Indigenous heritage in remote Western Australia will be strengthened with $124,000 in funding for the Ilkurlka community.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, and Member for O’Connor, Rick Wilson, said the announcement was part of the Australian Government investment of $1.6 million this financial year in 18 projects across Australia through the Indigenous Heritage Programme to strengthen the connection between Indigenous communities and their heritage values.
Minister Scullion said the projects focus on supporting, identifying, promoting and conserving the heritage values of places important to Indigenous people.
“Projects cover activities including the conservation of burial sites, conducting heritage surveys and repair work, developing cultural heritage management plans and recording and passing on traditional knowledge,” Minister Scullion said.
“Indigenous heritage projects provide education, training, employment and business opportunities that help Indigenous Australians to meet their cultural obligations to care for their country and maintain traditions.”
Member for O’Connor, Rick Wilson, said the Ilkurlka Aboriginal Corporation would receive $124,000 through the 2013-14 round of Indigenous Heritage funding.
“This funding will enable the Ilkurlka Aboriginal Corporation to find sites of significance as part of the Northern Spinifex Heritage Project,” Mr Wilson said.
“The Northern Spinifex Heritage Project (NSHP) will undertake an intensive search for remote sites of significance within the eastern and central zones of the Spinifex Native Title Determination Area in the Great Victoria Desert of WA.
“The activity will be undertaken by teams using a helicopter flying from a remote base and support camp established 900km from Kalgoorlie on the eastern side of the Spinifex Native Title area near Tjintirlkara (Serpentine Lakes).
“At each site, data and information will be recorded, thus continuing a process of locating and identifying Spinifex sites and recording traditional knowledge information initiated by Elders, undertaken by the NSHP over the last few years.
“Information and data gathered during this activity will be added to the Spinifex map and incorporated into the community’s data base and archive.
“The Government’s investment through the Indigenous heritage projects supports Indigenous people to care for their land and heritage and this in turn helps to strengthen and preserve the history, culture and self-esteem of communities.”