Traditional owners rediscovered the Ngatunitja and its waterhole during a helicopter search in 2012. Frankie Moneymoon is holding up the first kapi (water) since the 1930s while Malya Teamay, Craig Woods, Henry Norman and Timo Connick are watching.

The Uluru rent money project started in 2005, when the traditional owners of the Uluru—Kata Tjuta National Park began investing in community benefit initiatives some of the rent they receive from leasing the park to the commonwealth and a cut of park visitor entry fees.

In a wide range of ways, this has benefitted Mutitjulu, Kaltukatjara (Docker River), Utju (Areyonga) and Imanpa in the Northern Territory, as well as Pukatja (Ernabella), Amata and Yunjarinyi (Kenmore Park) in South Australia’s Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands. 

Through this formative project, traditional owners planned and contributed to the construction of the Mutitjulu Tjurpinytjaku (swimming pool) Centre and have funded its operation since 2014, heralding well documented child health benefits in particular. 

They have upgraded essential community and outstation infrastructure and implemented education initiatives. Support has gone to boarding school students and bilingual resources, as well as funerals, renal dialysis and cultural maintenance.

Between 2005 and 2021 the traditional owners invested more than $17 million in 123 separate community development measures.

The traditional owners of the national park and the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yangkunytjatjara Women’s Council jointly won an award for for their boarding school project in 2021. The award for excellence in Aboriginal education and boarding leadership recognises those who challenge common practice and make a difference to the lives of Aboriginal boarders.