National Sorry Day

Written by Schiavello

A true connection was formed between Schiavello and College of Event Management over 4 years ago through the shaping of a training space in Melbourne. This space would play an integral role in facilitating the hands on learning of aspiring event management students, using Schiavello’s agile and malleable system, Climate.

At the end of College of Event Management’s lease, a powerful discussion began around reuse, repurposing and recycling existing product. Instead of sending furniture, designed and manufactured in Australia, to landfill, Schiavello encouraged the conversation to facilitate a donation to an Indigenous Community or supporting organisation. College of Event Management were delighted to collaborate with Schiavello and it came quite apparent that as National Sorry Day approached, that Connecting Home, a service for the Stolen Generations, was an organisation that we collectively wanted to donate to. With a minor gesture donating a physical asset, it was apparent that aligning awareness with that the collectively, the was a greater contribution we could make, and a more powerful message.

An emotional and powerful discussion was held on National Sorry Day on Tuesday the 26th of May. Bringing together participants; Lisa Zammit, CEO at Connecting Home, a service for the Stolen Generations, Aunty Merren, an Elder and survivor of the Stolen Generation, Boris Kelly, Co-Founder & Managing Director of College of Event Management, Kyle Vander Kuyp, Indigenous Engagement Manager at Schiavello Ganbu and Daniel Grilli, Global Workplace Services National Manager I VECOS Brand Manager at Schiavello Group.

National Sorry Day discussion highlights.

To all participants, and to all Indigenous Peoples, the 13th February 2008, Former PM Kevin Rudd, delivered a speech which is a milestone etched in our History. It was a moment of acknowledgement and relief, that these atrocities were being acknowledged by Parliament.

Our contribution was to ensure that we remember and commemorate the mistreatment, pain, suffering and ongoing generational trauma as a result of the forcible removal of up to 50,000 children from their families during the first 75 years of Federation. Aunty Merren’s story, is unique, special, and the paradigm of why “Sorry Day” was so important for our country and how important organisations like Connecting Home are. They are instrumental in ensuring that there is support for those survivors to ensure that health, housing and education are paramount for our Indigenous Peoples.

In addition to discussing the key work Schiavello Ganbu are doing through a best practice apprenticeship program, focusing on Relationship, Respect and Opportunities, Boris Kelly’s unique contribution in May 1998, co-producing the first Sorry Day concert rally at the Sydney Opera House and being a member of Australians for Native Title, the group that launched the Sorry Book campaign, highlighted how far have we come. Kyle Vander Kuyp summed up our progression perfectly “Saying sorry takes a lot of pride for anyone to do, but next comes the healing. We now have Reconciliation Week, NAIDOC, National Sorry Day along with the celebration of Indigenous people in sport and music”.

Schiavello, College of Event Management and Connecting Home, acknowledge that Indigenous culture, is the oldest continuous culture in the world that should be protected, and celebrated to ensure that our Indigenous Peoples thrive.

Through acknowledgement and awareness, the healing will continue and ensure that intergenerational trauma doesn’t extend to survivors, families and communities through generations.

Schiavello would like to encourage those wanting to learn more about the Stolen Generations and those wanting to reach out for support to reference the following links:

Schiavello Ganbu would also like to encourage those industry partners through the power of Property, to help Schiavello Ganbu increase our Indigenous Participation Plan (IPP) to ensure our Indigenous Peoples thrive. You can view our IPP here:

We invite you to view the full discussion here: