Marnin Studio, a social enterprise in Fitzroy Crossing, has become the first venture partner of Social Ventures Australia’s (SVA) WA Venture Philanthropy Fund

Marnin Studio is an arts and therapeutic studio operating out of the Marninwarntikura Women’s Resource Centre.

Venture mission

Marnin Studio is committed to supporting women to turn the things they love into projects that provide a source of income, as well as enable skills transfer and therapeutic aid. The studio empowers local Indigenous women to become leaders and change agents in their community.

Partnership objectives

As part of their partnership with SVA, Marnin Studio will receive a combination of funding and capacity building support with a view to ensuring that the studio becomes a sustainable enterprise that will continue to offer healing and growth for the Fitzroy Crossing community.

‘The relationship with SVA will help us to plan for many good things to happen in the community and reciprocally, we can provide knowledge and support to SVA that will help them and their partners to work with other communities like ours to bring about long-term positive benefits.’ 

June Oscar AO, CEO, Marninwarntikura

SVA support

SVA is supporting Marnin Studio with seed-funding to become a financially sustainable social enterprise and providing hands-on capacity building support, with the help of the WA pro bono network to help the studio grow more efficiently and effectively.

The partnership with Marnin Studio and Marninwarntikura Women’s Resource Centre is also an opportunity for SVA to learn from, partner with and support an Indigenous organisation that is successfully driving place-based community-led solutions for transformational change.

Marnin Studio is another fantastic initiative from Marninwarntikura, who’ve continuously shown that community-led solutions are often the most impactful way to achieve social change. We’re excited to work alongside Marninwarntikura and the Fitzroy Crossing community to understand and build on their success, and to support the studio to inspire a new generation of empowered women, who will continue to lead the change they themselves want to see.’

Shiri Leventhal, WA Venture Philanthropy Fund Manager, SVA

Social Enterprise Awards









Case study

Nita Williams is a Wangkatjangka woman from Junjuwa community near Fitzroy Crossing. Her mother and grandmother came from the Great Sandy Desert and her mother is a well-known painter at Mangkaja Arts in Fitzroy Crossing.

In 2006, Nita was working at home on the veranda making baskets when Marninwarntikura’s CEO June Oscar drove past, stopped the car and got out to take a look. June was impressed with the colourful baskets and asked Nita to come to the Studio to teach the women. Nita agreed and came to Marnin Studio and has been making baskets at the Studio and running workshops with the local women ever since.

Nita has also turned her attention to making other products, including painted boab nuts and block printing. She has also developed into a great advocate for Marnin Studio, and has refined her speaking skills and built more confidence with each new customer and radio interview. She regularly encourages women to join the program, and works with them, teaching them how to weave and paint. In 2017 Nita will step into a new role teaching workshops to tourists.