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ILSC jobs program another wild success in 2022-23

David Prestipino -

Almost 450 Indigenous people have secured jobs and employment training through an Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation program that continues to thrive in the Top End.

The milestone was this week celebrated by the ILSC and welcomed by Kenisha Winunguj, a young Indigenous woman and one of the many participants in the corporation's Real Jobs Program, a proven gateway to employment for First Nations people in the Northern Territory across agribusiness, tourism, land management and conservation since 2007.

Ms Winunguj recently began working as a Miyalk Ranger for Yirralka Miyalk, a bush product program launched in 2011 with the support of the RJP and now run by the Laynhapuy Homelands Aboriginal Corporation.

The Yirralka Rangers manage the Laynhapuy Indigenous Protected Area, an area spanning some 17,000km2, including 6,500km2 of sea country and 800km of coastline.

The Yirralka Miyalk program allows female (Miyalk) rangers to practice Yolŋu healing methods, using local native flora in a variety of personal care products, such as bush scrubs, soaps and oils.

"I started working at Yirralka Miyalks early this year because I wanted to learn more about Yolŋu medicine and to help treat people with it," Ms Winunguj said.

"This work is my passion and is something I really wanted to do after graduating back in 2020."

Yirralka Miyalks helps Yolŋu Rangers live and work from their homelands and preserve their connection to their culture through Yolŋu healing.

ILSC Group chief executive Joe Morrison said Kenisha's story demonstrated the significance and success of the RJP and the vast training and workforce opportunities it has given Indigenous people since launching 16 years ago.

"Kenisha's journey is inspiring and it's stories like hers that drive the ILSC to support First Nations peoples on their journey to self-determination," Mr Morrison said.

"I congratulate Kenisha and all other participants who worked hard to take part in the Real Jobs Program and strengthen their personal and professional capabilities."

Mr Morrison said the RJP also provided cultural, economic, and environmental benefits, as well as helping unemployed Indigenous people enter the workforce, and would continue to operate across the NT in the 2023-24 financial year.

"Our objective is to employ and train Indigenous people, and to build individual capacity to take up employment outside the RJP," he said.

ILSC's 2022-2023 RJP helped 239 Indigenous people find jobs, while training and educating a further 202 participants through various sessions, workshops and activities.


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