McGowan Government's 2021-22 Budget provides $3.5 million to Carnarvon cultural tourism asset, supporting the local Aboriginal community and the regional economy
Award-winning centre celebrates Aboriginal culture in the Gascoyne
The McGowan Government will invest an additional $3.5 million into Carnarvon's Gwoonwardu Mia Gascoyne Aboriginal Heritage and Cultural Centre to continue its role as a valuable multi‑purpose community resource and tourism asset.
The State Government commitment, included in the 2021-22 Budget, builds on significant investment over the past four years to reopen and rejuvenate the centre.
The local icon is well known for its award winning, interactive permanent exhibition, 'Burlganyja Wanggaya: Old People Talking - Listen, Learn and Respect', which shares the stories of the Gascoyne's Aboriginal people in their own words, using text, images, audio and film.
It also provides a hub for locals and tourists alike, including conference rooms for hire, a café, gallery shop, an emerging art centre facility, outdoor performance space, ethnobotanical gardens and grounds based on the region's plants and how they are used by local Aboriginal people.
The new funding will see development of a new 'Yarning Seat Exhibit', which will capture the oral histories of the five main Aboriginal language groups of the Gascoyne, while a central gallery space will also be created for artists in residence, education and school programs.
The Western Australian Museum is working in partnership with local Aboriginal communities to create a sustainable business model at the centre.
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"Gwoonwardu Mia is at the heart of the Carnarvon community and our Government is pleased to support its continued operation.
"The centre provides a unique platform to nurture Aboriginal pride, business development and tourism opportunities in the Gascoyne and surrounding regions.
"I am pleased with the gains the centre has made in recent years, becoming a must-see destination on the tourism map that contributes to the Carnarvon economy."
Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
"This wonderful Aboriginal heritage and cultural centre plays a vital role, sharing community stories and ensuring the transfer of culture and knowledge to younger generations, while educating visitors about the region's rich heritage.
"Since coming to Government we have worked hard to bring the centre back to life, with the support and experience of the WA Museum walking alongside the local community to incubate Aboriginal tourism, art and cultural enterprises.
"This funding will enable Gwoonwardu to continue on its path to sustainability, helping the local community and businesses at the centre to flourish."
Minister's office - 6552 6200