Land Rights News Central Australia: Land Rights News (August 2012)

Published: August, 2012

Royalties fund old peoples home

Yapa community is continually taking care of the elderly with GMAAAC support.

The Yapa led Yuendumu Old Peoples Program (YOPP) began as Meals on Wheels and Community Care programs over a decade ago and now thrives with continuing community investment from mining royalties.

Over a decade has passed since Yapa community residents in Yuendumu started providing their own Aged Care services in the community and the community led theme has continued with the Granites Mine Affected Areas Aboriginal Corporation (GMAAAC) Project which supports community based committees using their ‘affected area’ monies flowing from mining for community benefit projects.

On Site manager, Julie Harvey applauded the GMAAAC investments and said it runs with how the centre operates.

“Needs were identified by the local people, built by the local people and still run by the local people.”

In the past few years the centre has been funded for the painting of the interior and exterior of the building, for the landscaping of the grounds, bathroom tiles, boiling water unit and for a Hilux Ute.

In 2008, GMAAAC funded the centre a ten seater bus with wheelchair lifter, washing machine, fridge and freezer.

The latest GMAAAC supported project was to renovate the End Stage wing of the centre.

“There used to be a little tiny veranda all the way along, no glass, no cooling or heating, very unusable,” Ms Harvey said.

“It makes a massive difference.

 “We had a situation here last year where there was someone already in for end of life and we didn’t have the space for another patient so they weren’t able to stay here.

 “We had a cold, little room with 30-40 people visiting their sick family member. Some family had to stay in other rooms or outside but now they can all be together.

“So GMAAAC funded us and we took the whole roofline out but didn’t want to spoil the look of the building, it’s quite historic.

“People normally like to see what’s going on so now they have light and windows all the way around.”

GMAAAC funded most of the renovations as part of an ongoing commitment to the service.