6 June 2024

Aboriginal Pastoral Academy expands to cover East Kimberley region

The Cook Government, industry and community are working together to build careers for young Aboriginal people in northern pastoral industry

The Cook Government is supporting the expansion of the pioneering Aboriginal Pastoral Academy into the East Kimberley, helping build career pathways for young Aboriginal people in the State’s north.

The Academy is a partnership between Nyamba Buru Yawuru, Job Pathways and the Kimberley Pilbara Cattlemen’s Association, with support from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.

The successful initiative, which has been operating in the West Kimberley since 2021, will hold its first East Kimberley-based pre-employment program at Mistake Creek Station in August, with graduates ready for work in the 2025 pastoral season.

There are currently 28 graduates from recent pre-employment pastoral training programs employed on Kimberley and Pilbara cattle stations.

Graduates from the entry level program are intensively mentored for their first two years of employment, with their workplaces also receiving a range of support throughout the placement.

The Academy also supports existing Aboriginal pastoralists to build their skills and leadership, with a group of 23 pastoralists recently taking part in the Indigenous Grazing for Profit course in Kununurra.

The Academy’s expansion is supported through the Future Drought Fund Farm Business Resilience Program, which is jointly funded by the State and Federal Government.

Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Don Punch:

“The Aboriginal Pastoral Academy is a successful partnership between station owners, industry bodies and indigenous organisations in our State’s north.

“This important program links its participants with training opportunities, mentoring and work placements – delivering job opportunities for young Aboriginal people and building industry capability in the northern pastoral industry.

“The program has garnered strong industry and community support, and it is fantastic to see these employment and skills development opportunities extend into the East Kimberley.”

Comments attributed to Agriculture and Food Minister Jackie Jarvis:

“The Academy is helping support careers in WA’s important pastoral industry, working across three levels – preparing new entrants for the pastoral industry, programs to support career progression and leadership development.

“This program provides an excellent foundation for supporting careers and pastoral industry leaders into the future.”

As stated by Kimberley MLA Divina D’Anna:

“This innovative program is providing opportunities for the next generation of job-ready Aboriginal pastoral employees.

“I welcome this announcement from the Minister today and look forward to the expansion of the Aboriginal Pastoral Academy into the East Kimberley.”


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