Land Council Support Officer Far West Zone/NSWALC
Where are you based?Broken Hill, NSW
HfH/FHBH projects participated in:
Broken Hill, Wilcannia, Menindee, Bourke, Walgett (Namoi & Gingie), Goodooga, Toomelah, Boggabilla, Wadeye (Port Keats), Nguiu, Pilliga, Weilmoringle, Ivanhoe, Enngonia, Condobolin and the Healthy Housing Worker Pilot Program.
BSC Environmental Health Management
Construction & Fabrication Boilermaker
What do you bring to the HH work?
- Cultural Competency and Culturally Appropriate Communication Skills.
- 10 yrs Working experience on Aboriginal Community Based Projects
- 15yrs Diverse construction & fabrication experience
What have you learned from being involved in the work?
My experience was deflating as an indigenous man attempting to make a difference.
After 10 years involvement across Australia my peoples living environment has not improved.
The FHBH & HfH projects identified the lack of trade quality involved in construction of Identified Housing and Infrastructure but not at any time did government, AHO etc set about developing a methodology of resolving the poor quality of construction or improvement of materials used.
Trade skills of local community people have not progressed to real trade training outcomes e.g. Trade Apprenticeships.
Communication with locals at all stages of project development and roll out is appalling and demoralising to my communities. Self determination is now rhetoric that government departments use for funding approval.
On the positive side Healthabitat has a professional work ethic that has managed to maintain and develop invaluable data sets that if used correctly will undoubtedly improve the living environment of my peoples.
More importantly Healthabitat continues to maintain their integrity with all Aboriginal and Torres Straight Island communities. This has been achieved through their ability to deliver positive outcomes on the ground in community working alongside community members and following through with community expectations in a culturally competent manner.
Numerous ministers and government and non government department managers would do well if they worked alongside Healthabitat Project Managers to gain an insight along with an education on how Project Development and Roll Out should be delivered.
In an ideal world what directions, ideas, results would you like to see HH and the Housing for Health work become or achieve?
Ideally HH should be utilised to design housing & infrastructure, develop material lists for construction and develop a maintenance schedule that could be rolled out worldwide for social housing.
Training and Business could utilise and support HH to plan for authentic Self Determination and empowerment of indigenous people of Australia.
Positive outcomes require effective changes to past methods of service delivery especially to remote and isolated communities.
Government can no longer afford to squander money on social housing projects that are cost prohibitive due to inferior quality construction materials, unprofessional project, planning and roll out procedures.
Sustainable outcomes will reduce costs and develop positive outcomes at a community level.
It’s high time government implemented strategies recommended by numerous expensive and repetitive consultative reports. Keep it simple and spend the money where it is genuinely needed to effect positive and sustainable outcomes. That is at community level on the ground in communities.