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Evolve Communities wins at national 2024 Telstra Best of Business Awards

Dianne Bortoletto -

Building a better Australia based on kindness is at the heart of Evolve Communities, the winner of the national 2024 Telstra Best of Business Awards in the Building Communities category.

Evolve Communities is Australia's trusted authority for Indigenous cultural awareness and Ally training. Led by Aboriginal Elder, LinkedIn Top Voice and Author, Aunty Munya Andrews and non-Indigenous Community Engagement Specialist, Churchill Fellow and Ally, Carla Rogers, their goal is to inspire ten million Allies to create a kinder, more inclusive Australia.

By holding equality at its core, the judges recognised Evolve Communities is tackling the most divisive issue in Australia with a unique model that promotes respect and inclusivity for all.

Evolve Communities shares no blame, no guilt, no shame philosophy to ensure its programs remain refreshing and forward focused.

Founded in 2011 by Carla Rogers with Aunty Munya joining as co-owner and director in 2014, this is the first time Evolve Communities has been acknowledged with an award.

"The main reason that we haven't applied for an award before was that it was a massive effort that we could only achieve with our incredible team," Aunty Munya said.

"As an Aboriginal Elder, my life's purpose is to share my cultural knowledge and to leave a legacy of Dreamtime wisdom for generations to come.

"When I'm sharing my culture, or teaching about the impact of colonisation on my people, and I see the penny drop, to see the sudden understanding, there's nothing like it. I can't imagine doing anything else."

Co-Director and Ally, Ms Rogers, said to win in this Building Communities category validated their business and core vision.

"You could imagine our excitement as first timers to learn that we were NSW Finalists in not only one but two categories, Building Communities and Indigenous Excellence," Ms Rogers said.

"And then to get the phone call, that I almost didn't answer because it was an unknown number, from a Telstra Senior Executive to share that Evolve were the NSW Building Communities winner, that was next level."

Ms Rogers acknowledged the seven NSW state award winners for their contribution to building communities.

Aunty Munya said she would like to see more Indigenous people engage in business to reach their full potential and realise their destiny.

"For me this award not only meant that what Evolve does is proper business, it validated me as a proper businesswoman and entrepreneur," she said.

Seven businesses were recognised as national category winners at the 2024 Telstra Best of Business Awards, selected from more than 22,000 nominations of small and medium-sized businesses nationwide.

The judges noted that Aunty Munya's influence on social media will help Australia move forward with gentleness and kindness.

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