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Culture, Art and Heritage

REGIONAL GOAL

Protect, promote, revitalise and maintain Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal traditions and cultural heritage.

PROGRAMME GOALS

The Culture, Art and Heritage Programme goals are:

  • strong, supported and respected Ailan Kastom
  • active and sustainable arts and craft industry.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Culture, Art and Heritage Programme aims to:

  • protect culturally significant sites and artefacts to ensure longevity
  • revitalise and maintain traditional cultural practices (art, dance, language, storytelling, songs) among communities
  • ensure the protection of traditional knowledge, intellectual property and copyright
  • underpin services and management practices with cultural values and protocols.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Increased income generated through retail sales via the Gab Titui Cultural Centre and established art centres in the region.
  • Increase in profile of emerging and established artists and cultural practitioners in the region and the production and sale of regionally produced arts and crafts.
  • Increased number of TSRA funded and supported activities that are based on Torres Strait Islander (Ailan Kastom) and Aboriginal cultural traditions in the Torres Strait region.
  • Increase in cultural heritage material and information specific to each community in the region that is documented, registered and accessible.
  • Increase in the number of emerging and professionally active artists and cultural practitioners that have access to information and support to ensure copyright and intellectual property rights.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016 (INCLUDES EXTERNAL FUNDING)

Table 2-14: Culture, Art and Heritage Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

BUDGET
$’000
ACTUAL
$’000
VARIANCE
$’000
4,813 4,660 153

PROGRAMME EXTERNAL FUNDING EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-15: Culture, Art and Heritage Programme external funding expenditure, 2015-2016

BUDGET
$’000
ACTUAL
$’000
VARIANCE
$’000
519 108 411

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • An active and sustainable arts and craft industry.
  • Cultural values and protocols are integrated into service planning and management practices.
  • The unique cultural heritage and histories of the region are preserved, maintained and promoted.
  • A strong, supported and respected Ailan Kastom.
  • The copyright, intellectual property and traditional knowledge of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region are protected.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Gab Titui Cultural Centre Indigenous Art Award This exhibition is a major annual event in the Gab Titui calendar. The 2016 event opened on 16 June 2016 and there were 35 entries from across the region. Over 400 people attended and $16,500 in prizes was awarded. Most works were sold on the opening night, with some purchased and collected for display by national institutions. See the next table for further information on the achievements of the Gab Titui Cultural Centre in terms of sales and support to the regional arts sector and the TSRA culture, art and heritage community grants.
Gab Titui Cultural Centre touring exhibitions The Evolution: Torres Strait Masks exhibition was recognised by the National Museum of Australia as being a culturally significant collection of works. Negotiations are in progress to tour the exhibition to Canberra in early 2017 and then nationally.
Arts development programme Three art centres in the region are supported through this programme. Operational funding is provided as part of a partnership between the Australian Government Ministry for the Arts, Arts Queensland and the TSRA. Support in governance, leadership and arts administration is also provided to the art centres. Arts skills workshops were delivered in 12 communities in 2015-2016. Established and emerging artists were able to develop their skills in painting, print-making, screen painting, 3D design, weaving and carving. Two masterclass workshops were also held covering areas of traditional comb-making on Masig and headdress-making on Boigu. In 2015-2016 funding provided by the Ministry for the Arts to support arts development in the Torres Strait region was decreased. This has resulted in a reduction in resources to the sector and a temporary decrease in activity until additional funding is secured.
Cultural maintenance programme The cultural maintenance programme covers the grants programme, the cultural maintenance exhibition programme in the Gab Titui Cultural Centre and the management of all relevant cultural projects. There were two additional cultural maintenance projects in 2015 that also directly contributed to the dance strategy project: the presentation of a Torres Strait dance team at the Torres Strait Treaty 30th Anniversary, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; and another performance supported by the Culture, Art and Heritage Programme at the National Native Title Conference, Port Douglas.
Cultural Policy implementation and protocols The Culture, Art and Heritage Programme guides the use of the TSRA Cultural Policy and the accompanying Cultural Protocols: A Guide for TSRA Staff. The TSRA is seeking further collaboration across government and other agency stakeholders in the region during 2016-2017 to adopt cultural protocols and practices by strengthening awareness, particularly for new staff and visitors to the region.
Dance strategy The Torres Strait dance strategy promotes and supports the performance of Torres Strait dance at high-profile national and international events. In 2015 dance teams were selected through an application and assessment process to perform at the 2016 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, and financial support was given to Torres Strait representation at the Pacific Festival of the Arts in Guam in 2016.
Torres Strait language strategy The Culture, Art and Heritage Programme facilitated and funded the development of the recently endorsed Torres Strait Traditional Languages Plan 2016-2017 and the Torres Strait Traditional Languages Charter, a product of the Torres Strait Language Reference Group. The TSRA, in partnership with the Ministry for the Arts, and Tagai State College are in the process of establishing a Torres Strait Indigenous language centre. Culture, art and heritage grants also assist communities to undertake language projects annually through a $50,000 fund.
Music strategy – Music and Dance Audit The Music and Dance Audit has been an ongoing project since 2007. CD and DVD productions of Torres Strait dance and music have been completed for 14 communities. Recordings for the communities of Masig and Kubin (Moa Island) are nearing completion. Recordings for the project in Northern Peninsula Area communities are underway and will be completed in late 2016.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

Indicator Flag Status
Increased income generated through retail sales via the Gab Titui Cultural Centre and established art centres in the region The Gab Titui Cultural Centre supports between 70 and 120 local artists to promote and sell their work. In 2015-2016 Gab Titui returned a total of $231,795 to local artists and suppliers, a significant increase on the previous year’s sales and income. Gab Titui and the arts development programme are supporting an increase in Torres Strait artists’ earnings through the development of new products using Torres Strait designs.
Increased number of TSRA funded and supported activities that are based on Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal cultural traditions in the Torres Strait region The grants programme supported 18 applications over two grant rounds in 2015-2016. These grants support and encourage the development, promotion and maintenance of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal art and culture in the region. Projects funded in this period included CD recordings of contemporary music, development of dance teams, cultural programmes for children, and assistance to art centres to exhibit overseas. This represents a decrease on the previous year, which is due to the number of grant funding applications received in the reporting period.
Increase in cultural heritage material and information specific to each community in the region that is documented, registered and accessible The Culture, Art and Heritage Programme continued to liaise with the Environmental Management Programme to strengthen links in cultural heritage, particularly with projects such as the traditional ecological knowledge database project. Community-driven cultural heritage projects were also supported through the grants programme – funding for which increased by 50 per cent compared to funding in 2014-2015.
Increase in the number of emerging and professionally active artists and cultural practitioners who have access to information and support to ensure copyright and intellectual property rights The 2016 Artists’ Forum: Copyright, Education and Support, presented by the Culture, Art and Heritage Programme, was held on 11-13 April 2016. The forum was attended by 80 artists and cultural specialists from throughout the region and provided information on individual and communal copyright and intellectual property rights. Attendance at the 2016 forum exceeded attendance in 2015.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of Mr Aven Noah, TSRA Portfolio Member For Culture, Art And Heritage, Addressing The Participants At The 2016 Artists' Forum

MR AVEN NOAH, TSRA PORTFOLIO MEMBER FOR CULTURE, ART AND HERITAGE, ADDRESSING THE PARTICIPANTS AT THE 2016 ARTISTS' FORUM.

CASE STUDY

2016 Artists’ Forum: Copyright, Education and Support
Presented by the Culture, Art and Heritage Programme, 11-13 April 2016

The topic for the 2016 Artists’ Forum was ‘Copyright, Education and Support’. The forum was run over three days to an audience of 80 artists and cultural practitioners from the region. The main aim was the delivery of information and workshops on the issues associated with copyright across all aspects of the arts, including intellectual copyright and the licensing of designs for commercial product sales.

The programme included 15 speakers who delivered vital information on the arts industry, government programmes, and commercial opportunities for artists and practitioners working across a variety of art forms. Recommendations were sought from the participants after each session which will be drawn on and incorporated into the Culture, Art and Heritage programming for 2016-2017.

Included among the speakers was Lee-Ann Tjunypa Buckskin, Board Director, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts, Australia Council for the Arts. In her presentation, ‘Setting the Scene’, she expressed the need to embed respect for Indigenous copyright and cultural issues and talked about how to acknowledge the Indigenous foundational values of sharing and reciprocity within a legal framework.

Terri Janke of Terri Janke Lawyers and Consultants, an Indigenous legal firm, presented ‘Intellectual Property Rights’. Terri provided a stimulating and insightful presentation on copyright issues identifying that First Nation peoples across the globe face the same issues of recognition and protection of cultural and intellectual property rights. She identified the disconnect between traditional ways of managing cultural knowledge and Australia’s imported legal system, which does not protect communal rights or shared knowledge systems.

