Yarrabah is an Indigenous Community in Far North Queensland. ‘Paradise by the Sea’ states the council’s advertising and this is no exaggeration. Beauty abounds. It is situated on the coast inside the Great Barrier Reef and although it is only just across the inlet from Cairns, it could be another world. The trip to Yarrabah traverses a steep and richly foliated tropical mountain range. Views to the Coral Sea are spectacular.
Over the past three months MEGT has been working with Traditional Owners of the Gunggandji Land and Sea Country in Yarrabah to establish an Indigenous Ranger program. So far for this project MEGT has recruited and placed a Ranger Coordinator in Payroll Services,provided full recruitment and management services to four Ranger trainees and tomorrow we will place a school-based trainee with them.
We have been asked by the Gunggandji management to recruit and provide labour hire services for a Traditional Use of Marine Resources Agreement (TUMRA) Coordinator and last week we commenced the recruitment of a CEO for the Gunggandji Aboriginal Corporation. It’s a busy time and this is a very exciting project.
Working to their Indigenous Land and Sea Management Plan, the Gunggandji Rangers have been funded by the State and Federal Governments through the Working on Country Program and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority to establish Indigenous Land Use Agreements and a TUMRA. The Rangers are being trained in Certificates II, III, and IV – Conservation and Land Management and the key features of the program will see them managing weed control and eradication, feral animal control, fire management, turtle and dugong management and cultural mapping.
Throughout Indigenous Australia the Ranger Programs provide highly regarded and sought after positions within their communities. Few things give Indigenous Australians more pride than working to protect and manage their traditional country and its cultural assets. MEGT’s provision of flexible professional services has been strongly endorsed by the Gunggandji Board as meeting the real needs they could not economically do on their own.