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Empowered Communities in the East


In the East Kimberley, strong Indigenous leadership

and existing welfare reform initiatives—notably

transitional housing and the cashless debit card—

were the backdrop to Empowered Communities.

Coordinated by backbone organisation Binarri-Binyja

Yarrawoo Aboriginal Corporation, the region’s

12 opt-in organisations that have worked with

communities to agree on employment and education

as first priorities.

In line with first priorities, low rates of employment

and job readiness are being tackled through a

‘100 Jobs’ project in Kununurra and Wyndham. An

Empowered Communities and Western Australian

Government partnership for coordination of a $200m

North West Aboriginal Housing fund will provide

access to housing, accompanied by ‘wraparound’

services that support health, education, employment

and ultimately a pathway off welfare.

Binarri-Binyja Yarrawoo Aboriginal Corporation

is synthesising regional priorities around housing,

employment, education and community safety in a

development agenda for the East Kimberley. Based

on strong evidence, this will be used to support

decision-making with government on funding

and programming.

Empowered Communities leader (and CEO of

Kununurra Waringarri Aboriginal Corporation)

Desmond Hill is excited by the collaboration


It’s been the best collaboration we’ve had here

to date, and we want to use the success of that

to encourage de-siloing in government too. If we

can do it, anyone can do it.

Over 30 Jawun secondees have supported

Empowered Communities in East Kimberley

. 44

Cedric Cox, East Kimberley Job Pathways.

Photo: Frederic Courbet