Welcome to Brewarrina Local Aboriginal Land Council
In pursuit of social justice, the council aims to support the local Aboriginal community as it seeks:
The right to a distinct status & culture,
The right to self determination, and
The right to land.
The Brewarrina Aboriginal fish traps is evidence of the sohpisticated Aboriginal understanding of engineering, physics, the land and its natural resources. The Ngemba people are identified as the original custodians and the traps are argued to be the oldest surviving human structure in the world . The Ngemba people shared the traps with other tribes including the Muruwari, Baakandji, Weilwan, Barabinja, Ualarai and Kamilaroi. Particular traps were assigned to each family group and maintained under Aboriginal law. Neighbouring tribes were invited to the fish traps to join corroborees, initiation ceremonies, and meetings for trade and barter.
Brewarrina has been subject to 2 Royal Commissions, 2 Public Enquiries, 2 Ombudsmans Reports, 2 Census periods as NSW"s most disadvantaged and dominant figure in dropping of the edge data. Our small team is working hard to turn things around.
The Brewarrina Mission is the oldest institutional type facility in the state established by the Aboriginal Protection Board in 1886. The mission is associated with the 'Stolen Generation' and the removal of Aboriginal people from their homes during the 1930's. The girls dormitory was also significant because it was utilised by the Aboriginal Protection Board to house young girls who were forcibly removed from their families to be educated in domestic work then sent out in NSW to work. With no buildings remaining the area mantains a strong cultural connection with the original cemetry being maintained by the community.
Identified as one NSW"s most disadvantaged communities for well over a decade, Bre LALC aims to promote community building activities and work with key stakeholders who have a mission to support the states most disadvantaged.
A non-statutory NSW Aboriginal Land Council was established in 1977 as a specialist Aboriginal lobby on land rights. It called for the full scale recognition of Aboriginal rights to land, resolved to form the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council. The Council campaigned as a voluntary group for land rights until the passage of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act (NSW) in 1983. Assisted by the NSW Aboriginal Land Council, the team at Brewarrina continue to work towards local land rights as we address the nations oldest outstanding land claim, a claim that has been outstanding since 1984.
If you are looking for contacts in and around Brewarrina, the following link will provide a list of all major service providers and contacts within the area. Simply click the link below to view.
To be accepted as a member of Brewarrina LALC you must meet the following criteria.
(1) you identify as a person of Aboriginal descent. (2) you present documentation identifying your family's Aboriginal descent (3) be accepted by LALC members as a person of Aboriginal descent. To apply CLICK HERE to download a member application form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail it to us direct. Please attach any documents you would like considered with your application. It will be assessed at the next members meeting. See below for our next meeting date. If you have any questions about this process simply call our office on mobile 0438286477.
'Yadhamayi' is Ngemba for 'Good Man'. This service commenced as a volunteer project run by concerned men within community. The program has become an extremely valuable community asset. The group addresses issues such as drugs, alcohol, mental health, depression and domestic violence. The group are connected to the LALC and run their program from the big green shed Bourke Street (near the grocer). The LALC will also support the Yadhamayi group as they grow their business. Click the link for more info. . .
To apply for a 'Confirmation of Aboriginality complete a membership application (CLICK HERE) and send it to email@example.com (write confimation only if you don't want to become a member). It is important to understand that we must follow policy which states that applicants must be accepted by our members as a person of aboriginal descent. This can be difficult if the members don't actually know you. When we read out your name at the meeting, if you don't think our members will recognise you, please add supporting information to verify your connection to the Brewarrina community. If you have any questions about this process simply call us on mobile 0438286477.
As the Black Lives Matter movement attracts a lot of attention around the world, Brewarrina LALC has begun liaising with local police to address Police / Community relations. Local Police have employed two Aboriginal Community Liaison Officers who actively support the Police when dealing with the Aboriginal community. As ACLO's are some times not available, the LALC has created roles designed to assist Police through their custody and victim support program. Now when Police need assistance we have our own Custody and Victim Support staff who can be on called on to assist police with community relations.
