Recording of the multilingual PBCmob app.

The largest gathering of native title holder corporation members in Central Australia will this week launch a new phone app in six local languages.

The Prescribed Bodies Corporate Regional Forum, better known as PBC Camp, is a biennial event aimed at strengthening the capacity of members and directors to run more than 30 corporations in the Central Land Council’s region.

Between 100 and 150 participants will today kick off the camp at the Yipirinya School in Alice Springs, where it had to be relocated due to rain.

Tomorrow morning at 10:45am CLC chief executive Les Turner will launch the multilingual PBCmob app, a new tool tackling the literacy and language barriers to understanding one of Australia’s most complex pieces of legislation, the Native Title Act.

“Knowledge is power, and the app promises to return power where it belongs – with the native title holders,” Mr Turner said.

“It will help them cut through the legalese when they negotiate about developments such as mining and horticulture on cattle stations and manage land use agreements.”

“Native title holders in remote communities have poor access to computers and the internet and often limited digital literacy, but many use mobile phones,” said Mr Turner.

“Our highly visual app is simple and easy to navigate and, most importantly, it speaks their languages.”

It explains native title concepts in Arrernte, Alyawarr, Kaytetye, Pitjantjatjara, Warlpiri and Warumungu, and compares them with land rights.
“Native title rights and land rights are very different, yet people often confuse them,” the CLC’s manager of native title, Francine McCarthy, said. “The PBCmob app aims to clear up that confusion.”

“It will also be useful for all the agencies the members and directors of native title corporations deal with, from the National Indigenous Australians Agency to Indigenous Business Australia.”

The app was funded by the Aboriginals Benefit Account and is based on the CLC’s publication Native Title Story.

Ms McCarthy is sourcing additional funding so the CLC can add more languages to the app and also make it available on PC and Mac computers.

The three-day PBC Camp program also includes an information session and discussion about the voice to parliament.

Download the Media Release

Media Contact : Elke Wiesmann | 0417 877 579|