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Page Background

The subtext of Jawun is that it creates a

group of people who become personally

quite committed to Indigenous issues

in Australia. So when we think about

the broader issues of constitutional

recognition and reconciliation, there are

now hundreds and hundreds of people

who have been through Jawun who

are foot soldiers for the cause.



A ‘ripple effect’ is defined as a spreading effect

or series of consequences, usually unintentional,

caused by a single action or event.



years from its beginnings in Cape York, Jawun is

beginning to see a ripple effect occurring through

an alumni of more than 1,900 secondees and

500 leaders in Jawun’s partner organisations who

have visited the communities in which it operates.

As these numbers increase, it follows that the ripple

effect of Jawun partnerships will reach more and

more people in Australia.

The influence of the Jawun program often starts

with an individual experience (the stone dropped

in the pond) in the form of a secondment or

Executive Visit (see Figure 4, page 8).

This experience tends to creates ‘


’ or a


of changes within the individual

that usually occur

in the following order:


Attitudinal changes

as a result of increased

awareness and empathy.


Behavioural changes

such as a deeper

connection to community, greater interest in

Indigenous affairs, more inclusive behaviours

in the workplace.


Taking action

in the form of volunteer work,

formal or informal advocacy on Indigenous

issues, board positions or related roles in

Indigenous organisations.

By definition, a ripple effect often spreads to

areas or populations far removed from its origins

(see Figure 8). Similarly, the Jawun program goes

beyond an individual experience. People who have

participated in secondments or Executive Visits

commonly go on to influence their social circles—

usually starting with family and friends and then

moving to wider networks—creating the following

ripple effect in broader society


Family, friends and wider social circles are


when secondment or Executive Visit

experiences and new insights are shared, and when

perceptions are challenged through conversations.

Professional circles are influenced

when alumni

and executives model inclusive behaviour in the

West Kimberley Executive Visit group, 2015.

Photo: David Rennie