Jasmin Herro, Chief Executive Officer, JHerro Pty Ltd, an Indigenous businesswoman, social entrepreneur, designer and global disruptor, presented on the opportunities that are offered through commercial licensing of designs and products on the international market. She pointed out the pitfalls and challenges of the licensing world while also presenting the commercial benefits.

Presentations were also made by Trisha Adjei, Indigenous Engagement Manager, Copyright Agency, Viscopy; Michael Hutchings, Indigenous Representative, Australasian Performing Right Association; Robyn Ayres, Executive Director, Arts Law Centre of Australia; and Jacqueline Cornforth, Coordinator, Artists in the Black (Arts Law Centre of Australia).

Economic Development

REGIONAL GOAL

Enhance our region’s wealth by creating sustainable industries and increasing employment opportunities for our people equivalent to the wider Australian community.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The Economic Development Programme goal is:

  • to contribute to regional, community and individual economic improvement by taking the lead as whole of region economic development solution broker.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Economic Development Programme aims to:

  • stimulate economic development across the region
  • advance business skills and align training initiatives with regional employment opportunities
  • advance Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal ownership and management of businesses in the region.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Increased capability of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region to manage commercially viable businesses.
  • Improved access to capital and other opportunities to finance commercially viable businesses.
  • Increased number of commercially viable businesses owned and/or operated by Torres Strait and Aboriginal people in the region.
  • Improved wealth of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-16: Economic Development Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

BUDGET
$’000
ACTUAL
$’000
VARIANCE
$’000
11,196 11,326 (130)

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Increased capability of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region to manage commercially viable businesses.
  • Improved access to capital and other opportunities to finance commercially viable businesses.
  • Increased number of commercially viable businesses owned or operated by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region.
  • Improved wealth of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in the region.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Business mentoring support Business mentoring support was provided to two clients in 2015-2016 to assist with organisational capacity building. The TSRA will be undertaking promotional activities in 2016-2017 to inform stakeholders of the benefits of the business support standing panel. Four enterprises were supported to attend the Indigenous Economic Development Conference. One client was supported to attend the Tendering for Government Workshop.
Business funding support One loan application was approved.
Community Development Programme agreement management In July 2015 there were 1,217 Community Development Programme (CDP) participants; 350 participants transitioned into paid employment during 2015-2016. Region 59 is one of the highest performing CDP regions in Australia. This is due to a number of factors, including the productive working relationship between the TSRA and the CDP provider, My Pathway. As a government statutory body with an elected board and separate administrative arm, located within the region, the TSRA is in a unique position to provide guidance to the provider on the priorities of communities and employment opportunities and challenges. For example, Region 59 now has 20 hosted placements available for job seekers to gain real workplace experience and build transferrable skills.
Economic Development Investment Strategy Development of the Torres Strait Regional Economic Investment Strategy (REIS) to identify sustainable industries and opportunities for commercially viable business development was completed in 2015-2016. The REIS is strategic, informed and targeted. Grounded in extensive research, consultation and analysis, the REIS enables the TSRA to proactively identify and approach individuals or organisations with strong prospects to establish or grow existing businesses.
Into Business Workshops Two series of Into Business Workshops were delivered (comprising workshops A, B and C); 79 participants completed the workshop series.
Torres Strait Maritime Pathways Project 30 participants have completed:
  • Short Range Operator Certificate of Proficiency
  • Shipboard Safety Skill Set
  • First Aid
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Coxswain Grade 2 Near Coastal)
29 participants have completed:
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal)
22 participants have completed:
  • Certificate III in Fishing Operations (including wild harvest dive qualifications)
6 participants have completed:
  • Certificate III in Maritime Operations (Master up to 24 Metres Near Coastal)
12 participants have completed:
  • Certificate of Safety Training.
Growing Our Own Maritime Stream 13 participants have completed:
  • Shipboard Safety Skill Set
  • First Aid
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Coxswain Grade 2 Near Coastal)
30 participants have commenced:
  • Shipboard Safety Skill Set
  • First Aid
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Coxswain Grade 2 Near Coastal)
15 participants have commenced:
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Coxswain Grade 2 Near Coastal)
11 participants have commenced:
  • Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal)
15 participants have commenced:
  • General Purpose Hand.
Home Ownership Programme One home loan was approved in 2015-2016. Complex land tenure arrangements in the Torres Strait continue to make it difficult for loan applicants to provide appropriate security for loans in Deed of Grant in Trust and reserve communities.
Employment and training projects In partnership with My Pathway and the Torres Strait Youth and Recreational Sporting Association, an employment and training project was conducted involving the renovation of the Thursday Island Boat Club; 19 job seekers obtained employment from this project.
Tourism Torres Shire Council and the Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council were funded for event management positions. The funding was provided for three years to allow for employment certainty and longer term planning.
Website redesign The Economic Development Programme area of the TSRA website was redesigned to be more client-focused and deliver a personalised user experience. The website now includes an online product selector tool and updated information on a range of products, services and business information.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
An increase in the number of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people in employment In 2015-2016, 350 CDP participants moved from welfare into employment. Of these, 214 participants met employment outcome milestones:
  • 13-week outcome – 149 participants
  • 26-week outcome – 65 participants.
Job placements were in the following industries:
  • Government – 27
  • Retail – 15
  • Employment services – 65
  • Education – 9
  • Other – 29
  • Hospitality – 2
  • Aged care – 8
  • Construction/labour – 42
  • Service – 13
  • Transport – 4.
While the numbers are a decrease compared to the previous reporting period, they confirm that CDP participants are being transitioned into job placements and employment.
Increase in the number of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal owned commercially viable businesses In 2015-2016, one business loan was approved to support a Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal business. In the same period, business mentoring and support was provided to two clients. The development of the Regional Economic Investment Strategy to provide targeted support to Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal owned commercially viable businesses is one of the reasons for the limited number of loan applicants.
Increased availability of approved business training In 2015-2016, the TSRA continued to provide face-to-face business training through the delivery of Into Business Workshops. In 2015-2016, a total of 79 participants attended Into Business Workshops. Post-course surveys indicate a very high level of participant satisfaction with the workshops. The attendance at the 2015-2016 workshops exceeded attendance in 2014-2015.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of job seekers installing the new roof

JOB SEEKERS INSTALLING THE NEW ROOF.

CASE STUDY

Thursday Island Boat Club Project: Matching Training to Employment

The Thursday Island Boat Club project demonstrates the TSRA’s commitment to economic development and wealth creation in the region. The project provided Community Development Programme job seekers with practical on-the-job development and training aligned to the needs of the local building industry.

The project commenced in December 2015 with 15 job seekers and was the result of a collaboration between the TSRA, My Pathway (the Community Development Programme service provider) and the Torres Strait Youth and Recreational Sporting Association.

The project included demolition work and creation of a new toilet block and a large storage shed for boats and other equipment. Renovation of the existing building included a new roof, a new outdoor deck area, a new commercial-grade kitchen, and new internal ceilings and floor coverings. Local builder Rob Clarke and his team provided essential on-the-job supervision and guidance throughout the renovation and associated building works.

The TSRA Chairperson, Mr Joseph Elu, said, ‘The works will bring the Boat Club back to its former glory and will provide a great venue for community events, particularly those focused on youth sport and recreational activities that are all located in the same sporting precinct’.

The President of the Torres Strait Youth and Recreational Sporting Association, Mr Alan Filewood, said, ‘The renovation of the club facilities has been an aspiration of the Association for a long time and the Association is very happy that a large proportion of the work will be completed by unemployed youth under the direction of skilled builders’.

a photograph of Gavin Bin Juda on the tools leading the way

GAVIN BIN JUDA ON THE TOOLS LEADING THE WAY.

Participation in the project enabled job seekers to work towards completion of a Certificate II in Construction Training.

Foreman Bob Clarke and his crew provided guidance and encouragement to job seekers by showing them how to undertake technical building tasks in a supportive training environment. The job seekers also developed a work ethic and learned about working in a team. My Pathway mentor Gavin Bin Juda said, ‘Working with Bob was good. We got a heap of boys employed which was my goal. Watching and learning about the little things was amazing. I always wondered, how do you do that? And now I know!’.

The project has been keenly watched by employers in the local building industry, who have approached the Boat Club to recruit suitably skilled people to work on other commercial building sites on Thursday Island. By using this project as a launching platform, 19 job seekers have gained full-time paid employment and successfully exited the Community Development Programme with a range of new skills, experience and qualifications. Positive feedback from employers and employees demonstrates the success of the project.

