A partnership addressing equity and gender in the construction industry and influencing social change has been announced between Lendlease, the Bachar Houli Foundation (BHF), the Korin Gamadji Institute (KGI), and by extension, the Richmond Football Club.
The partnership will create real employment and skilling opportunities for KGI, BHF, AFLW Players, and AFL Wheelchair Players to work on Lendlease’s current and future projects. It offers employment, education, and future career pathways for Aboriginal Victorians and other ethnic minority groups.
The partnership is set to guide industry transformation to drive a more inclusive and diverse workforce. Its focus is on gender, First Nations, cultural diversity, and people of all abilities participating within the workforce and supply chain network.
The announcement of the partnership comes as the Victorian Government launches the Building Equality Policy, an Australian first that aims to increase diversity and disrupt stereotypes in the construction industry. The new requirements are being introduced through Victoria’s Social Procurement Framework.
Lendlease’s Melbourne Quarter development has today hosted representatives from KGI, BHF, and the Richmond Football Club, along with two of Lendlease’s newest recruits, appointed through the partnership.
Speaking at a launch event for the partnership, BHF Founder Bachar Houli expressed his excitement at how the relationship with Lendlease can further enhance the existing BHF Employment Program.
“We established the Bachar Houli Foundation Employment program, with support from the Federal Government, to promote employment among the Muslim youth across Australia and provide professional development opportunities, mentoring, and employment transitional plans,” Houli said.
“A partnership with Lendlease, and the opportunity to work on the Melbourne Quarter project, is something we’re all excited to see come to life and know that our young people are contributing towards growing such a vibrant part of the city.”
Bill Alexandrakis, General Manager of Building in Victoria for Lendlease, spoke about the importance of having a diverse workforce, particularly in the construction industry.
“As an industry of over 1.1 million people, we have a responsibility and obligation as a major Australian-owned contractor to provide long-term career pathways for priority cohorts. It’s our social license to operate,” Alexandrakis said.
“We must ensure the talent and workforce across our projects reflects the diversity of the communities in which we operate. We are collaborating with community and like-minded organisations to make this happen.”
The Bachar Houli Foundation aspires to build a culturally-safe Australia, where young people from all backgrounds are empowered to make the most of their opportunities and contribute to a thriving multicultural nation.
Our aim is to help promote employment among the Muslim youth and provide professional development opportunities, mentors, and networks to enhance opportunities for young Muslim people who are marginalised in the Australian workforce.