Growing up within the Wirangu and Kokatha people of the far west coast of South Australia was a driving force behind Pauly Vandenbergh’s passion for creating opportunities for Aboriginal young people.
An influential cultural educator, Pauly instils strength in identity, pride in culture and country, and works to achieve better health and wellbeing outcomes for his people.
He co-founded the Tjindu Foundation that provides culturally responsive education, sporting and cultural awareness activities to help students succeed at school, gain career opportunities and become future leaders.
A former elite basketballer for the Canberra Cannons, Paul also founded the Aboriginal Basketball Academy, helping Aboriginal children achieve excellence in basketball and school.
He’s now forged an acclaimed career in Australian football as Port Adelaide Football Club’s director of Aboriginal programs and is the national diversity talent manager for the AFL.
Pauly also started the fully Indigenous-owned and operated businesses Wanna Mar tuna fishing and Munda Wines.