Thanks from Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation
November 11, 2016 at 7:00 PM
Dear North Queensland Land Council
On behalf of the Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation and its members, I would like to thank you for all the support and assistance in developing our community development plan.
A special thanks to Jasmine Clubb and Rhonda Jacobsen for their initial and continued support throughout this process, we would never have been able to accomplish this fantastic result without them.
I would also like to thank Jim Gleeson from Plan C for writing such a plan with all its complexities, especially being able to deal with the diverse people and places that we had to travel to and communicate with. Some people were very accepting of the development of this plan and some were not. In the end we came up with an exceptional plan that will assist us to develop the aspirations of the Western Yalanji people for a sustainable and economical employment opportunities for now and into the future.
We would also like to thank the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet for the resource support given to the North Queensland Land Council. This support enabled us to reach this milestone and I hope that the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet continue to support the North Queensland Land Council to empower other traditional owner groups to do the same.
It took some time to finalise the plan but with continued commitment and dedication we reached our goal. When the Board of Directors and Members of the Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation endorsed the plan, Jim asked me if I would like to enter it in the 2016 Planning Institute of Australia Awards. At first I had my doubts about it. I did not think we would get anywhere in the mainstream but Jim reminded me that this plan was as good as any other plan and that we should enter regardless.
On Friday 11th of November, Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation won an award in the category of Public Engagement and Community Development at The Gabba in Brisbane in front of 200 other guests. Winning this award has given me a great feeling of accomplishment and belief that Western Yalanji people can become whatever they want to be as long as we work together.
Chairman Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation