Real opportunities, real success

 In Awards

Posted on: Wednesday, 15 May 2013 at 11:42:09 AM

It all started with one, nine-month contract, nearly three years ago.

It created 15 full-time jobs and helped establish one of the Pilbara’s most successful Aboriginal
businesses agencies REFAP (Real Employment for Aboriginal People).

In 2012 REFAP’s local workforce peaked at 50 employees with workers servicing contracts for clients in the energy and resource sector, as well as major building and construction companies.

From cleaners to heavy equipment operations, REFAP Chief Executive Officer Triscilla Holborow said she and business partner Kelly Grady, had created a diversified client base that provided real employment opportunities for Aboriginal people.

“Not everyone wants to work in mining,” Triscilla said. “We are committed to giving local Aboriginal people the option to do a trade, work in service industries or even hospitality.

“As a Traditional Owner I feel I am in a unique and privileged position to truly understand what Aboriginal people really want when they are looking for work – I’ve been there, done that.

“At REFAP we work hard to ensure our employees are placed in roles that are rewarding, challenging and support a strong family life.”

That hard work paid off last year when REFAP was judged Best Indigenous Business at the annual
Karratha and Districts Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (KDCCI) Business Excellence Awards.

The first-time entrants continued their dream run at the GWN7 WA Regional Small Business Awards
where they took home the title of Best Indigenous Business for the second time. Aborigin “When we entered the KDCCI Business Excellence Awards we had no idea we’d actually win,” Triscilla said.

“We just thought it would be a great opportunity to get our name out there and engage with the local
business community but I guess it just goes to show what passion, belief and a lot of hard work can

“Our involvement in both the KDCCI Business Excellence Awards and the GWN7 WA Regional Small Business Awards has opened doors we never thought possible – suddenly our named and faces were turning up in newspapers across the country!”

When asked if REFAP would be entering this year’s KDCCI Business Excellence Awards Triscilla answered with a resounding “yes”.

She said REFAP’s major goal for the 2013 KDCCI Business Excellence Awards was to encourage other Aboriginal businesses to enter.

“For us it’s not about winning but celebrating and recognising the many highly-successful Aboriginal businesses that operate within the Shire of Roebourne,” Triscilla said.


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