The Programs

The Shire of Halls Creek, through the Olabud Doogethu Project, has employed a team of Youth Engagement Night Officers to provide monitoring and safety for Halls Creek youth and community members during the late evening and early morning hours.

The team is sourced from respected members of the local community. The team works during the hours of 9 pm – 4 am nightly and walks the main business district of Halls Creek, engaging youth who may be on the streets during these hours. The Officers aim towards redirecting youth to a safe environment and then home whilst having conversations with the youth around the reasoning behind their street presence. In this way, Youth Engagement Night Officers can identify every child on the streets late into the night.

The Olabud Doogethu Project advocates for the empowerment of the familial structure as a means to provide positive solutions for youth issues such as street presence at night, youth offending and establishing positive peer influences. The Olabud Doogethu program employs a team of Youth Engagement Day Officers to ensure this empowerment can be achieved. Youth Engagement Day Officers work in collaboration with the Night Officers to identify those individuals whose night presence and anti-social street behaviour fall into a critical category.

Olabud Doogethu [OD] Intensive Case Management [ICM] is under the umbrella of the Shire of Halls Creek and hosts a unique service for ‘youth at risk’ who have been referred to this program from supporting agencies such as the Department of Child Protection and Family Support. Youth are engaged in the program through a series of pro-social activities aimed at redirecting adverse behaviors and providing young people with an alternative to negative personal environments. Services deliver brokerage and case management and include assessment, referral, care planning and casework to address the income, health, mental health, social support, housing, justice, education, employment and training needs of engaged young clients.

To create a viable pathway to employment and through a partnership with North Regional TAFE, the Olabud Doogethu Project and Kimberley Group Training, the Shire of Halls Creek is offering up to ten youth traineeships per annum. These traineeships are designed to provide comprehensive skill-sets, relevant work experience and a recognised qualification for Halls Creek Aboriginal school leavers.

The Certificate II in Cultural Knowledges is being developed in response to an extensive community consultation project, focused on improving outcomes for young Aboriginal people in the Halls Creek Township and remote communities. The development of the qualification is a key outcome area for the Olabud Doogethu Project.

The Certificate II in Cultural Knowledges is to support Aboriginal students, who have been marginalized or disadvantaged by mainstream education and training, to explore the knowledge and skills required to participate in ‘two way’/’both way’ learning.

This program is only for student who have been identified by Aboriginal Elders and Leaders as high risk. The priority is for secondary school students (aged 14-17 years) to re-engage in their Halls Creek District High School activities. However, we recognise that this can be challenging for age groups above sixteen. Our secondary focus is for students to engage in a vocational training pathway on completion of the program.

It is designed to assist students in developing personal confidence and empowerment, by strengthening their understanding and knowledge of culture, and to explore the impact it has on their learning. It enables students to recognise and develop the skills and abilities needed to participate in future mainstream education and training. It also enables students to explore and develop their identity, to strengthen personal and community connections.

The Olabud Doogethu Project employs a team of Youth Engagement Officers in the remote communities of Mulan, Ringer Soak and Billiluna. This team is comprised of local Indigenous staff with knowledge of their community. The role of the Youth Engagement Worker is to provide recreational leisure activities to the youth demographic within their specific community.

Garnduwa, the Shire of Halls Creek and the Olabud Doogethu Project are entering into a Memorandum of Understanding [MOU] to ensure an ongoing commitment to youth recreation in Halls Creek through the continued service provision of a youth facility and providing local employment options to deliver regular sport and recreational activities in Halls Creek township.

The Shire of Halls Creek’s Olabud Doogethu program is directly responding to the need for culturally based learning in Halls Creek and its satellite remote communities through the employment of a place-based Learning on Country Coordinators (LoC). The LoC team are employed from the local Aboriginal communities through a process that includes consulting fellow community members on who the correct person for the role may be.

The role includes the creation and implementation of culturally based activities specific to the location and language group in which the Coordinator is employed. These activities may include, but are not limited to, bush skills, art, dance, traditions and camping.

The objective of this project is to develop a comprehensive Early Years Strategy that is place based and community led for the Outer Halls Creek and the Tjurabalan communities (Balgo, Billiluna, Mulan & Ringer Soak). The strategy will support the integration of early childhood, maternal health and child health, family support services with schools in an approach similar to the Australian Governments Connected Beginnings program.

The ultimate aim of the strategy is for all children to be school ready and transition successfully into school environment equipped for formal learning.

The initiatives will:

  • Support community to co-develop the appropriate range of early childhood education and parenting support initiatives
  • Provide outreach and support so more Aboriginal families are involved in early childhood services;
  • Increase and improve participation in early childhood, education and health services so that Aboriginal families have a place in their community for these services; and

Improve sharing of information, so families only tell their story once, in a culturally aligned way.

International law establishes the basis of what our communities know in their hearts. They deserve better as citizens of this land. They have the right to better treatment and better services, better outcomes. But support is needed to set out on the journey. They are not going to waste any more time waiting.

The funding spent on the community’s behalf isn’t delivering, so why spend it? The practices in the past have not empowered people to take charge of their own lives, so why keep doing them? The lack of Aboriginal controlled programs ignoring their expertise and delivery methods results in deteriorating educational, social and structural outcomes to the point where they happily walk away, and who wouldn’t? On their country, in their culture, they are tired of being asked, only to be ignored. The Shire and Olabud Doogethu project will flip that. We will be putting our energy and resources into residents achieving self-determination and self-actualisation in all matters affecting their lives, whatever form that may be.