Focusing on the importance of mapping Australia's traditional landscape and empowering Indigenous communities to participate in the digital economy, Andrew Dowding and his team at Winyama Digital Solutions are driving change from the ground up.
Founded in 2019, Winyama Digital Solutions is an Indigenous-owned and operated geospatial and cloud consultancy – one of few that exist in Australia. With clients across the public sector, private sector and within Indigenous communities, the value Winyama often brings to these businesses is the breadth and depth of understanding culture, and connecting this culture with the work required to build digital solutions for Indigenous communities.
A Ngarluma Traditional Owner from the Pilbara region, Andrew Dowding created the business after a decade of working with many Indigenous communities on cultural mapping.
Andrew and the team at Winyama set out to ensure they could preserve and protect historic, cultural knowledge and help communities better care for Country, through cloud-based technology. As the business grows, they give First Nation people across Australia the skills and tools to gain sovereignty over their data and intellectual property, while inspiring further conversations with International Traditional Owners and partners.
Led by a team that is dedicated to giving back to their community and Country, Winyama is also a strong supporter of career upskilling in technology. In five years, Winyama has trained more than one thousand Indigenous people in geospatial mapping through the Indigenous Mapping Workshop. It's a free social initiative, dedicated to educating future generations of Indigenous talent.
A trailblazing for-purpose business, it’s easy to see why Winyama took out the top title as the 2023 Telstra Best of Business Awards Business of the Year and National Indigenous Excellence Winner.
Reflecting on receiving the Awards, Andrew said, “The Awards process encouraged us to positively reflect on our business, allowing us to cement our purpose, celebrate our team’s successes and understand where we can continue to improve and thrive. It was an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling experience, and the national recognition and support we’ve received since winning has been remarkable.”
Winyama is an excellent case study of how businesses can achieve both profitability and have a meaningful social impact.
The Telstra Best of Business Awards gave us so much more than trophies – we’ve made lifelong connections with the other finalists, the Telstra team and judging panel and have been given an invaluable opportunity to represent our community. I strongly recommend other businesses to enter; you’ll walk away a winner regardless.
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