Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen Indigenous business sector

UOW, NSW Aboriginal Land Council join forces in Sydney’s West

Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen Indigenous business sector

The University of Wollongong (UOW) and the NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Wednesday, 18 September.

What unites UOW and NSWALC is a strong presence in Sydney’s West and a shared vision for a prosperous, vibrant and sustainable Indigenous business sector.

The NSW Aboriginal Land Council has partnered with the Federal Government to deliver the Yarpa NSW Indigenous Business and Employment Hub (Yarpa Hub), a holistic support service for Indigenous businesses and jobseekers based in Western Sydney.

UOW, through its South Western Sydney Campus in Liverpool, will work with the Yarpa Hub to build research capacity across the Indigenous business sector and improve economic, social and cultural outcomes for Indigenous Peoples in NSW.

The MOU solidifies UOW’s commitment to improving participation in higher education for Australia’s Indigenous people. A partnership with the Yarpa Hub will improve pathways from University to employment for students.

UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Health and Communities) Alison Jones and NSW Aboriginal Land Council CEO James Christian signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Wednesday.

Alison Jones and James Christian at UOW’s South Western Sydney Campus on Wednesday.

Professor Jones firstly acknowledged the importance of reconciliation and respect for Aboriginal peoples and her deep commitment to working in partnership to improve educational and health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“We hope by improving the participation rate in higher education, we can begin to close the gap when it comes to unemployment and help support aspirations,” Professor Jones said.

“We believe an enabling approach working with Aboriginal leadership and effective partnerships are key to achieving real change.

“A partnership with Yarpa significantly enhances positive impact on employability outcomes for Indigenous students.”

UOW Pro Vice-Chancellor (South Western Sydney) and Dean of Law Professor Colin Picker says he’s looking forwards to seeing the MOU principles enacted.

NSW ALC CEO James Christian recognised the importance of the partnership with an Institute which has been leading the way in the promotion and research of Aboriginal learning systems.

“This is the start of a journey,” Mr Christian said.

“It’s not just, we sign this and the job’s done…it’s very much a case of working together.

“I’m sure we will deliver future benefits because of the strong values alignment with the University of Wollongong.”

UOW Pro Vice-Chancellor Paul Chandler (Inclusion, Outreach) in Liverpool on Wednesday.

The MOU sets parameters for engagement, discussion and collaboration between UOW and NSW Aboriginal Land Council.

An executive from UOW and NSWALC will meet quarterly to discuss strategy and the direction of plans.

Working groups will be established to prioritise key issues of mutual interest in relation to the hub, and identify and prioritise tasks and actions required to design and deliver the hub.

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