Jon Ford

Jon Ford

Minister for Employment Protection; Regional Development; Fisheries; the Kimberley, Pilbara and Gascoyne

    Funding boost for Majala Wilderness Centre

    20/07/2007 5:00 PM
     
    20/7/07

    The State Government has provided $57,000 towards the development of an indigenous tourism centre in the Kimberley region that will specialise in the cultural education of community, school and university groups.

    Regional Development Minister Jon Ford presented Madjulla Inc with the grant to help establish the Majala Wilderness Centre, which is located at the Balginjirr community between Derby and Fitzroy Crossing.

    Mr Ford said the initial stages of the project would include the installation of ablution blocks and the development of much-needed amenities at the existing camping ground.

    “This is the first step towards providing extended facilities at the site, which will include a teaching and dining facility, and then accommodation units further down the track,” he said.

    “An additional $100,000 has been committed to the project through a Lotterywest grant for the teaching and dining facility.”

    Kimberley MLA Carol Martin said the Majala Wilderness Centre would provide a place for courses, conferences and retreats, offering experiences of the indigenous culture of the Nyikina people.

    “Groups will have the opportunity to participate in a number of tours visiting interesting sites along the Fitzroy River and on Aboriginal-owned pastoral stations,” Mrs Martin said.

    “Visitors will also hear talks from local Aboriginal people about traditional life, colonisation and involvement in the pastoral industry.

    “Additional employment and income generation opportunities resulting from the enterprise will also be important for the Balginjirr Community.

    “This is one of a range of measures to assist in improving the quality of life in indigenous communities, which is a key factor in the State Government’s response to the Gordon Inquiry.”

    The Minister said the State Government was committed to encouraging and supporting the sustainable development of, and promoting partnerships with, indigenous communities.

    Funding for the centre has been provided by the Carpenter Government’s Indigenous Regional Development Program, which forms part of the Regional Investment Fund.

    Further information about the program is available from the Department of Local Government and Regional Development on 9217 1500, freecall 1800 620 511 (country only) or http://www.dlgrd.wa.gov.au

    Minister's Office - 9213 7200