Barpa, a year in review – 2017
As the year draws to a close, it’s the perfect opportunity to look back over Barpa’s last 12 months
Overall 2017 was a good year which saw Barpa continue to grow as a company and deliver on its vision to empower Australia’s Indigenous people and businesses.
A summary of key achievements is below;
2017 has seen a noticeable improvement in Barpa’s tender strike-rate, this year we have won 12 projects in 6 states and territories. Our clients include Federal Government Departments and agencies, State Governments and Tier 1 Contractors.
We work in an increasingly competitive environment with the number of competing Indigenous businesses increasing significantly. To remain competitive Barpa has invested significant resources in our capability and Indigenous engagement.
Feedback on our tenders rates our submissions as being of a high quality and providing value for money.
Safety on our jobs remains an absolute priority as well as a strong focus on delivering quality projects successfully, on time and on budget.
A big part of why we do what we do is to increase employment and career opportunities for Indigenous people as this provides significant economic gains to the individuals who move into employment, and their families and communities. Barpa is proud that in 2017 we were able to increase our Indigenous workforce to 21.
In the past 12 months we have welcomed 13 new staff to the Barpa team;
– Derek Hayes: Leading Hand (Vic)
– Todd Councillor: Contracts Administrator (NSW)
– Leila Carrick: Building Co-ordinator (NT)
– Bradley Hutchings: Site Manager (NT)
– Laura Brown: Building Co-ordinator – Grad (Vic)
– Kevin Go-Sam: Foreman (Qld)
– Justin Nuttall: Construction Worker (Qld)
– Russell Wilcox: Construction Worker (Qld)
– Norman Holmes: Construction Worker (WA)
– Tane Lowe: Construction Worker (Qld)
– Adam Dunn: Business Development (Qld)
– Edward Pabai: Construction Worker (Qld)
– Masiur Clermont: Construction Worker (Qld)
We are committed to increasing our Indigenous staff and capability and being an employer of choice. Our staff are attracted to Barpa because:
– They join a company that appreciates and understands their Aboriginality
– They have Aboriginal colleagues
– We have cultural sensitivity
– They are mentored and supported
– We invest in their professional development
Community 2 Day
Barpa Construction Services encourage their employees to undertake volunteer work with charities and community organisations each year. This year Barpa provided staff and materials to the Victorian Aboriginal Communities Services Association Ltd (VACSAL) located in Northcote. Barpa team members spent a day refurbishing VACSAL’s function room/dining area which is used for commercial and Indigenous community functions.
Barpa practices what it preaches and uses Indigenous suppliers where possible. In 2017 we have increased our number of Indigenous suppliers to 14. We are proud to support other Indigenous businesses through purchasing their services and working together to ensure success.
Barpa was a final 3 Finalist in the Certified Supplier of the Year Category at the Supply Nation Connect 2017: Supplier Diversity awards in Sydney. Staff and Directors attended a great event and were proud to see recognition of their hard work.
As an Indigenous company Barpa ensures that it celebrates significant dates and events during the year, as well as attend Indigenous business events around the country.
This year we celebrated and attended;
– Reconciliation week
– Sorry Day
– NAIDOC Week
– Dreamtime at the G
– Supply Nation Connect
– Supply Nation Indigenous Tradeshow series
Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations
The Federation is the peak body for Victorian Traditional Owner organisations, the Majority owners of Barpa. It has seven Traditional Owner Corporations with a combined membership of over 4000 Aboriginal people The year saw the Federation receive a significant dividend from the business which enabled them to amongst other things;
– Employ their first CEO and secretariat
– Increase their capacity to advocate on behalf of Traditional Owners
– Release a new 3 year strategic plan
– Reinvest Resources to Grow Aboriginal Business and launch On Country Heritage and Consulting
– Develop an Aboriginal Sports Sponsorship Program
– Establish an Aboriginal Youth Cultural Strengthening Pilot Project
– Commission an Intangible Heritage Project.
Thank you for your support this year and we look forward to what we can achieve 2018!
The Barpa team wishes you all a safe festive season and a prosperous New Year!
Community 2 Day – VACSAL
Barpa Construction Services encourage their employees to undertake volunteer work with charities and community organisations.
As a multi-disciplinary construction company, our employees’ broad range of skills can assist organisations with building maintenance and repair, small construction jobs such as playground equipment, grounds maintenance, shelving installation, packing and moving, and our employees are available on an individual or team basis, for projects up to two days’ duration.
During October, Barpa staff from our Victorian office spent a day at the Victorian Aboriginal Communities Services Association Ltd (VACSAL) located in Northcote.
