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Shining a Light for Reconciliation Week 2023

Throughout National Reconciliation Week, Port Waratah Coal Services will light up its Carrington Shiploaders in colours inspired by the Aboriginal Flag to mark the importance of reconciliation in Australia and this year’s theme “Be a voice for generations”.


Reconciliation Week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared stories, histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

Since 2018, Port Waratah has illuminated its two shiploaders at its Carrington wharf facility each year to shine a light on one community cause and promote awareness.

This year, against the winter black night sky, one shiploader will shine yellow and the other red to symbolise the colours of the Aboriginal Flag, which represents the Aboriginal people of Australia and their spiritual connection to the land. The black represents the Aboriginal people, the red represents the earth and the colour of ochre and the circle of yellow represents the sun as the constant renewer of life.

Lighting up the shiploaders symbolises an important step in Port Waratah’s journey of listening to and learning from everyone in our community. Internally, Port Waratah has an explicitly committed focus on Diversity and Inclusion.

Port Waratah CEO, Hennie du Plooy, said that the development of Port Waratah’s first Reconciliation Action Plan has been focused on reflection, learning and building relationships with First Nations communities across Worimi and Awabakal countries.

“As part of commencing work on developing a Reconciliation Action Plan, we have provided our leadership with exposure to First Nations culture and learning,” said Mr du Plooy.

“Within Port Waratah, we have been exploring how we as a business can strengthen our relationships with the region’s First Nations people and how we might make a greater contribution to creating equitable and positive outcomes.

“In a significant step for our community partnerships, we have committed to increase the value of our annual investment by $100,000 per year to $850,000, which has enabled us to grow our priority areas to include Partnerships for Reconciliation.

“I am hopeful that this extension of our programme will broaden our potential impact and contribution to the community as a whole.”

The Partnerships for Reconciliation priority area within our Community Investment and Partnership Programme focuses on projects and initiatives that support local contributions to the National Agreement on Closing the Gap socio-economic outcome areas and targets.

Port Waratah’s overarching commitment remains to contribute to the region as an engaged member of the community that hosts us, with the objective to help build a smarter, vibrant and sustainable city for all its people.

The Carrington shiploaders will be lit throughout National Reconciliation Week, 27 May to 3 June and NAIDOC Week 2-9 July.


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