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Land Rights News Central Australia: Land Rights News (September 2010)

Published: September, 2010

Desert People’s Centre opens in Alice Springs

Opened in late May, the $18.8 million centre is designed to improve vocational education and training for students in Central Australia.

The NT Government contributed $10.4 million and the Federal Government $8.4 million to the cost of the centre, which is based at the Desert Knowledge Precinct south of Alice Springs.

Five buildings are included in the centre, providing access to industry-standard equipment and facilities.
The Northern Territory’s Minister for Central Australia Karl Hampton said the centre will help improve employment opportunities for Aboriginal people.

“The Desert People’s Centre is a partnership between two organisations, the Centre for Appropriate Technology and Batchelor Institute, with wide experience in providing training, education and development opportunities for Indigenous Australians,” Mr Hampton said.

“These new facilities will improve students’ skills, help grow our local workforce in Central Australia and provide more economic opportunities for people living in remote areas,” he said.

The Federal Minister for Indigenous Health, Rural and Regional Health and Regional Services Delivery Warren Snowdon said the centre will help prepare Aboriginal people for entering the workforce.

“Students who complete training here will have access to use state-of-the-art equipment that’s being used by industry, giving them even more confidence to enter the job market,” Mr Snowdon said.

The Federal Minister for Education Julia Gillard also attended the opening. The cultural ceremony organised for the opening was hosted by local Arrernte traditional owner Marie-Louise Ellis with dancers from the Alyarrawa, Pitjantjatjara, Arrernte, Amatjere, Warlpiri and Pintubi language groups performing.