Our publishing deal for So Far, So Good was a bit unusual – it included substantial donations to Indigenous-led charities.
Pantera Press have issued a media release about it, which I’ve included in full below. Do you have thoughts? I’d love to hear them. Leave a comment, below, and let me know.
Pantera Foundation donates $10,000 each to Seed Mob and the Indigenous Literacy Foundation on release of So Far, So Good by Aaron Fa’Aoso and Michelle Scott Tucker
In February 2021 Pantera Press acquired world rights for So Far, So Good, debut memoir of Torres Strait Islander actor, director and producer Aaron Fa’Aoso, co-written with acclaimed biographer Michelle Scott Tucker, in a six-figure pre-empt from Danielle Binks at Jacinta di Mase Management. As part of this deal the Pantera Foundation committed to donate $20,000 to Indigenous-led environmental and literacy organisations, in consultation with Fa’Aoso and Scott Tucker.
Fa’Aoso and Scott Tucker chose to split the funding equally between Seed Mob and the Indigenous Literacy Foundation. On the day of release, 30 August 2022, each organisation received $10,000 of untied funding allowing them to use the donation where it will have the most impact. This flexibility of support is important to Fa’Aoso and Scott Tucker and aligns with Pantera Press’ promise to readers that ‘by simply buying a Pantera Press book you are making a difference’.
Aaron Fa’Aoso said: ‘The Torres Strait region is faced with the imminent threat of rising sea levels that over a 50-year period will submerge the lower laying Islands such Poruma, Masig, Warraber, Saibai, Boigu and Iama. That is almost half the populated communities of the Torres Strait Islands,perhaps making my people future climate refugees. My people and future generations will be disconnected from our homelands that we have inhabited for over a millennia. The threat is real and the current environment impacts have already had consequences for our general livelihood – my family were the first climate change refugees in 1947 when they left Saibai due to saltwater inundation and established Bamaga. So donating proceeds from my memoir to such an organisation as Seed is a necessary must.’
Michelle Scott Tucker said: ‘We are deeply grateful to the Pantera Foundation for its generosity with these donations. Back when we were deciding which publisher to work with, Pantera’s offer of practical and financial commitment to Indigenous social justice made our choice easy. Pantera’s values meshed neatly with our own hopes to write a book that raised powerful issues; a book that might contribute to positive change. As well, Pantera agrees with us that the funds are to be untied – allowing these two terrific Indigenous-led charities to determine for themselves how best to spend the donations. We love that.’
Angel Owen, Butchulla and Woppaburra woman and Seed’s Organising Director, said: ‘A donation of this size is deeply appreciated and goes a long way during this time. It will enable Seed to set strong foundations as a new organisation while continuing to build up young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people across the country to protect country.’
Ben Bowen, Indigenous Literacy Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer said: ‘Thank you to Aaron and Pantera Press for their support of ILF and a huge congratulations on publishing of his new book as well as all his work in celebrating Indigenous culture and excellence.’
Seed is Australia’s first and only Indigenous Youth Climate Network. They are building a movement led by and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to protect country, culture and communities from the causes and impacts of climate change. Their vision is for climate justice. They believe that First Nations leadership and self-determination is critical in building and sustaining strong, resilient communities where everyone can thrive. Seed leads in three key areas: building young First Nations leaders, running campaigns to protect country and build climate justice, elevating First Nations voices and leadership.
ILF invests in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander remote Communities to provide the tools and resources they request to shape the direction of their children’s literacy futures. Through collaborative investment in Community and meaningful strategic partnerships, the ILF supports sustainable and positive change in Indigenous literacy through the supply of books and a focus on the publication of First Nations Content.
Pantera Press was recently named a 2021 Nielsen BookScan Heatseeker, an award recognising short-term and long-term growth, and shortlisted for the Australian Book Industry Awards Small Publisher of the Year 2022. 2021 was the fifth consecutive year of Heatseeker recognition for Pantera Press.
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