Zimbabwe-born celebrated cultural ambassador Taku Scrutton is the founder of Ribbon of Africa, an award-winning business celebrating all facets of African culture in Australia through fashion, music and the arts. An Environmental Design graduate of the University of Western Australia, in 2012 Taku was selected as a WA State Finalist for Australia's Ethnic Business Awards and in 2008 named one of '12 Inspiring Women in Small Business in Western Australia' by the Small Business Development Corporation.
In August 2013 Taku was chosen to be part of the 'Your Chair' competition on Network Ten's The Project, taking her place as a panelist alongside hosts Carrie Bickmore, Charlie Pickering and Peter Helliar in a discussion of Australian multiculturalism and the migrant experience. Chosen from hundreds of entries, Taku and the panel also interviewed former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and tennis legend Pat Cash in the program's trademark humorous style.
A resident of Australia for 11 years, Taku's mother and two youngest siblings live in Zimbabwe, where life remains a struggle as the country continues to rebuild its economy. Taku uses her public speaking skills to help her family, whilst inspiring her audiences to celebrate their uniqueness regardless of where they are from. Taku is especially concerned with inspiring the youth of Australia to find their voice.
Taku has been a guest speaker and trainer for local government authorities, not-for-profit organisations, charities and schools throughout the country. Her key speech themes include community celebration and inclusion, overcoming adversity to pursue goals, entrepreneurship, innovation, dreaming boldly and giving life a go.
Taku was named the 2007 Business Migrant of the Year and a 2007 Business Woman of the Year Finalist at the Belmont Busniess Enterprise Centre Awards, and in 2008 Ribbon of Africa was the recipient of Home Based Business of the Year. In 2013 Taku was nominated at the Celebration of African Australian National Awards.
In 2010 Taku featured in a South African Broadcasting Corporation documentary on the African migrant experience in Australia, and in 2012 in 100 Dolls, Countless Hearts, a book featuring Australian, indigenous and migrant doll makers in Australia, published by the Uthando Project. She has been heavily involved with international visits from irenowned African celebrities and performers including Salif Keita, Hugh Masekela, the Soweto Gospel Choir, Umoja, Malaika, and Trevor Noah.
Client Comments for Taku Scrutton
- The fabric of our community has been enriched by the contributions of people such as yourself.
Steve Irons, Federal Member for Swan
- Ms Scrutton spoke of her determination to complete her studies and build a strong future for herself and her family in a most inspirational way, and students, staff, industry partners and parents attending the graduation were most impressed by her determination and courage in the face of adversity.
Liz Harris, CEO, Challenger Institute of Technology, and Telstra Business Women's Award Winner 2009
- Your presentation gave attendees a great insight into your business activities and the significant contribution you are making to the Western Australian community.
Elizabeth Rossi, State Migration Centre, Small Business Development Corporation
- Taku supports charities and initiatives to promote multiculturalism in Australia, and I believe she embodies the best traits of what it means to be Australian, while still holding true to the traditions of her original culture.
Tony Park, author of nine books set in Africa published by Pan MacMillan and Quercus Books
- Thank you for attending our celebration of cultural diversity. I appreciate the time and support that you have given to Multicultural Day.
Terry Boland, Principal, Murdoch College
- Celebrate, Share, Maximise
- African Girl Sings John Farnham to get onto Australian TV
- Rags to Almost-Riches
- Yearn to Learn
Topic SynopsesCelebrate, Share, Maximise
An inspirational talk designed to encourage audiences to celebrate themselves, their culture and heritage; share their differences, stories, and talents with others; and maximise their differences for personal and career success.
African Girl Sings John Farnham to get onto Australian TV
How a one-minute audition video singing John Farnham's 'You're the Voice' gave Taku the chance to interview Australia's Prime Minister on national television.
Rags to Almost-Riches
The story of Taku's journey to Australia from Zimbabwe, her founding Ribbon of Africa, and how she left Richard Branson lost for words.
Yearn to Learn
Taku speaks inspiringly about her education in the classroom, the workplace and life.
"The team were so PATIENT. I was getting frustrated going through the process of deciding and getting the right budget but the team were full of suggestions and nothing seemed too hard."
Amgen Australia Pty Ltd
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