Mid-North Coast Indigenous rangers to tackle environmental projects

3 May 2018

A wide-range of environmental rehabilitation and management projects worth nearly $2-million will be undertaken across our region over the next three years by indigenous rangers following today’s announcement of new funding to assist Mid North Coast Aboriginal Rangers undertake their work.

Indigenous ranger groups on the Mid-North Coast will share in the Federal funding boost of more than $250 million over three years to continue their vital contribution to environmental, cultural and economic outcomes in our communities.

Federal Member for Lyne Dr David Gillespie said the increased funding for Taree Indigenous Development and Employment Ltd (TIDE), will continue to deliver jobs and opportunities for local First Australians.

“The Australian Government is proud to support the fantastic work being done by Mid North Coast Aboriginal Rangers,” Dr Gillespie said.

“By providing $1,944,433.63, Mid North Coast Aboriginal Rangers will be supported to undertake a number of important environmental projects across the region which will help see the protection and conservation of threatened species, marine systems and cultural places, while addressing environmental threats caused by feral animals, invasive weeds, marine debris and wild fire.”

“I look forward to continuing to see the incredible contributions made by the local rangers as they protect our beautiful and diverse country.”

TIDE is an Aboriginal owned and operated “not for profit” company that currently has 21 employees, 19 of whom are Aboriginal.

Uncle John Clark OAM is the Chief Executive Officer of TIDE.

TIDE was established in 2008 to deliver a range of Commonwealth and State programs to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people.

The Working on Country (WOC) Aboriginal Ranger program (2009- present). The WOC program currently provides employment of 10 full time equivalent Aboriginal Ranger positions. There are four teams operating from Taree (4 rangers), Gloucester (2), Karuah (3) and Forster (2).

The rangers undertake a range of natural resource management works for a range of clients including; NPWS, Mid Coast Council, Crown Lands, Local Land Services, Mid Coast Water, Landcare and Coastcare and private landholders. Works include weed control, tree planting, bush regeneration, fee collection at Farquhar Park,marine debris clean ups and drone operations,

The ranger teams are fully equipped with all tools and equipment and 4 WD vehicles. TIDE also has two twin reel Quikspray Units.

All team supervisors hold Diplomas in Conservation and Land Management (C&LM) and all team members are expected to hold Certificates 4 in C&LM from July this year.

Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion said that 118 ranger groups would benefit from the record funding.

“More than 2000 First Australians are employed as Indigenous rangers through this program, protecting land and sea country and contributing immeasurably to their communities,” said Minister Scullion.

“The Coalition Government is absolutely committed to the continued success of the Indigenous ranger program. This additional investment of more than $250 million over three years will bring total support to the program to a record $640 million over eight years.

As part of the $640 million commitment the Coalition Government has invested $30 million to build capacity within the Indigenous Rangers Program. The program will allow rangers to build their technical skills and take up the opportunities offered in compliance and land and sea management.

“Despite Labor and foreign funded green-groups trying to stir up uncertainty over the program’s future, the Coalition is the true friend of Indigenous Rangers – not only did we initially establish the successful program under the Howard Coalition Government – but we have committed more funding than the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd Government ever did,” Minister Scullion said.

ENDS

Jason Hazard, Anthony Moore, Fiona Anderson, Neihana Kidwell, Derek Clarke, Benny Clarke, John Clark (TIDE CEO), Glenn Jonas, Local Federal MP Dr David Gillespie, Shayne Taylor, Chris Sheed (TIDE Program Manager).

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