VACSAL is a state-wide agency that provides advice to government on a range of community development issues as well as being a major provider of extensive services to the Aboriginal community in both the metropolitan and some regional communities, these services include:
• Bert Williams Koorie Youth program and residential support.
• Aboriginal Best Start Project.
• Gambling Awareness Project.
• Indigenous Men’s Support Programs and more.
Barpa team members spent a day refurbishing VACSAL’s function room/dining area which is used for Commercial and Indigenous community functions.
We’re always on the lookout for new projects we can help with so if you’re looking for some extra hands or expertise to assist with a special project, please contact us!
CSIRO Agricultural Research Station Boorowa
Barpa is proud to announce it has secured a win in regional NSW, being engaged by CSIRO to design and construct the $4.7M Agricultural Research Station located in Boorowa.
Boorowa Agricultural Research Station will be a purpose-built 290 hectare facility designed to help develop Australian farms of the future by testing emerging technologies in crop science, agronomy and farming systems. The site will be fully operational by late 2018.
Located around 100km north of Canberra, Boorowa Agricultural Research Station replaces CSIRO’s Ginninderra Experimental Station, which was established just outside of Canberra in 1958 and had a focus on pasture and animal research. The new facility provides a fresh opportunity to study a broad and integrated range of agricultural sciences.
The Boorowa Agricultural Research Station is being established as a digital farm utilising state of the art equipment and technologies to facilitate the latest in agricultural research. It will include facilities for field days and will be used as a hub for agricultural research by CSIRO and its collaborators in southeastern Australia, and in some cases as a node for
relevant national or international research projects. The building design will incorporate ESD initiatives such as rain water tanks and solar panels, demonstrating CSIRO’s commitment and dedication to reducing its carbon footprint.
National Recognition for Barpa as new Defence projects commence.
Barpa was recently recognised by Supply Nation as a top three finalist for the prestigious Supplier of the Year Award.
Barpa staff and directors attended the conference and exhibited at the Supply Nation Trade show in Sydney during May 2017.
The Connect 2017 event culminated in the Awards presentation at the Gala Dinner.
The Barpa board wish to congratulate all the nominees and winners and Supply Nation for a very successful event.
In other Barpa news we will shortly commence our next project for Defence. The project will construct facilities to support the introduction of new mortar weapons training simulation systems at three Defence bases nationally. Barpa will commence work soon on Irwin Barracks in WA, Robertson Barracks in the NT, and Holsworthy Barracks in NSW.
Photo Above: The Barpa Team celebrating their Supplier of the Year nomination.
From left to right: Michael Read, Alex Kerr, Janine Coombs, Derek Gnauck, Graham Atkinson, Jeremy Clark and Simon Walter
Mernda Rail, Info and Jobs Hub
In May 2017, Barpa successfully completed a fit out of the Mernda Rail, Info and Jobs Hub in Epping, Victoria for the Mernda Rail Extension Project.
Barpa was contracted by John Holland to deliver the project which involved extensive refurbishment and remodelling of an existing building. The project was managed by Barpa’s Alex Kerr and Carl Peterson. Alex and Carl who are both talented artists also contributed their personal art to the project which was scanned and affixed to the walls to provide a warm inviting space, which also paid respect to the Traditional Owners, the Wurundjeri people.
The Jobs Hub will help jobseekers from all backgrounds find meaningful employment. The Hub offers face-to-face support, assistance with job applications and resume writing, as well as training opportunities, and will connect jobseekers to employers and suitable roles.
Minister for Industry and Employment Wade Noonan and Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green joined workers at the project site in Epping on 31st May to officially open the Jobs Hub for the $600 million project.
Cockram welcomes strategic investment by Kajima Corporation
Image: Motohiro Umehara (Managing Director, Kajima Australia) and Malcolm Batten (Managing Director, Cockram Construction)
Cockram Construction (“Cockram”) is pleased to announce that international construction company, Kajima Corporation (“Kajima”) has made a strategic investment in Cockram that will see them become the majority shareholder in Cockram.
Kajima is one of the world’s largest construction companies and their investment will ultimately provide further long term financial support and certainty for Cockram’s indigenous construction services company venture.
Kajima has a global track record of investing in high performance businesses and retaining and working with local management to grow their businesses. Their investment in Cockram is a vote of confidence in the strategic direction of our company. It will not change Barpa’s current operation in any way and all current Barpa management and leadership will remain unchanged.
Kajima’s investment in Cockram will ultimately lead to a merger between Cockram’s Australian business and Kajima’s other strategic investment in Australia, Icon Construction Group (“Icon”). This merger will combine Cockram’s specialist social infrastructure business with Icon’s extensive residential and commercial construction expertise to create a compelling full spectrum construction services offering in Australia.
For further information please see the Cockram announcement.
