The ABA Homelands Project (the Project) invests more than $50 million to improve living conditions in homelands (or outstations) across the Northern Territory. The Project has grown out of the ABA Advisory Committee’s Investing in Country and Culture proposal.
The Project is a community-driven one-off infrastructure investment in selected homelands, with homelands residents identifying areas of priority need. The Project dovetails with other sources of assistance to homelands, such as the Northern Territory Government’s Municipal and Essential Services (MES) program, so that the investment is not duplicated. Delivery is in three stages:
- Stage 1. Consultation: the four Northern Territory Land Councils identify homelands for participation in the Project and consult with homelands residents to identify priorities for potential support. Land councils have submitted proposals for each participating homeland. This stage has now concluded.
- Stage 2. Assessment: each proposal is considered by the ABA Advisory Committee, which makes a recommendation to the Minister on activities proposed for each homeland. The Minister approves which activities are to be supported for delivery. This stage has now concluded.
- Stage 3. Delivery: The NIAA approaches local services providers to submit funding applications to deliver the approved activities. The preference is for Indigenous-owned providers who have experience delivering essential services to the homelands. Each application is formally assessed by the NIAA and works undertaken once funding agreements are in place.
Consultations and Proposals
Land councils have completed consultations with homelands residents and submitted a proposal for each homeland. The ABA Advisory Committee has considered each proposal and made recommendations to the Minister. Proposals for 184 homelands have been approved to proceed. This is all homelands considered for the Project.
The NIAA approaches services providers to submit applications to deliver the approved proposals. Applications are assessed according to the NIAA grant funding process. A grant funding agreement is then negotiated with successful applicants, allowing funding to be released for the delivery of infrastructure and assets.
Some examples of what will be covered
- New and upgraded essential services infrastructure (electricity, water, sewerage).
- Upgrades and repairs to roads, bridges, etc.
- New or upgraded radio and mobile phone infrastructure.
- New or upgraded communal buildings.
- Training for the use and maintenance of infrastructure that has been delivered under the Project.
Some examples of what will not be covered
- Creation of new homelands.
- New housing or house upgrades/repairs.
- Vehicles and machinery for personal use.
Homelands approved for the delivery of works
The Minister has approved proposals for six homelands in the Tiwi Land Council (TLC) region, six in the Anindilyakwa Land Council (ALC) region, 104 in the Central Land Council (CLC) region, and 68 in the Northern Land Council (NLC) region. No further homelands are awaiting decision.
Regional councils and essential services providers have been approached by NIAA to submit funding applications to scope and deliver the approved proposals.
To learn more about the ABA Homelands Project call 1800 354 612 or email ABAHomelands@official.niaa.gov.au.