Due to the positive employment outcomes associated with this project, participation in the activity was in high demand by My Pathway job seekers, who were lining up to get involved.

Providing opportunities for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people to gain skills and qualifications sought by local employers means that the economic benefits are retained in the community.

Fisheries

REGIONAL GOAL

Enhance our region’s wealth, by managing and maintaining sustainable fishing industries and increasing employment and economic opportunities for our people.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The Fisheries Programme goal is:

  • to increase wealth in the region through commercially viable businesses and employment in the fishing industry, while ensuring the ecologically sustainable management of fishery resources.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Fisheries Programme aims to:

  • provide greater access for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people to the region’s commercial fisheries towards attaining a 100 per cent share
  • increase commercially viable businesses in the fishing industry that are Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal owned and/or operated
  • deliver initiatives to increase the capability and capacity of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people to utilise the region’s commercial fisheries resources
  • ensure that the region’s fisheries resources are sustainably managed
  • ensure that Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people are engaged in the management of the region’s fisheries resources.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

The programme deliverables are to achieve the outcomes from the Torres Strait Development Plan 2014-2018, which are:

  • A commercially viable fishing industry which is 100 per cent owned by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people.
  • Improved wealth of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people of the region.
  • Sustainable management of fisheries resources.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-17: Fisheries Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

BUDGET
$’000
ACTUAL
$’000
VARIANCE
$’000
1,600 1,515 85

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • A commercially viable fishing industry which is 100 per cent owned by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people.
  • Improved wealth of Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people of the region.
  • Sustainable management of fisheries resources.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Fisheries communications The TSRA Fisheries Programme conducted consultations with community fishers’ associations throughout the Torres Strait to review its communications model. The review found that most associations viewed targeted communications with fishers to be more effective.
Finfish capacity building The recommendations of the finfish action plan (developed in 2014-2015) are being implemented. Training programmes on principles of fisheries management and representational skills have been developed and delivered, with nine Torres Strait fisher representatives on Protected Zone Joint Authority (PZJA) committees participating. The training aims to assist them to more effectively participate in technical working groups, scientific advisory committees and resource assessment groups.
Finfish quota management Each year since 2008, the TSRA has leased licences in the finfish fishery to non-Indigenous fishers. The aim of leasing licences to non-Indigenous fishers is to maintain markets until the Traditional Inhabitant Boat (TIB) licence sector can increase its catch and meet market demand. The Fisheries Programme provides support to the TSRA Board and the Finfish Quota Management Committee to facilitate the leasing processes. In 2016, for the first time, the committee recommended the inclusion of mixed reef fish species in the licence leasing agreements. In the past, only coral trout and Spanish mackerel were leased, with mixed reef fish species being taken as by-product for free. TIB fishers have been concerned for some time that the by-product species were being taken as a free resource by non-Indigenous fishers. The inclusion of mixed reef fish species as a category in the leasing and licensing conditions has addressed this issue. The TSRA is working with the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) and the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries to determine a long-term sustainable total allowable catch for mixed reef fish.
Fisheries roadmap – towards 100 per cent ownership The TSRA has the lead on behalf of the PZJA for the development of the fisheries roadmap towards 100 per cent ownership of the commercial fisheries by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal Traditional Owners. In February 2016 the TSRA completed its round of public consultation on the draft roadmap. Comments received are being considered before a revised roadmap can be presented to the PZJA for endorsement. The release of an exposure draft of the PZJA’s tropical rock lobster management plan has raised awareness of the introduction of tradeable quota into a fishery which operates partially within Native Title waters. This release has seen Traditional Owners raise concerns over the allocation of fishing quota to non–Native Title holders. The TSRA and AFMA will continue community consultation and engagement with Traditional Owners on the management plan in 2016-2017 to resolve this issue.
Fisheries management framework The TSRA fisheries management framework project will inform community leaders and fisheries stakeholders on the New Zealand Maori model of fisheries ownership and management. In the longer term, completion of this project could see the formalisation of fishing boundaries between Torres Strait communities. While in the short to medium term the TSRA has been nominated to hold tradeable quota on behalf of Traditional Owners, the management framework project will identify future options for holding this quota. The project did not achieve all of its aims in 2015-2016 due to the deferral of visits to New Zealand fisheries as the TSRA Board entered its caretaker period leading into the 2016 TSRA Board election.
PZJA representation In 2015-2016 the TSRA participated in:
  • one PZJA meeting
  • two PZJA Standing Committee meetings
  • one Tropical Rock Lobster Resource Allocation Group meeting
  • one Torres Strait Prawn Management Advisory Committee meeting
  • one Hand Collectables Working Group meeting
  • one Scientific Advisory Committee meeting.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
Increase in catches by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal fishers relative to total allowable catch The TSRA delivers a number of initiatives aimed at increasing participation in fisheries. These include the development of an action plan for the finfish fishery, which will help guide investment of funds raised through the leasing of licences in the fishery in a manner that aims to increase employment and participation in this fishery. An increase in participation will likely result in increased catches from the region’s fisheries and be yet another measure of success. However, catch reporting by Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal fishers in the Torres Strait is not mandatory, and therefore a reliable measure of increased catch is not possible. Nonetheless, the PZJA is currently investigating a series of mechanisms to improve data collection from the Traditional Inhabitant Boat sector. One possible mechanism is the implementation of a mandatory reporting system for seafood buyers. It is expected that a reporting system for seafood buyers could be implemented as early as July 2017.
Number of opportunities for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people to increase their understanding and use of Torres Strait fisheries resources This indicator is being met through the finfish capacity-building project. Twenty-two fishers participated in 2015-2016 (13 in effective representation training, nine in fisheries management principles training).
The TSRA also funds the formal participation of up to five Torres Strait representatives in all PZJA consultative forums.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of TSRA members, Left to right: Charles David (TSRA); Aaron Tom (Gudamalulgal Representative, Tropical Rock Lobster Resource Allocation Group); Professor Alistair Mcilgorm; Terrence Whap (Maluialgal Representative, Tropical Rock Lobster Resource Allocation Group); Satrick Baluz (Iama Representative, Prawn Management Advisory Committee); Paul Kabai (Gudamalulgal Representative, Scientific Advisory Committee); Kenny Bedford (TSRA Fisheries Portfolio Member)

LEFT TO RIGHT: CHARLES DAVID (TSRA); AARON TOM (GUDAMALULGAL REPRESENTATIVE, TROPICAL ROCK LOBSTER RESOURCE ALLOCATION GROUP); PROFESSOR ALISTAIR MCILGORM; TERRENCE WHAP (MALUIALGAL REPRESENTATIVE, TROPICAL ROCK LOBSTER RESOURCE ALLOCATION GROUP); SATRICK BALUZ (IAMA REPRESENTATIVE, PRAWN MANAGEMENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE); PAUL KABAI (GUDAMALULGAL REPRESENTATIVE, SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY COMMITTEE); KENNY BEDFORD (TSRA FISHERIES PORTFOLIO MEMBER).

CASE STUDY

Participating in the management of the region’s fisheries

The TSRA Fisheries Programme supports Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal peoples’ participation in the management of the region’s fisheries. The programme recently engaged Professor Alistair McIlgorm from the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security to run workshops on fisheries management principles.

The workshops were designed to support Torres Strait representatives in fisheries management forums such as advisory committees and working groups in their role and bring together their own knowledge of fisheries with western principles of fisheries management. Advisory committees and working groups provide advice to the Protected Zone Joint Authority (PZJA) on the management of Torres Strait fisheries.

Two series of workshops were delivered with participation from nine Torres Strait representatives in fisheries management forums. The workshops focused on the PZJA consultative forums and covered a wide range of topics from the legislative framework of the PZJA, to stock assessments and fisheries management tools used around the world.

The workshops’ success may see regular workshops directed at further equipping Torres Strait representatives to effectively engage in the fisheries management processes as members of PZJA committees.

