AFL SportsReady is a small organisation with a big impact and is fortunate to have Natakka Alberts as their Program Lead for First Nations Programs. Natakka, a proud Ghungalu and Yiman woman from Mackay, brings her passion and dedication to the role.
She plays a pivotal role in the delivery of the Warumilang Program.
“My role involves leading and supporting the program delivery of our amazing First Nations Program called Warumilang. Seeing the incredible work AFL SportsReady delivers through its First Nations Program, is something I definitely wanted to be a part of and was the chance for me to lead my own voice for my family and community.”
Collaborating with various levels and business areas within the organisation to establish stronger connections with First Nations communities. Currently, she is focused on launching AFL SportsReady’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). Working closely with senior leaders to achieve their reconciliation goals and foster a more united team.
“My involvement is essentially leading the RAP project from publication, to launch and monitoring our achievements to ensure we’re delivering on what we’ve listed in the RAP. A Reconciliation Action Plan is so important as it’s a tangible document to turn good intentions into measurable actions that support First Nations Peoples.”
“In our particular case, it’s supporting First Nations young people through education and employment and taking our organisation on a journey towards achieving true reconciliation.”
A typical week in Natakka’s life involves engaging with internal stakeholders, meeting with partners, planning projects, and providing advice across various business areas. Additionally, she dedicates significant time to community engagement, attending events and building relationships with community.
“Since starting in my role, I’ve been fortunate to travel to Hobart (pictured above) and Melbourne to meet with key stakeholders and young people themselves to hear first-hand the barriers they face within education and employment.”
Beyond her work with AFL SportsReady, Natakka is also involved in important community projects. She has been an active participant in the Uluru Youth Dialogue. Advocating for the Uluru Statement and a Voice to Parliament. Through her volunteer work and participation in events, she raises awareness about these critical issues and strives to create a more united and brighter future for future generations.
“Since 2019, I’ve been involved in the Uluru Youth Dialogue which has been a huge honour. Meeting and collaborating with like-minded First Nations young people to advocate and show support for the Uluru Statement has been an amazing experience.”
“I’ve been fortunate to attend many events to raise awareness about the Uluru Statement and the Voice to Parliament. Our Elders of this country have paved the way for us young people, and it’s time for us to speak up to create a more united and brighter future for our own children and future generations.”
Working at AFL SportsReady, Natakka cherishes the organisation’s culture and the opportunity it provides to develop the future careers of First Nations young people. Despite being a small organisation, AFL SportsReady has a profound impact, positively influencing the lives of many.
“The culture of AFL SportsReady is something I love, we’re a small organisation with huge impact! The opportunity to deliver and work on programs that develop the future careers of First Nations young people is amazing.”
“I’m a huge advocate for creating safe spaces and culturally safe environments. So it’s amazing to be able to work on our cultural capability strategy to find ways to educate and enable staff to learn about First Nations history, culture and achievements.”
National Reconciliation Week holds great significance for Natakka. It is a time to acknowledge past injustices faced by First Nations Peoples and to emphasise the importance of reconciliation. She believes that everyone has a role to play in this process.
“It is a special week for me as it’s acknowledging the past injustices within this country to First Nations Peoples and shines a spotlight on why reconciliation is so important. It’s amazing to see more people get involved in this week, to genuinely take the time to learn about our history, culture and Aboriginal way of life. We all have a role to play when it comes to reconciliation.”
“Within our First Nations, Warumilang Program we offer a range of incredible opportunities for young people to kick-start their career. I was amazed at all the opportunities we provide and wish I had those growing up.”