Photo caption: Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton (second from right), pictured with Gunnedah Shire Mayor Jamie Chaffey, Red Chief LALC board member Gwen Griffen and Chairperson Mitchum Neave at Red Chief LALC in Gunnedah where a Keeping Place will be established.
Tourists will be able to immerse themselves in Gunnedah’s rich Aboriginal heritage, with Red Chief Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC) receiving a $76,000 grant to create a Keeping Place to store and preserve local culture.
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said the funding has been provided through the first round of the Federal Government’s Indigenous Tourism Fund, designed to help Indigenous-owned tourism businesses and community organisations increase the number of Indigenous tourism products available and support the start-up, stabilisation or growth of operators in the sector.
“The Gunnedah region has a rich history and proud Indigenous heritage, and we want to showcase this to as many people as we can,” Mr Coulton said.
“Red Chief Local Aboriginal Land Council is well-placed to provide a professional and memorable experience that will leave people wanting to come back again and tell their friends about the wonderful culture on offer.
“This grant will allow Red Chief LALC to undertake minor capital works to upgrade its facilities into an art gallery and Keeping Place. The funding will be used for a curator to lead and build the exhibit, new display cabinetry and interactive displays for educational exhibits.”
Red Chief LALC Chairperson Mitchum Neave said this funding will provide a much-needed boost towards the refurbishment and renovation of its Keeping Place.
“In Gunnedah there is currently no Keeping Place and this grant helps us achieve our goal of building a safe place to store locally sourced artefacts which will help to preserve and protect our Aboriginal cultural and heritage,” Mr Neave said.
“A town that is rich in Aboriginal culture and heritage, we will now be able to tell our stories to visitors and the local community with a vibrant and welcoming Keeping Place.
“It is a boost not just for the Aboriginal community but to the local area.
“We are incredibly grateful to be a successful recipient of this grant.”
The Hon Ken Wyatt AM MP, Minister for Indigenous Australians, said that the Indigenous Tourism Fund is helping Indigenous-owned businesses and community organisations employ more people, expand their offerings and attract more visitors, which has positive flow-on effects for all parts of our local economy.
“These grants are part of the Morrison Government’s $40 million Indigenous Tourism Fund, with grants on offer for the next three years to grow Indigenous tourism businesses, improve their products and attract more visitors to regional and remote Australia,” Minister Wyatt said.
“I encourage everyone to take the opportunity and enjoy the enriching experiences that our local Indigenous tourism operators have to share.”
More information is available at https://www.niaa.gov.au/itf