Barpa News Update
“Barpa plays a leading role increasing indigenous employment growth in trades”
Barpa recently organised and hosted a Trade Employment Seminar for subcontractors at its Melbourne office. While Barpa is growing its ranks of Aboriginal staff through the use of our professional program; “Indigenous Pathways to Construction”, we also seek to stimulate broader growth in career opportunities for trade and labour based candidates. Many of the new jobs to be created by the Indigenous Procurement Policy will be in our subcontractor’s construction workforces around the nation.
To encourage this development, Barpa organised for some of Cockram’s known and trusted subcontractors to attend and from Barpa director Jeremy Clark. Jeremy spoke about the foundation of Barpa, its aims, and serious intent to ‘Close the Gap’ in addressing the significant disparity in the health, wellbeing and prosperity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.
Following an explanation on our subcontractor selection process that emphasises Indigenous Engagement, we had four presentations from organisations who offer Aboriginal candidate sourcing, training, mentoring, and apprenticeship services.
The session was a success, with many new connections formed between our vitally important subcontractor partners, and those organisations who exist to find, place, train and support Aboriginal job candidates.
We would hope to repeat the initiative at some of our other locations nationally in 2017.
For further information please call Jeremy Clark on 1300 935 007
Barpa News Update
With the financial year-end now passed, we have had the opportunity to reflect on the achievements of our business over the past 12 months. We are in strong position for the next financial year with over $30.0M work in hand, and have numerous opportunities for future works across Australia.
These future opportunities include multiple projects in the Northern Territory region. As such, we are excited to announce that we have recently opened a new office in Darwin and are committed to growing Barpa in this region having employed a number of indigenous staff here already.
In other news, during the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) week in July, Barpa employee Alex Kerr from the Wurundjeri Tribe completed a Welcome to Country ceremony with Ambulance Victoria at their Doncaster head office in South Melbourne.
We have also participated in two other Welcome to Country ceremonies for the recently awarded projects RAAF Base in Point Cook, Victoria and the RAAF Learmonth Combined Mess in Western Australia.
Barpa News Update
Since our last news update, the Barpa team has been busy on multiple fronts. As a majority owned indigenous business, Barpa recognised the recent National Sorry Day and National Reconciliation Week, by participating and sponsoring multiple community and corporate events. National Sorry Day acknowledges the impact of forcible removal policies on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, known as the Stolen Generations.
National Reconciliation Week ran from the 27th of May to the 3rd of June. 2016 was a significant milestone for reconciliation in Australia as it marked the 25th year. The week is an annual celebration, and a time for all Australians to reflect on our shared histories and on the contributions and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
In other news, we have continued to secure additional work, and are thrilled to announce that Barpa has been awarded three new projects since our last update.
In New South Wales, continuing the successful relationship between Cockram Construction and the Australia Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), Barpa has recently been awarded a project to extend the Waste Management Services Building within the high security precinct in South Sydney’s Lucas Heights.
In the Northern Territory, we are undertaking heritage project works for The Royal Australian Air Force in Darwin and in Western Australia, we have been awarded project works for The Royal Australian Air Force at their Learmonth base. We have employed a number of new indigenous staff to work on these projects.
National Reconciliation Week: Our History, Our Story, Our Future.
As Australians, we are all here, woven into this country.
As part of our reconciliation journey, there are truths to tell, stories to celebrate, and relationships to grow.
Reconciliation is at the heart of our nations’ future.
Left: Barpa’s Alex Kerr conducted a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony at the National Sorry Day breakfast with the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) and Aboriginal Housing Victoria (AHV).
Right: Barpa team members took part in The Long Walk in late May. The walk is inspired by Michael Long’s 2004 walk to Canberra to get the lives of indigenous people back on the National Agenda. The walk starts at Federation Square in Melbourne and finishes at the Melbourne Cricket Ground for the indigenous AFL round.
Barpa sponsored the 2016 Dreamtime Careers Expo at the Korin Gamadji Institute as part of National Reconciliation Week. The event attracted over 1,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders from across Australia looking for career opportunities.
Left: A Welcome to Country was completed by Charles Madden, a Gadigal man of the Eora Nation at Barpa’s HMAS Penguin project. This event involved Barpa being welcomed to the Eora Nation lands and coincided with the commencement of Barpa’s construction works on the base.
Right: Barpa directors, staff and current clients attended the “Dream Time at the G” AFL football match between Essendon and Richmond as part of National Reconciliation Week.
Supply Nation Connect 2016: Innovation for Impact
Earlier this month, Barpa representatives sponsored a booth and attended the Supply Nation Connect 2016 event held in Sydney. The 2 day event, which was attended by Barpa’s General Manager Jeremy Clark, includes a full day of workshops, tradeshow and the gala awards dinner on the final night.
