- Sixth Camping with Custodians campground officially opens at Djarindjin today
- More than $400,000 in project funding also awarded to eight Aboriginal tourism operators on the Dampier Peninsula
- Initiatives part of Jina: WA Aboriginal Tourism Action Plan 2021-2025, funded by the WA Government's $20 million Aboriginal Tourism Fund and delivered by Tourism WA
Aboriginal tourism operators in the State's North-West are set for success with two new initiatives delivered on the Dampier Peninsula through the Jina: Western Australian Aboriginal Tourism Action Plan 2021-2025 (Jina Plan).
The sixth Camping with Custodians (CwC) campground officially launches today, where visitors are able to learn about local Aboriginal culture and customs by staying on Bardi Country with the Traditional Owners at Djarindjin, on the tip of the Dampier Peninsula.
CwC is an Australian-first network of high-quality campgrounds owned and run by Aboriginal people, creating income, employment and training opportunities for local communities.
The opening of the Djarindjin Campground comes as eight Aboriginal tourism businesses on the Dampier Peninsula are awarded more than $400,000 through the Dampier Peninsula Tourism Infrastructure and Capacity Building Fund, with operators to receive grants between $2,500 and $156,000 each to improve business capacity and visitor experiences.
The funds will be channelled into marketing initiatives, product expansion, and accommodation and facility upgrades, capitalising on increased visitor numbers resulting from the fully sealed Cape Leveque Road. Some funds will be received by operators this financial year, with an anticipated second round release scheduled for September 2022.
The funding supports the Dampier Peninsula Activation project, administered by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, which offers mentoring support to business owners.
The Infrastructure and Capacity Building Fund has been funded by the WA Government's $20 million Aboriginal Tourism Fund and supported by Tourism WA as part of the Jina Plan implementation. The Djarindjin Campground was partly funded through the State Government's WA Recovery Plan, and also received support through the Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation.
The Jina Plan was developed by Tourism WA and other government agencies, alongside the Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council and the Aboriginal tourism industry.
It supports a range of initiatives including the development of new Aboriginal tourism experiences, training to help Aboriginal people to work in the tourism industry, and the development of administration and booking systems to support Aboriginal tourism businesses.
It will also fund up to three new CwC campgrounds around the State.
The Jina Plan is available to view on the Tourism WA corporate website.
Comments attributed to Tourism Minister Roger Cook:
"We know that Aboriginal tourism must be the beating heart of WA's tourism strategy, so the WA Government is immensely proud to support these two important initiatives in the North-West.
"The Camping with Custodians program allows visitors to experience the world's oldest living continuous culture in a personal, authentic setting, while creating employment and training opportunities for local Aboriginal communities. The Djarindjin Campground now joins the Camping with Custodians network, which also includes Imintji, Mimbi, Doon Doon, Violet Valley and Peedamulla.
"Visitors want more authentic and meaningful Aboriginal experiences, and the Dampier Peninsula Tourism Infrastructure and Capacity Building Fund will support Aboriginal operators on the Dampier Peninsula with growing their businesses, enhancing their visitor experiences, and will create jobs and economic opportunities for the region."
Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
"The Dampier Peninsula has some of the best Aboriginal tourism offerings in Australia, backed by a stunning natural environment and a rich Aboriginal history.
"The new Dampier Peninsula Tourism Infrastructure and Capacity Building Fund, which supports the Dampier Peninsula Activation project, represents a significant investment in visitor offerings while growing Aboriginal tourism on the Dampier Peninsula.
"These are all part of the McGowan Government's commitment to develop more authentic Aboriginal tourism experiences across the State."
Tourism Minister's office - 6552 6500
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200