Environmental Management

REGIONAL GOAL

Our natural and cultural environment is an asset that is protected, preserved and enjoyed through sustainable management.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The programme goal is identical to the regional goal.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Environmental Management Programme aims to contribute to sustainable environmental management by:

  • promoting the sustainable management of natural resources
  • managing the effects of climate change, tidal inundation and erosion
  • increasing the utilisation of renewable energies
  • reducing the environmental impacts of waste management
  • improving land management for future generations.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

The programme is delivered by the TSRA’s Land and Sea Management Unit. The programme deliverables are to achieve the outcomes from the:

  • fisheries project
  • land project
  • garden and horticulture project
  • biodiversity project
  • invasive species project
  • seagrass and other research activities project
  • land and sea rangers project
  • climate change and coastal erosion project
  • research initiatives.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-18: Environmental Management Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
4,501 4,408 93

PROGRAMME EXTERNAL FUNDING EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-19: Environmental Management Programme external funding expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
9,686 10,005 (319)

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Strengthened sustainable use, protection and management of natural and cultural resources.
  • Improved community adaptation to climate change impacts, including sea level rise.
  • Increased uptake of renewable energy for Torres Strait.
  • Support community sustainable horticulture.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Biodiversity planning and management Biodiversity profiles have been prepared for each island to support and inform local planning processes. Rangers have been trained in mangrove monitoring techniques. Plant and animal reference books that include local language names are under development.
Invasive species management The TSRA has facilitated the development of a Regional Biosecurity Strategy for Torres Strait that was recently endorsed by partner agencies, as well as the Torres Shire Council and Torres Strait Island Regional Council. State funding has been secured for a 12-month project to manage feral animals and weeds on key islands across the region through a partnership approach with local government.
Sustainable horticulture project Sustainable community gardens have been achieved in a limited number of communities due to a range challenges. The Environmental Management Programme works closely with the Healthy Communities Programme, which provides funding support for horticulture activities in the region.
Turtle and dugong management Dugong and turtle management plans are in place for each outer island community and are being implemented by communities with the support of the TSRA. The plans integrate traditional use and contemporary science and management approaches to support the sustainable management of dugongs and turtles across the region. A dugong and turtle management plan and permitting regime for the Kaiwalagal region are under development by Traditional Owners with support from the TSRA.
Marine biodiversity Rangers have been trained in seagrass monitoring techniques and are actively carrying out intertidal monitoring in seven communities. Coral surveys and assessment of the extent of coral bleaching also occurred in 2015-2016 and ongoing monitoring arrangements are under development. Remote weather stations at four locations across the region continue to be maintained and are collecting weather and marine data.
Water quality Research is underway to investigate the impacts of Fly River pollution on the marine resources of the Torres Strait. This research will occur through a partnership between James Cook University, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and the Australian Institute of Marine Science with support from the TSRA, under the National Environmental Science Programme. The research project started in January 2016 and will be completed by December 2017.
State of the environment report card The Land and Sea Management Strategy for Torres Strait 2016-2036 was endorsed by Gur A Baradharaw Kod (the Torres Strait Sea and Land Council) and the TSRA Board in March 2016. The strategy is the guiding framework for environmental management in the region, and includes the first regional state of the environment report card for the Torres Strait, which provides an assessment of the health, condition and trends affecting the region’s key natural and cultural values. The case study on page 47 provides further information on the strategy.
Ranger project The TSRA employs 45 rangers and three trainees, as well as support staff, across 14 outer island communities. Working on Country plans, endorsed by Traditional Owners, are in place to guide the local cultural and natural resource management activities of rangers. Rangers participate in a comprehensive training programme, and the TSRA is exploring with partner agencies options for formalising ranger powers under environmental legislation.
Indigenous Protected Areas (IPA) project Three IPAs have been declared and are being actively managed in the Torres Strait region: Warul Kawa IPA, Pulu Islet IPA and the recently declared Warraberalgal Porumalgal IPA. The TSRA, including rangers from associated communities, continues to actively support the implementation of management plans for all IPAs in the region.
Traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) project The TEK project supports participating Torres Strait communities to utilise a TEK database for the collection, protection and controlled sharing of cultural and natural resource information while ensuring adherence to cultural protocols. Nine Torres Strait communities on eight islands are participating in the project. A review of the TEK project was undertaken in early 2016 to explore how to increase the uptake of the TEK system, how to better incorporate TEK into land and sea management, and how to best utilise project resources (staff and funding) for the remaining two years of National Landcare Project funding (until June 2018).
Traditional Owner engagement The recently endorsed Land and Sea Management Strategy for Torres Strait 2016-2036 was developed through a partnership approach with the region’s Traditional Owners. The TSRA is exploring mechanisms for strengthening Traditional Owner engagement in the delivery of land and sea management priorities, including through fee-for-service opportunities.
Climate change adaptation and resilience A regional climate change adaptation and resilience plan has been developed. Community-level adaptation plans for all outer islands will be completed by the end of 2016.
Renewable energy The TSRA has engaged, and will continue to engage, with Ergon Energy with regard to supporting renewable energy projects on various islands. Ergon has indicated strong interest in working with the TSRA to progress the uptake of renewable energy in the region. A project brief has been approved and project plan developed. Discussion is in progress on the scope and responsibilities to develop and deliver a regional energy strategy.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
Number of actions in the climate change strategy and associated action plans implemented A draft regional adaptation and resilience action plan has been developed. Community workshops occurred in 2015-2016, and further workshops are scheduled for 2016-2017.
Number of agreements in place with energy providers to reduce reliance on non-renewable diesel fuel usage for electricity production Ergon has indicated strong interest in working with the TSRA to progress the uptake of renewable energy in the region. A project brief has been approved and project plan developed. Discussion is in progress on the scope and responsibilities to develop and deliver a regional energy strategy.
Number of inhabited islands with active food-producing community gardens in place While community interest in horticulture activities is high, participation has been low. Efforts will be refocused to provide ongoing support to Tagai College to implement a school garden programme.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

CASE STUDY

Land and Sea Management Strategy for Torres Strait

In 2015-2016, the TSRA coordinated the development of a revised land and sea management strategy for the Torres Strait. The Land and Sea Management Strategy for Torres Strait 2016-2036 is a guiding framework for enabling Torres Strait communities to continue to sustainably manage and benefit from their land, sea and cultural resources into the future.

WHAT ARE THE STRATEGY’S AIMS?

The strategy aims to help Torres Strait communities work together to keep the Torres Strait environment in pristine condition by protecting key values for the future.

To achieve this, the strategy:

  • promotes regional and local land and sea management aspirations and capacity
  • helps us to understand the health of key values in the region and how things might be changing
  • provides information to support local planning and management efforts
  • seeks ongoing investment to enable communities to look after their islands and seas in a culturally appropriate way.
HOW WAS THE STRATEGY PREPARED?

The original Land and Sea Management Strategy for Torres Strait 2005 was updated in 2015 to reflect developments in Native Title, management arrangements, research outcomes and community priorities. Input was sought from Traditional Owners, TSRA Board members, rangers, government partners and external experts. The strategy was finalised and endorsed in March 2016. TSRA and Gur A Baradharaw Kod (the Torres Strait Sea and Land Council) are joint signatories to the strategy.

“Strong foundations have been laid for partnerships between Native Title holders and Native Title Representative Bodies, community members, all levels of government, research institutions, industry and other existing and potential partners in implementing priority land and sea management initiatives under the strategy. ”

The best available traditional and scientific knowledge was used to prepare the first-ever regional state of the environment report card for the Torres Strait. The report card gives an overview of the health of key values across the entire region. It will be updated every five years and will help us to monitor environmental changes and inform management efforts into the future.

Island land and sea profiles have been prepared for each of the 17 inhabited islands. The profiles summarise the key environmental features of the islands and community priorities for management. These profiles are intended to provide information to support local planning and decision-making in relation to environmental management, and can also be used as educational and promotional tools. They will be reviewed and updated every three to five years.

HOW WILL THE STRATEGY BE IMPLEMENTED?

Strong foundations have been laid for partnerships between Native Title holders and Native Title Representative Bodies, community members, all levels of government, research institutions, industry and other existing and potential partners in implementing priority land and sea management initiatives under the strategy.

Local-level plans (such as Working on Country plans) will be further strengthened to help deliver the strategy. There will be regular opportunities for Traditional Owners and communities to provide input to these local-level plans and to participate in local land and sea management initiatives.

A regional investment prospectus will be prepared identifying opportunities for existing and potential partners to contribute time, resources and effort towards implementation of the strategy according to their capacity and priorities.

a photograph of sunrise, Northern Peninsula Area

SUNRISE, NORTHERN PENINSULA AREA.

Governance and Leadership

REGIONAL GOAL

Effective and transparent self-government with strong leadership.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The Governance and Leadership Programme goal is:

  • to support positive and meaningful outcomes for people in leadership, communication and governance. The programme will work towards achieving equality in leadership, as appropriate to Ailan Kastom, by delivering targeted activities for women and youth.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Governance and Leadership Programme aims to:

  • involve Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal leaders in legislative processes, policies and priorities
  • undertake capacity building for current and future leaders across the region
  • support effective regional communication
  • coordinate the integration of the delivery of government services to the region
  • improve the governance and leadership capacity of the TSRA.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Implementation of the National Indigenous Reform Agreement service delivery principles.
  • Appropriate Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal participation in decision-making.
  • Improved communication, cultural competence and service delivery within a community development framework across governments.
  • Strong Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal organisational leadership and governance.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-20: Governance and Leadership Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
4,896 5,268 (372)

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Implementation of the National Indigenous Reform Agreement service delivery principles.
  • Appropriate Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal participation in decision-making.
  • Improved communication, cultural competence and service delivery within a community development framework across governments.
  • Strong Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal organisational leadership and governance.

