Employment and training
Aboriginal unemployment and under-employment are universally recognised as entrenched national problems, especially in remote areas like the Kakadu/West Arnhem region. The attendant problems of deprivation and dislocation for Aboriginal people, their family and the community is further exacerbated by the absence of support structures and an entrenched culture of welfare dependency.
As a first step, in 2006 Gundjeihmi established the Casual Work Crew program. the program sought to address the local demand for services on one hand and the need for Bininj employment and training on the other. It provides part-time employment for a maximum of 20 people each week. Vehicles, equipment, safety gear and training are supplied as required.
The work projects include land management and landscaping, event preparation, labouring, construction, maintenance and the like. Cleaning services are also provided through the program for houses and buildings at outstations and on contract to ERA, Parks Australia, eriss and the West Arnhem Shire.
Gundjeihmi further supports the initiative in attending to the administration of superannuation, tax and centrelink commitments for workers to ensure the smooth running of the program.
Whilst a highly worthwhile program, casual work nonetheless only ameliorates the work, employment and income needs of Bininj. Thus the connection is self-evident between work, education and skills development, schools, further education and training.
Therefore Gundjeihmi business plans incorporate, as an essential element, planning for the training and employment needs of Bininj. Similarly, Gundjeihmi participate in joint projects on the basis that knowledge and skills are transferred and where at all possible permanent and continuing work opportunities are created.
Charles Darwin University and the Department of Education and Training operate offices and training programs in Jabiru and Gundjeihmi is working towards a more highly integrated and effective partnership with these institutions.