“As a majority-owned indigenous business, it’s important for Barpa to stay connected with other indigenous businesses so we can continue to support each other” Jeremy said.
The annual event is one of Australia’s leading supplier diversity conferences. It brings together indigenous business owners, procurement professionals and buyers, which provides an opportunity to connect and explore potential new business opportunities together.
Barpa Opens a New Office In Canberra
Last month marked another significant milestone for Barpa Construction Services with the opening of a new office in Canberra.
Barpa was fortunate enough to have guest speaker Richard Eccles, Deputy Secretary, Indigenous Affairs from the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, speak at the official launch.
“Barpa’s success provides an example of government and businesses working in tandem in an effort to close the gap on Indigenous disadvantage,” Richard said.
“Through the policy, the Commonwealth Government is leveraging its purchasing power to boost the Indigenous business sector.
“Like Barpa, there are Indigenous businesses across the nation that are benefiting from Commonwealth procurement. By 2020, the Government has committed to award three percent of Australian government contracts to Indigenous businesses.
“Barpa makes a contribution to creating wealth and jobs, and plays a vital role in the effort to support Indigenous economic independence.”
With the Indigenous Procurement Policy only being launched less than a year ago, it’s positive to see the progress on the total number of contracts being awarded to indigenous owned businesses, and increased employment opportxunities for indigenous people.
For more information, please refer to the official press release.
What’s Been Happening At Barpa?
Barpa have recently been awarded a number of projects for the Department of Defence at their Puckapunual Military Area base in central Victoria. With a combined value of close to $5.0 M, these contracts will see Barpa deliver a range of building works and significant maintenance activities at the bases.
We now have projects under construction in four states/territories across Australia which includes various maintenance and refurbishment works as part of the Defence Estate Works Program.
Barpa is now accredited to ISO 9001, AS 4801,ISO 14001 and OFSC allowing us to undertake more project opportunities nationally.
Barpa Awarded Contract with Defence
The recently awarded project will see Barpa Construction Services deliver a range of building works and significant maintenance activities, for the Department of Defence at their Puckapunyal Military Area located in central Victoria.
Jeremy Clark, Barpa General Manager said “Since we began the process to form Barpa in partnership with Cockram Construction some 18 months ago, we have been working hard to communicate our capabilities to potential clients in areas of interest that best align with our business approach. This also includes our plans for the development of Barpa’s future vision and growth. We are delighted to finally be under contract”.
Barpa is now pricing work in all Australian States, and has five projects under contract in Victoria and one in Western Australia and the ACT.
Barpa / Cockram Team’s Community–2–Day Effort for the Stars
On a cold rainy Monday, at a windswept northern oval battling a four goal breeze, six hardy workers from Barpa and Cockram met up to do a “Community -2- Day” charity working bee at the Fitzroy Stars indigenous football team’s home ground. The team put in a massive day of digging, sawing, bolting and concreting to build 12 benches around the oval to allow more comfortable viewing of the football by fans, including many community elders. After power outages, and delayed deliveries, the team overcame the conditions to get the benches built and installed at the beginning of NAIDOC week.
NAIDOC week is a time to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, culture and achievements and is an opportunity to recognise the contributions that Indigenous Australians make to our country and our society. One of the highlights of the week in Fitzroy is the big football match at the end of the week. Now the many fans that attend that match (and the weekly league games) will have somewhere more convenient to sit and watch the footy.
Simon Walter (Operations Manager for Barpa) said; “Our engagement with indigenous business and the community is increasing all the time. We have a number of indigenous suppliers of business support services now, and we hope this will be the first of many linkages and contacts with the broader indigenous community in the places where we operate. We’d like to thank the Aborigines Advancement League -who look after the ground- for the opportunity to do the project and hope the fans enjoy the seating!”
Barpa Construction Services – Open for Business
The Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations and Cockram Construction launched their new partnership at Bunjilaka Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Melbourne Museum on Monday 30 June 2014
Following a warm Welcome to Country by Wurundjeri Elder Aunty Di Kerr, Indigenous Scholar Professor Marcia Langton delivered an inspiring speech focussing on the rise of indigenous businesses in Australia and confirmed the positive attributes that come from partnerships such as this one between the Federation and Cockram Construction.
Barpa Construction Services is majority-owned by the Federation and will combine with the Construction skills of Cockram to participate in Federal, State and corporate capital procurement programs aimed at closing the Gap for the first peoples of Australia.
FVTOC Official Launch 2014
Barpa directors and executives attending the official launch of the FVTOC in Queen’s Hall at Parliament House in Victoria on May 30th 2014.