During 2015-2016, the Prescribed Bodies Corporate capacity-building initiative was transferred to the TSRA’s Native Title Programme.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Community consultation and engagement At the request of community leaders, community consultation and engagement processes for two Northern Peninsula Area communities (Bamaga and Seisia) and two Torres Strait communities (Hammond and Saibai) were not completed in 2015-2016. A revised schedule for all communities will be developed in 2016-2017.
Integrated Service Delivery community booklets Community booklets were refreshed for 13 communities. Community engagement activities need to be completed following the election of the new TSRA Board in 2016.
Media and communications support This is a contracted activity through Zakazukha Marketing Communications. In 2015-2016, 58 media releases were produced.
Internal and external audit support Both the external and internal audit programmes were completed. Audit recommendation tracking and status reports were provided at four Audit Committee meetings.
Assistance with Tertiary Education Scheme Thirteen tertiary scholarships were offered in 2015-2016. One student has deferred and nine students met the pass criteria in the first semester to qualify for the second semester support payment.
Board and Chairperson support Four executive meetings, four Audit Committee meetings, four Board meetings and one special Board meeting were conducted in 2015-2016. Executive assistance was provided to the TSRA Chairperson.
Board Strategic Workshop Fourteen Board members attended the TSRA’s Board Strategic Workshop in November 2015. The focus for this workshop was on financial planning, strategic planning and risk management. The Board also reviewed the TSRA’s progress against the Minister for Indigenous Affairs’ Statement of Expectations and delivery against the TSRA’s Statement of Intent.
Indigenous leadership In 2015-2016, one person was supported to complete the Australian Rural Leadership Programme, and one person was supported and completed the Training Rural Australians in Leadership programme.
Support to regional broadcasting The Torres Strait Islanders Media Association met its broadcasting hours and local content targets. A new recording studio was completed in 2014-2015 and officially opened in 2015-2016, enabling the local production of music CDs, electronic recordings and live music broadcasts.
Women’s and youth leadership Participation in leadership programmes increased. There was an increase in women participating in the Torres Strait Women’s Leadership Programme. Three female graduates of the programme contested the TSRA Board members election for their respective wards in 2016. Six participants were supported in the Torres Strait Young Leaders Programme.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
Achieve a minimum of 20 per cent increase in access to services over the life of the Torres Strait Development Plan 2014-2018 measured from the 2012 baseline regional plan community booklets The Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area Regional Plan 2009-2029 identified 1,608 1 service gaps. 2 In 2012-2013, 372 (23 per cent) had been fully addressed. This increased to 773 (48 per cent) in 2013-2014 and 1,034 (64 per cent) in 2014-2015. In 2015-2016, new issues were identified from the refresh of 13 community booklets. The issues that have been fully addressed remain at 1,064 (64 per cent).
An analysis of the service gaps is shown in Section 3 of this report.
Increase in Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal women with the capacity to participate in leadership roles in the region measured from the 2012 baseline The 2012 baseline was six. Four women completed the Torres Strait Women’s Leadership Programme in 2013-2014 and four completed the programme in 2014-2015. During 2015-2016, seven completed the programme and 10 participants have been enrolled for 2016-2017. The Torres Strait Women’s Leadership Programme is delivered in partnership with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation. Three of the six participants in the Australian Rural Leadership Programme were women.
Increase in Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal youth (18-25) with the capacity to participate in leadership development activities measured from the 2012 baseline Training Rural Australians in Leadership:
  • 2013-2014 – two male, one female
  • 2014-2015 – three male, four female
  • 2015-2016 – one male.
Torres Strait Young Leaders Programme:
  • 2013-2014 – one male, three female
  • 2014-2015 – one male , three female
  • 2015-2016 – two male, four female.
Both programmes are delivered in partnership with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation.

Notes:

1. The community consultations conducted in 2014-2015 identified that some community booklets contained duplicate entries of gaps in services. Five duplications were removed, reducing the baseline from 1,613 reported in 2013-2014 to 1,608 this year.

2. The service gaps were identified in 2009-2010 as part of the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area Regional Plan 2009-2029 development process.

Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of 2015 Torres Strait Women’S Leadership Programme Participants. Left To Right: Susanna Tapau – Mer, Olive Bann – Thursday Island, Helen Mosby – Masig, Senator The Hon Nigel Scullion – Minister For Indigenous Affairs, Lisa Lui – Thursday Island, Larissa Bani – Mabuiag, Vera Havili – Thursday Island, Jenni Pilot – Thursday Island

2015 TORRES STRAIT WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP PROGRAMME PARTICIPANTS. LEFT TO RIGHT: SUSANNA TAPAU – MER, OLIVE BANN – THURSDAY ISLAND, HELEN MOSBY – MASIG, SENATOR THE HON NIGEL SCULLION – MINISTER FOR INDIGENOUS AFFAIRS, LISA LUI – THURSDAY ISLAND, LARISSA BANI – MABUIAG, VERA HAVILI – THURSDAY ISLAND, JENNI PILOT – THURSDAY ISLAND.

CASE STUDY

Torres Strait Women’s Leadership Programme

The TSRA has identified the need to develop the governance and advocacy capacity of the women of the Torres Strait region. The Torres Strait Women’s Leadership Programme is one component of the regional capacity-building initiatives undertaken through the Governance and Leadership Programme. Currently the participation of female leaders on boards, committees and special interest groups in the region is minimal.

The TSRA initiated its inaugural programme in 2014. Four women graduated in the first programme and seven women graduated in the second programme. The TSRA is now in the process of delivering its third programme with a cohort of 10 women from across the Torres Strait region.

The TSRA offers placements for up to 10 Indigenous women living in the Torres Strait region. The Women’s Leadership Programme is held over 10 days and delivered through three sessions – two in the Torres Strait and one in Canberra. The sessions are designed to challenge participants, both personally and professionally, in a safe learning environment to improve their leadership practice and understanding of governance.

The TSRA provides resources to enable the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation to conduct leadership programmes such as this in order to develop participants’ skills and capacity for leadership. The objectives of the programme are to develop their:

  • understanding of and capacity for engagement in governance and politics
  • self-awareness and adaptability in their approaches to leadership
  • leadership skills including persuasion
  • influence and meeting facilitation
  • confidence levels in relation to public speaking.

Ms Vera Havili from Thursday Island was a graduate from the 2015 programme. She said, ‘The Women’s Leadership Programme gave me tools to do things differently. It prepared me to discover the potentials I thought I didn’t have and since doing the programme I had set some achievable goals for myself and YES I have overcome every one of them including exercising my passion in Indigenous knowledge and justice. I have since taken up a management role on my island home (Mer) serving my people’. Ms Havili is also running in the 2016 TSRA elections for Member for Mer.

The Australian Rural Leadership Foundation and the TSRA have a long partnership in developing the capacity of future leaders in the Torres Strait.

a photograph of TSRA Rangers Setting A Feral Pig Trap On Moa As Part Of Their Working On Country Activities

TSRA RANGERS SETTING A FERAL PIG TRAP ON MOA AS PART OF THEIR WORKING ON COUNTRY ACTIVITIES.

Native Title

REGIONAL GOAL

Protect, maintain and progress Native Title rights and recognition over the region’s land and sea country.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The Native Title Programme goal is to provide high-quality and culturally appropriate professional services to Native Title holders and claimants in the Torres Strait region, to facilitate the securing of legal recognition of Native Title to land and waters in the Torres Strait and thereby improve opportunities for economic, cultural and social participation for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people living in the region.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Native Title Programme aims to:

  • assist Traditional Owners to obtain legal recognition of Native Title over land and sea in the Torres Strait region
  • manage and legally protect Native Title rights
  • build the capacity of Registered Native Title Prescribed Bodies Corporate (PBCs).

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Provide legal, policy and advocacy support for PBCs.
  • Support Native Title activities, including determination of claims and provision of legal advice and support.
  • Negotiate and execute Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) and other statutory agreements.
  • Provide legal advice and support in relation to future acts.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016 (INCLUDES EXTERNAL FUNDING)

Table 2-21: Native Title Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
3,129 3,338 (209)

PROGRAMME EXTERNAL FUNDING EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-22: Native Title Programme external funding expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
350 0 350

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Changes to Native Title and fisheries legislation which recognise the commercial rights as part of the Native Title rights of Traditional Owners under the Torres Strait Sea Claim Part A determination.
  • Successfully negotiated future acts and Indigenous Land Use Agreements.
  • Native Title claims are successfully determined.
  • Prescribed Bodies Corporate understand and met their responsibilities under the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth).

