconciliation rounds, their annual Aboriginal Cricket Carnival, their Junior Aboriginal Academy and their teams that compete in the National Indigenous Cricket Championships – the SA Boomerangs and the SA Desert Peas.
This RAP document wouldn’t have been possible without the help of the cricket community, SACA staff and board and most importantly, our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander advisors, stakeholders and cricketers, as their guidance and support will allow us to continue to play our role in Reconciliation.
A big thank you must go to our RAP working group member and artist, Steven Warrior, for their contribution to this work and document.