Blackwoods and The Fred Hollows Foundation

Blackwoods is Australia’s leading provider of industrial safety products and services with branches located across Australia.

Since 2008, they have been a major partner of The Fred Hollows Foundation’s work in Australia. This partnership reinforces Blackwoods’, and their parent company, Wesfarmers’, strong commitment to reconciliation and increasing opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander team members, suppliers, contractors and the broader community.

By donating a percentage of sales from their Prosafe Eye & Face Protection products, Blackwoods has donated almost $3 million to restoring sight and transforming lives.

Their customers are delighted to learn that not only are they receiving comfortable, high-quality Prosafe safety products, but that a percentage of their purchase is going directly to help close the gap in eye health experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
 

CASE STUDY: NAIDOC WEEK AT BLACKWOODS

Increasing Indigenous engagement is a key priority for Blackwoods. The business strives to build strong ties and business engagement with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community by working with suppliers, contractors, service providers and customers to ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples feel welcome in its business as team members, customers, suppliers and citizens.

In 2019, this partnership grew from strength to strength and in July at the annual NAIDOC week celebrations, a cheque for $685,000 was presented from Blackwoods to The Fred Hollows Foundation.

To acknowledge this incredible support, Shaun Tatipata, Manager of the Indigenous Australia Program for The Fred Hollows Foundation, gifted Blackwoods a piece of artwork by a very special indigenous artist, Long John Dewar.

Long John is the resident artist at Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge. But having already lost the use of his right eye, Long John was faced with a daunting reality: the loss of vision in his left. Long John was advised to attend an ‘intensive’ surgery day in Darwin facilitated and funded by The Fred Hollows Foundation. The day after his surgery, Long John returned to Katherine, excited to see his paintings more clearly than he had in years.

Shaun Tatipata said: “94% of vision loss in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians is preventable or treatable but, unacceptably, 35% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians have never had an eye test. Thanks to partners such as Blackwoods, The Foundation is keeping up Fred’s fight against this inequity - and The Foundation is making real progress in addressing the eye health gap experienced by Indigenous Australians.”

The Foundation thanks Blackwoods for its ongoing commitment to this important work and looks forward to growing the partnership for years to come.