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Native Title compensation Native Title compensation matters are on hold pending the outcomes of the Timber Creek test case, which is set to be determined by the Federal Court by the end of 2016. The Timber Creek case is historic as this will be the first time the courts will set a precedent on how to compensate loss of Native Title land.
Deeds of Grant in Trust (DOGIT) transfer There were no DOGIT transfers in 2015-2016. The Queensland Government has not scheduled any DOGIT transfers for 2016-2017.
Land Holding Act (Katter Leases) There are 351 Katter Leases in the region. The TSRA has been working with the Queensland Government and the Torres Strait Island Regional Council to finalise Katter Leases on Badu Island. This work is in progress. While the Queensland Government has also scheduled work on Katter Leases for Boigu, Mabuiag, Hammond and Moa islands, there are significant resource implications for the Native Title Office which are still being negotiated.
Major Infrastructure ILUA The Native Title Office is working with the Queensland Government and the Torres Strait Island Regional Council to finalise draft 23 of the Major Infrastructure ILUA. There have been delays in progressing this matter with the Queensland Government Department of Housing and Public Works.
Management of future acts and ILUA The Native Title Office received 66 future act notices in 2015-2016. Responses have been provided to 35 of these notices. The Native Title Office assisted PBCs with the negotiation of and certification for various ILUAs this financial year. There were 11 ILUAs registered with the National Native Title Tribunal in 2015-2016, and a further 35 ILUAs are under development. The finalisation of these ILUAs will deliver benefits for the common law holders and economic benefits and employment opportunities for the general community. The ILUAs will also provide a mechanism for compensation to the Traditional Owners for the suspension of their Native Title rights as well as ensure that Native Title rights and interests are protected. The finalisation of ILUAs has facilitated:
  • the construction of new social housing in Torres Strait communities
  • grant of tenure to government agencies to provide essential services to Torres Strait Island communities
  • the continuation of services from Telstra, the Islanders Board of Industry and Services and the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources to island communities
  • continued operations of the Australian Border Force in the region.
Native Title claim – Naghir Island The National Native Title Tribunal has been engaged to mediate on the outstanding issues between parties to develop a plan to progress the Naghir claim. Further progress is not possible until a successful mediation is completed.
Native Title claim – Sea Claim Part B (QUD6040/2001) Following the Federal Court’s recognition of Malu Lamar (Torres Strait Islander) Corporation RNTBC as the holder of the Native Title rights recognised in the Part A portion of the regional sea claim, the Native Title Office has been progressing the Part B portion of this claim. The Part B area is wholly overlapped by two claims – one claim is filed on behalf of the Kaurareg people and the other claim is filed on behalf of the Gudang Yadheykenu people. During court-ordered mediation in February 2015, agreement was reached between Badulgal, Mualgal and Kaurareg peoples that the western overlap is shared sea country. Negotiations have now commenced with the respondent parties (including the Commonwealth, the Queensland Government and Traditional Owners) towards a consent determination for the western agreed area. The aim is for the court to convene a determination hearing in 2016 at which Native Title rights will be recognised in the western agreed area. Negotiations with the Gudang Yadheykenu people about resolving the eastern overlap area are yet to be scheduled. The timing of these meetings will partly depend upon the completion of anthropological research and also the time and resources that must be devoted to finalising negotiations about the western agreed area with respondent parties.
Native Title Conference The Native Title Conference was held from 1 to 3 June 2016 in Darwin. The conference was attended by the TSRA Chairperson, Mr Joseph Elu, AO, and the TSRA Portfolio Member for Fisheries and Member for Erub, Mr Kenny Bedford. Mr Bedford presented a paper on fisheries management and ownership in the Torres Strait. The Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies sponsored Mr Seriako Stephen, the Chairperson of the Ugar Ged Kem Le Zeuber Er Kep (Torres Strait Islanders) Corporation RNTBC, to present a paper on the Ugar traditional boundaries project. See the case study on page 65 for more information.
NTRB legal services The Native Title Office has provided legal assistance to all Torres Strait and Aboriginal PBCs and Traditional Owners in the region upon request. Table 2.23 provides statistical information on the level of engagement. In 2016 a new legal assistance request process was implemented to manage and prioritise the number of requests being received for legal support relating to post-determination matters.
PBC regional workshops Two PBC regional workshops were held in 2015-2016.
Capacity building for the Gur A Baradharaw Kod Sea and Land Council In January 2016 this capacity-building project transferred from the TSRA’s Governance and Leadership Programme to the Native Title Programme. In June 2016 the Minister for Indigenous Affairs reconfirmed the TSRA as the Native Title Representative Body for the region from 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2018. The focus of the Gur A Baradharaw Kod capacity-building project has changed from a full transition of the NTRB function to the identification of the Native Title activities that can be undertaken by a regional Sea and Land Council. While the Gur A Baradharaw Kod has not yet established an office or staffing in the region, the TSRA is continuing to work with it to develop this capacity.
PBC support and capacity building In January 2016 this activity transferred from the TSRA’s Governance and Leadership Programme to the Native Title Programme. All 21 regional PBCs had met the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations compliance requirements as at 31 December 2015. Two PBCs have maintained a level of capacity which has reduced their dependency on grant funding by operating on a fee-for-service cost-recovery model.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
Number of changes to Native Title and fisheries legislation that reflect the commercial rights of Traditional Owners The Native Title Programme has not yet received instruction from the Malu Lamar (TSI) RNTBC on any changes to fisheries legislation.
Number of reported non-compliance matters involving Prescribed Bodies Corporate There are no reported non-compliance matters for the region.
Number of Deeds of Grant in Trust (DOGIT) transferred to Prescribed Bodies Corporate with appropriate support mechanisms There were no DOGIT transfers in 2015-2016. The Queensland Government does not have any DOGIT transfers scheduled for 2016-2017.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

STATISTICAL DATA

2-23: Performance statistics – Native Title Office

Facilitation and assistance Number
1. THE CLAIMS EXPERIENCE
Claimant applications  
Active claims represented at 30 June 2015 2
Plus claims filed this year by NTRB 0
Less claims determined 2015-2016 0
Less claims dismissed 2015-2016 0
Less claims withdrawn 2015-2016 0
(+ or -) Other disposition (describe) 0
Active claims represented at 30 June 2016 2
Number of active claims registered by National Native Title Tribunal 0
Claims in development 1
Non-claimant applications 0
Compensation claims 0
2. THE AGREEMENTS EXPERIENCE
Future act notices received 66
Responses to future acts 35
Agreements concluded 0
Agreements in development 0
ILUAs concluded and registered 11
ILUAs in development 35
Complaints and disputes
Complaints  
   Received 0
   Resolved 0
   Pending 0
Disputes relating to Native Title applications 0
Disputes relating to ILUAs, rights of access
and other matters
0
Requests for review of decisions not to assist
Requests received 0
Reviews completed 0

CASE STUDY

Collaborative Effort at Ugar to Settle Boundary Disputes

The TSRA in its role as Native Title Representative Body for the region has, through the Native Title Office, dispute resolution functions under section 203BF of the Native Title Act.

The most common form of Traditional Owner dispute, dating back well before western colonisation, has been boundary disputes. Island court records that pre-date the Mabo decision and the Native Title Act overwhelmingly show that boundary disputes were a main focus of discord in island communities.

“The TSRA as the Native Title Representative Body plays an important role to provide support to PBCs and Traditional Owners to resolve boundary disputes so that major infrastructure projects which benefit the community can go ahead as quickly as possible.”

Where there has been a court determination of Native Title, those rights and interests are recognised and protected under the Native Title Act. The responsibility for resolving Traditional Owner disputes now lies with the Registered Native Title Body Corporate, which is referred to as a Prescribed Body Corporate, or PBC, for the Native Title determination area. PBCs are incorporated under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act. The PBC holds Native Title in trust for all the Traditional Owners in the determination area.

An Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) may be required if the government or other entity or person wishes to construct a building on Native Title land. The PBC is required by law to engage with the Traditional Owner of the land and obtain their consent in writing before the PBC can sign off on an ILUA and the building can go ahead. It is during this consent process that an issue may arise whereby the land in question is claimed by more than one family or individual.

This ownership question is widespread throughout the Torres Strait and indeed mainland Australia. The TSRA as the Native Title Representative Body plays an important role to provide support to PBCs and Traditional Owners to resolve boundary disputes so that major infrastructure projects which benefit the community can go ahead as quickly as possible.