One of the many services Brewarrina LALC offers is community consultation or project management. We are currently key consultants on the Local Emergency Management Committee addressing pandemic concerns, we are conducting weed eradication and silt removal at Brewarrina Fish Traps, and we are also overseeing the Brewarrina Mission Restoration Project. Our community seek inclusion in the works and projects that relate to them and have elected our board as their chosen representatives. Our chairperson is pictured above, with the REDI.E team, preparing fresh water deliveries for our community during the drought.
Brewarrina LALC has over 50 properties around Bre which are currently managed by Mid Lachlan and the Aboriginal Housing Office. We are in discussions to become involved in the management of these properties. Stay tuned whilst we conduct these negotiations. Currently, if you have an enquiry about Aboriginal housing in Brewarrina, please contact Mid Lachlan on 1800 231 160. If however, you wish to go on the waiting list for one of these properties please see us at the LALC.
Our next member meeting is planned for August depending on the Covid situation. Our meetings are held at the Visitors Information Centre with food on and a lucky draw meat tray up for grapbs. Please send confirmation of Aboriginality applications to our email or call John on mobile 0438 286 477 if you would like any further information.
As the Brewarrina community champions our charge for self determination, community representative Tom Biles writes a heart felt message to his late father the great 'Tombo Winters'. The letter identifies the underlying reality. The road to self determination has been a battle that has been felt by multiple generations. To read more CLICK HERE.
Penny Johnson and Naomi Train made the Brewarrina community proud by winning NSW titles as part of their TAFE studies. Penny also took out the states top title being the 'Tafes higher education student of the year.' Well done ladies, it is so great to see our leaders leading by example. To read more about this check out our facebook post CLICK HERE.
Brewarrina LALC is supporting Pathfinders roll out a free birth certificate program in the region. Connecting with key stakeholders we will bring community together to overcome as many ID issues as possible. Pathfinders will be in Brewarrina on the 28 October to accept applications. To read more on our facebook post . . CLICK HERE.
The Brewarrina community has championed an action to remove the Ngemba Community Working Party and Murdi Paaki Regional Assembly from our region. This action is supported by the LALC as we work towards stronger community outcomes. To see our facebook post which, based on the number of shares, had a significant reach CLICK HERE.
Brewarrina LALC teamed up with 'Healthabitat' to address urgent health related repairs to local social housing properties. A big thanks to our team who worked with professionalism in near 50 degree heat. Special thanks goes to the Healthabitat team who demonstrated respectful consultation, community inclusion and employed local contractors. CLICK HERE
Brewarrina LALC looks towards a future with Biodiversity conservation playing an important role within our model. Directors Ted Gordon and Cecil Smith recently took the BCT team on a tour of some of our lands. Connecting with key stakeholders in the conservation space has become a LALC priority. To see our facebook post with more information CLICK HERE.
The recent drought raised a lot of concerns about water in Brewarrina. You may recall the LALC teaming up with Dignity Water, Lanz Preistly and Roy Butler MP to bring fresh drinking water to Bre back in January. This time the LALC have teamed up with Steve Prodanovski and the AHO Hydropanel Project to bring. . . CLICK HERE TO READ ON
Brewarrina LALC has rented our office from the local council for nearly a decade. 2021 has been stamped as a time for change as the LALC secures a contract to purchase our new office to be located at 105 Bathurst Street. Stay tuned as we plan a new direction and a big year. We plan to move by January. To read the full article CLICK HERE.
Brewarrina LALC is committed to the pursuit of transparency, sound governance and accountability. We are pleased to have received a 100% result in our recent NSWALC audit and are committed to culture that places financial accountability at the highest levels. We look forward to teaming up with TAFE as we develop community strengths in this space.
Stage 2 of the Brewarrina Mission Restoration Poject is underway as a team of local undergo a clean of Mission land. The next phase of the project will see fencing to protect the land from stock, paving to assign walking areas and signage to ensure visitors don't disrupt sensitive areas. To see our facebook post with more information CLICK HERE.