An Aboriginal community emu farm in the Goldfields and a Central Desert community for juvenile offenders are the big winners in the third annual Clean and Healthy Community Awards.
Housing Minister Kim Hames announced the winners of the $34,500 awards when he travelled to the Goldfields and Central Desert region to hand over the awards to the major winners.
The Kurrawang Community, 20km east of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, received $12,000 for the best Clean and Healthy Community with a population over 50, and the Kanpa Community, 130km east of Warburton, received $5,000 as the winner of the community with fewer than 50 people.
Dr Hames, who presented plaques to the winning communities, said he was impressed and delighted by their success.
The Kurrawang Community is running a successful tourist venture with its emu farm and sale of emu products.
“While the community has made considerable improvements that will benefit its tourism industry, it is the improvements in environmental health that go to the heart of increasing its people’s well-being,” Dr Hames said.
The Minister said he was impressed by what was being done to market emu products and moves to give visitors valuable insights into the Aboriginal culture.
At the same time the community was demonstrating a commitment to environmental health.
Dr Hames congratulated the Kanpa Community on establishing a veritable oasis in the middle of the desert.
“This is a double achievement because this community is a facility which provides a culturally appropriate alternative for juvenile offenders,” he said.
“The gardens, which in themselves are a major accomplishment in a remote arid area, are testimony to the newly acquired horticultural skills of many of the young people.”
Dr Hames paid tribute to ATSIC Commissioner Preston Thomas and his family for setting up the community.
This is the third year of the Clean and Healthy Community Awards, in which communities are judged on their dust abatement, absence of litter, water management, waste disposal, beautification and overall appearance.
The Cosmo Newberry Community won the $8,500 second prize, Jigalong won the $4,000 third prize and the Mantamaru Community was given a $5,000 encouragement award.
The Ministry of Housing, Aboriginal Affairs Department, the Health Department of WA and ATSIC sponsor the awards.
Sandy Gater, Minister’s office, 9424 7450
Janet Wainwright, Ministry of Housing 9222 4500