Aboriginal program empowers community

The Illawarra Aboriginal community is one of just three in the state to be chosen to take part in a NSW government program that gives them a greater say in decisions.

The Illawarra and Wingecarribee Regional Alliance (Illawarra South East) has been chosen to participate in the Local Decision Making initiative.

The two other regional groups selected are Murdi Paaki Regional Assembly (Far Western NSW) and Many Rivers Regional Coalition of Peak Organisations (North Coast).

Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Victor Dominello was in Wollongong yesterday for the launch.

‘‘Local Decision Making represents a landmark change to the way Aboriginal communities and government agencies work together,’’ Mr Dominello said.

‘‘We want to build on the existing leadership capacity in local Aboriginal communities through training to improve probity and ethics, leadership, financial accountability and management skills.’’

Illawarra Regional Aboriginal Alliance chairman Darrell Brown said the community was delighted to have been chosen.

‘‘This is unbelievable news and a fantastic opportunity for our community,’’ he said. ‘‘We are very proud to be selected as one of the three sites across the state to be part of this important initiative.

‘‘This has only become possible because all of our Aboriginal regional alliance partners united to achieve this one common goal.

‘‘It is the pinnacle of our combined efforts.’’

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