The arrival of COVID-19 in Australia posed a serious risk for families in West Arnhem Land. Within a short period of time, all West Arnhem communities became closed to all non-essential travel.
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Maranguka is a key gateway, both for community members and for service providers. Maranguka was identified by the Local Emergency Management Committee as the key communication pathway to the Bourke Aboriginal community and have been invited to all key NSW Health meetings.
With the arrival of COVID-19, it quickly became apparent to Logan Together that there were urgent needs to be met in the community and that new partnerships and responses would be required.
When the COVID-19 pandemic was declared and Australia began to implement health measures such as social distancing and the closure of schools, the HUM team asked themselves whether their current work was the most important thing their community needed right now.
Dusseldorp Forum is one of a group of foundations pooling resources to assist First Nations organisations to respond to the current pandemic. Aboriginal community-controlled and governed organisations are most effectively able to articulate the needs on behalf of their communities.
During the COVID-19 crisis Maranguka’s infrastructure, capable of bringing together community, government, and local services to quickly and effectively reach the most vulnerable has wrapped around elders, families, and young people to keep them safe, informed, and connected.
Warddeken Land Management and the Kabulwarnamyo community’s proactive response to the pandemic has protecting elders while learning for children at Nawarddeken Academy and essential fire and land management work continues.
This year Dusseldorp Forum welcomed a new Board Member Charlee-Sue Frail. Charlee-Sue came to know the Forum through her mentor Cath Brokenborough, Executive Lead Indigenous Engagement at Lendlease and their work together on Lendlease’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
It was 1997 and Tjerk Dusseldorp was standing on the station in St Gallen Switzerland when he noticed a young man dressed in his Australian uniform, a medal around his neck. He was 22-year-old Grant Stewart, a plumber from Wollongong NSW and the day before he’d competed in the WorldSkills International competition.
To celebrate our 30th anniversary, we have commissioned a series of interviews which feature the diversity of people and projects the Forum has engaged with and the impact of the Forum’s work over the past 30 years.