Although Native Title at Ugar was formally recognised by the Federal Court in 2004, the court determination did not contain all of the details about traditional land ownership. A complex system of traditional laws and customs provides for different parcels on the small volcanic island to be owned by different families.

The traditional laws and customs also involve sophisticated means of land inheritance and various forms of traditional land transactions between families.

The impacts of colonisation and the advance of modern life caused many Ugarem Le to leave their homeland for mainland Australia. This, and the oral means by which traditional laws are held and passed down, created uncertainties about the alignment of some traditional boundaries – especially where traditional boundary markers like rocks and trees were removed over the years as land was developed for modern infrastructure.

The Native Title Office arranged for a meeting of the Ugar PBC and Traditional Owners to be held in Cairns on 14-15 October 2014. As the Traditional Owners for Ugar were living in different parts of Australia, Cairns was chosen as the most convenient and cost-effective location to hold the meeting. At the meeting, Queensland Government representatives provided an update on land tenure matters including social housing. The Torres Strait Island Regional Council Mayor and Councillors also provided an update on the proposed new infrastructure which was planned for Ugar. The Native Title Office lawyers gave the community an update on progress on the Native Title claim for Part B of the regional sea claim, the roles and responsibilities of Malu Lamar PBC for Part A of the regional sea claim, and other matters related to Native Title.

It became apparent during the meeting that agreement had to be reached on traditional boundaries before any new or updated infrastructure could proceed to construction. This would require senior elders and Traditional Owners to be physically present on Ugar to identify and agree on traditional boundaries which would be recorded for future use.

Following discussion between the Native Title Office, the Torres Strait Island Regional Council and the Queensland Government, agreement was reached to mutually support a project to identify and record traditional boundaries and to carry out a proper survey of Ugar to correct errors in the current survey plan. The Native Title Office with the consent of the other parties obtained assistance from the National Native Title Tribunal to resolve disputes which arose during the course of the project.

The boundary mapping project commenced on 27 July 2015 and was completed on 7 August 2015. Elders and Traditional Owners from all around Australia converged on Ugar to focus on the issue of boundaries. Part of this project involved the Traditional Owners themselves placing town planning survey pegs to help the orderly expansion of the island’s small township as well as to identify traditional boundaries. The project’s outcomes cleared the way for a helipad upgrade, fuel bowser, desalination plant, community hall and fisheries freezer to go ahead. Some of these projects had been delayed for years because of boundary uncertainties and disputes.

a photograph of Boundary Dispute Resolution Workshop, Ugar (Stephen Island), 2015

BOUNDARY DISPUTE RESOLUTION WORKSHOP, UGAR (STEPHEN ISLAND), 2015.

Healthy Communities

REGIONAL GOAL

To enhance both healthy communities and our living environment and achieve the provision of adequate, appropriate and affordable housing.

PROGRAMME GOAL

The TSRA seeks to influence policy for all health programmes across all tiers of government, monitor health services and initiatives across the Torres Strait region and provide strategic policy advice.

The programme also provides direct support for initiatives that promote healthy lifestyles, and supports home ownership and other specific housing initiatives that are linked to healthy lifestyles and economic development in the region.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Healthy Communities Programme aims to:

  • seek to influence policy for all health programmes across all tiers of government
  • monitor health services and health initiatives across the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area and provide strategic policy advice
  • direct support targeting healthy lifestyles, including improving availability of fresh produce and healthy food options, and encouraging people to undertake healthy activities
  • provide some direct support for home ownership.

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Support community market garden and horticulture initiatives (in conjunction with the Environmental Management Programme).
  • Engage with food suppliers and retailers to increase supply and variety of healthy food options.
  • Support health education initiatives including physical education and nutrition, obesity, diabetes, motivation and substance abuse programmes.
  • Fund sport and recreation activities and minor infrastructure.
  • Contribute funding and provide policy advice for the delivery of essential services and infrastructure to support healthy living environments.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-24: Healthy Communities Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
27,879 27,541 338

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Secure whole-of-government investment for infrastructure to support healthy homes and healthy living environments.
  • Policies support community-managed delivery of primary and public health care services and are based on regional needs and priorities.
  • Improved access to affordable fresh and healthy foods.
  • More active and healthy communities.
  • Affordable home ownership available across the region.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
Seawalls The joint Australian and state government funded initiative to increase coastal protection in low-lying Torres Strait communities continued throughout the financial year. Construction of seawalls is being delivered on Saibai and is due for completion in January 2017.
Healthy fresh food and horticulture The Healthy Communities Programme continued to support the Environmental Management Programme with its delivery of horticulture initiatives through the provision of grant funding to community organisations to support market garden activities. The TSRA is working with key stakeholders to improve access to affordable, fresh and healthy food in the region including the local food suppliers, Islander Board of Industry and Services.
Sport and recreation activities (grant funding) The TSRA funded several local council minor sporting infrastructure projects including upgrades to Erub Stadium and Masig Stadium. The Torres Strait Youth and Recreational Sporting Association (TSYRSA) continued to administer sports subsidy funding on behalf of the TSRA throughout the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area region. The TSRA also provided support to the TSYRSA to build its organisational capacity to improve service delivery. This included training and development of staff and committee members in areas of administration and accounting. Six major local sporting carnival events were supported. Ninety-eight sport and recreation grants encouraged participation in a range of sporting and recreational activities including participation in various sporting events at state and national levels. A coaching and referee clinic was delivered in April 2016 resulting in accreditation for seven Indigenous participants. Sport and recreation participation rates for the period:
  • In the 0-12 age group: 241 children
  • In the 13-25 age group: 1,252 young people
  • In the 26-54 age group: 2,034 adults
  • In the 55 years and over age group: 210 people
  • Total: 3,737 participants.
Waste and landfill projects The Healthy Communities Programme continues to work with key stakeholders in local, state and Australian government agencies to address waste management issues in the region. A grant was provided to Torres Shire Council to undertake a staged community awareness campaign to be delivered for Torres Strait inner islands. A regional waste management implementation strategy driven at a regional level by local councils is being developed with support provided by the Healthy Communities Programme as required.
Horn Island affordable housing project Construction of subdivision works is yet to commence at the proposed site on Horn Island. This project has been delayed due to Native Title matters. The TSRA is working closely with the Torres Shire Council and state government to resolve matters. It is anticipated that works on the subdivision will commence in late 2016.
Major infrastructure projects Thirteen environmental health infrastructure projects will be delivered under the Major Infrastructure Programme Stage 5. All projects are on track for completion by December 2016. The TSRA successfully secured state and Australian government infrastructure funding for Stage 6 of the Major Infrastructure Programme (MIP 6). Despite the funding commitment from the Australian and Queensland governments, as at 30 June 2016, there was still a $1.5 million shortfall for MIP 6. The TSRA has worked, and will continue to work, closely with the three regional councils to coordinate a major infrastructure programme priority list. Water security for the region will be the major focus of MIP 6.
MIP trust and other infrastructure projects The TSRA has continued to work with the Torres Strait Island Regional Council to identify infrastructure and non-infrastructure solutions to allow for all-tide safe access to Ugar community. The TSRA provided water security grant funding for the Prince of Wales Island community. This funding has provided water tanks to the community. The second stage of this project will consist of bore water drilling exploration as part of investigating long-term and sustainable water supply for the community. This component of the project is currently on hold pending Native Title resolution.
Regional water operations and support The TSRA continued its contribution to the Torres Strait Island Regional Council Water and Waste Water Management Programme through 2015-2016 to ensure services are adequately maintained for outer island communities. The TSRA provided grant support to the Torres Strait Island Regional Council to enable the purchase of five emergency desalination units to mitigate critical water shortages in Torres Strait communities due to a poor wet season.
Health promotion and community education projects The TSRA provides operational funding to the TSYRSA. The TSYRSA provided support towards sporting events in the region and worked closely with event organisers to engage with stakeholders such as Queensland Health, to deliver health and nutrition education initiatives. The TSRA funded a community waste education programme as part of Torres Shire’s waste solutions.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
Increased access to fresh and affordable foods in Torres Strait communities The TSRA is adopting a multi-pronged approach to address this need. This involves engaging with local fresh food suppliers to improve the range and quality of foods, holding further discussions with retailers to improve delivery of food supplies in outer island communities, and contributing to discussions to improve community-based gardening initiatives.
Increase in participation in structured sport, recreation and healthy lifestyle activities The TSRA continued its funding of sporting subsidies through its partnership with the Torres Strait Youth and Recreational Sporting Association. Six major local sporting events were delivered and 98 grants for a range of sporting and recreational activities were approved. A total of 3,737 participants were supported in 2015-2016, which is an increase in comparison to the 2,123 reported in the previous year.
Increase in serviced land and infrastructure to support housing for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people The TSRA continues to support Torres Shire Council to deliver a subdivision on Horn Island. The TSRA has contributed funding to establish the subdivision and in-ground services for 24 housing lots. Issues with Native Title delayed this project; however, works are now expected to commence later in 2016.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of Torres Shire Council Employees Install A Drain As Part Of The Wasaga Village Roads And Drainage Project

TORRES SHIRE COUNCIL EMPLOYEES INSTALL A DRAIN AS PART OF THE WASAGA VILLAGE ROADS AND DRAINAGE PROJECT.

CASE STUDY

Improving the Lives of Torres Strait People

The Torres Strait Major Infrastructure Programme (MIP), jointly funded by the Commonwealth Government, through the TRSA, and the Queensland Government, delivers vital environmental health infrastructure to communities in the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area region.

Since commencement of MIP in 1998, more than 100 essential environmental health infrastructure projects have been delivered throughout the region, providing opportunities for employment and skills development, and empowering councils to independently maintain and enhance their infrastructure.

A project currently being delivered by Torres Shire Council under Stage 5 of the MIP is the Wasaga Village Roads and Drainage Project on Horn Island. This project will deliver the reconstruction of roads and drainage works throughout the community, providing health benefits associated with reduction in dust and water-borne diseases.

This project has provided both accredited and practical onsite training for local Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal employees, many of whom are now developing career paths into management and technical roles. Through the delivery of this stage of the Wasaga Village Roads and Drainage Project, 24 Indigenous staff have been employed and/or trained, 10 are currently enrolled for accredited training with a regional training organisation, seven have already completed 42 modules in civil construction to date, and three have enrolled to complete a Certificate II and III in water operations.

Under Stage 5 of the MIP, a total of 41 Indigenous staff have received employment. By the completion of this stage in December 2016, it is anticipated that a total of 70 Indigenous staff will have received employment and training through delivery of the 13 environmental health infrastructure projects.

The TRSA continues to work with the Commonwealth, state and local governments and communities to support future environmental health infrastructure initiatives and employment and development opportunities for local Indigenous people.

Safe Communities

REGIONAL GOAL

To have safe, healthy, respectful and progressive communities, based on Ailan Kastom and Aboriginal traditions (communities) and strong families and safe and healthy communities that are guided by cultural and traditional lore (social services).

PROGRAMME GOALS

The Safe Communities Programme goals are:

  • to contribute to the development of standards for the provision of all mainstream social services and facilities, including emergency response services, through engagement with responsible agencies
  • to undertake a policy advocacy, monitoring and supporting role with respect to mainstream services, advocating and acting as a solution broker on behalf of communities and the region, using integrated service delivery forums
  • to provide direct funding and resource support for some social support services, and infrastructure, facilities and equipment, that contribute to improved safety and accessibility of communities and families (the TSRA does not provide mainstream social or community services).

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES

The Safe Communities Programme aims to contribute to the development of standards for the provision of all mainstream social services and facilities, including emergency response services, through engagement with responsible agencies.

The programme will undertake a policy advocacy, monitoring and supporting role with respect to mainstream services, advocating and acting as a solution broker on behalf of communities and the region, using integrated service delivery forums.

The programme will provide direct funding and resource support for some social support services, and infrastructure, facilities and equipment, that contribute to improved safety and accessibility for communities and families (the TSRA will not provide mainstream social or community services).

PROGRAMME DELIVERABLES

  • Support Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal women, men and children social development and support programmes, and child and family safety programmes.
  • Support safe and accessible community infrastructure, land and sea communication systems, and community capacity building.
  • Participate in inter-agency and integrated service delivery meetings and forums to discuss issues of community and domestic safety and to contribute to shaping planning and service delivery in the region.

PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE 2015-2016

Table 2-25: Safe Communities Programme expenditure, 2015-2016

Budget
$’000
Actual
$’000
Variance
$’000
2,761 2,870 (109)

TORRES STRAIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES

  • Effective community and social services support.
  • Families and individuals are safe in home and community.
  • Public areas are safe and accessible for community members.
  • Communities have access to appropriate transport infrastructure.

PROGRAMME PERFORMANCE

ACTIVITY FLAG STATUS
School attendance and learning initiatives (grants) The TSRA provides grants for projects that improve the delivery of social services in the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area. In 2015-2016 the TSRA continued supporting ‘Ensuring a Strait Start’, a project developed by the Torres Strait Islanders Regional Education Council (TSIREC) to improve access to early education support in the Torres Strait communities. Strait Start is being delivered in Thursday Island, Badu, Poruma, Boigu, Iama, Erub, Kubin, Masig and Mer communities. TSIREC is working towards implementing the project in Warraber, Mabuiag, Saibai, St Pauls and Horn Island communities.
Community safety partnerships The TSRA’s role in the Torres Strait is enhanced through partnerships with relevant local, state and Australian government agencies. The TSRA is a member of the Torres Strait Maritime Safety Programme, which contributes to improved boating safety.
Community safety projects (grants) In the previous reporting period, funds were provided for an accredited lifeguard training project at the local pool on the Northern Peninsula Area. The project was delivered in 2015-2016. A total of 19 participants successfully completed the training course, which included lifeguard training, the Bronze Medallion course and the First Aid Certificate. See the case study on page 81 for more information.
Law enforcement partnerships The TSRA provides funding support for the delivery of legal services for residents in the region through a partnership with the Attorney-General’s Department. The service is provided by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services. The TSRA and the Attorney-General’s Department have agreed to continue their partnership arrangements for a further three years, ensuring that key legal services support will continue to be provided for the region. In 2015-2016, 768 cases relating to duty lawyer, criminal, family and civil casework were supported; 2,698 cases were supported for advice and minor assistance. The Community Legal Education Officer role continues to assist clients with understanding the legal process.
Social services delivered by NGOs – Port Kennedy Association and Mura Kosker Sorority Core operational and service support funding was provided to the Mura Kosker Sorority and Port Kennedy Association to continue to deliver important community social support services. With this support these two organisations deliver programmes such as child and family support services, after school and holiday care initiatives, financial counselling and literacy, and women’s and men’s support groups. Additional funding was also granted to support governance and administrative capacity building for these community-based non-government social services providers.
Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme The TSRA continued to work with the Queensland Government Department of Transport and Main Roads through a memorandum of understanding to deliver the Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme (TIDS). In 2015-2016, TIDS delivered a schedule of works covering land, sea and air transport infrastructure on Torres Strait outer island communities and in the Northern Peninsula Area. The Torres Strait works included:
  • airport line marking for 11 communities
  • initial works on barge/boat ramp upgrades for Masig, Dauan, Hammond, Kubin and Erub communities.
  • design and construction of the floating component of the Dauan jetty
  • preliminary survey and design works for the Erub Airport Road.
The Northern Peninsula Area works included Bamaga Airport emergency works. In addition to the TIDS schedule of works, the TSRA and the Department of Transport and Main Roads have contributed towards the upgrade of the wharf infrastructure on Hammond Island. Works are set to commence in 2016-2017.
Coordination of infrastructure planning The TSRA works in partnership with key Commonwealth and state government agencies to secure and maintain funding relationships that contribute to key regional infrastructure projects. In 2015-2016, the TSRA developed and implemented a new funding model to support minor community infrastructure projects. This model is a co-funding initiative eligible to the three local government councils in the region. The TSRA worked closely with the three local government councils to coordinate a major infrastructure programme priority list, which was used to support the MIP 6 funding bid.
Community capacity building (grants) Six grants were provided to individuals and community organisations to encourage community safety awareness and capacity building in the current social services providers to improve the wellbeing of communities.
Social and economic engagement partnerships In 2015-2016, the TSRA worked with key partners to improve social and economic community engagement. The Safe Communities Programme contributed to integrated service delivery forums as well as interagency social service forums. While no new formal partnerships were finalised in this period, the programme’s existing partnerships to improve the safety of family, community and public spaces were strengthened.
Social services delivered by NGOs (grants) At the completion of the non-government organisations review in 2014-2015, additional funding and organisational support was provided to Mura Kosker Sorority and Port Kennedy Association. This support will build governance and administrative capacity to improve the delivery of social support services in the Torres Strait region. Activities funded in 2015-2016 included:
  • Mura Kosker Sorority – NGO support funding
  • Port Kennedy Association – community after school care programme
  • Port Kennedy Association – IT communications and electrical upgrade.
Legend
Not yet started Completed/on schedule Behind schedule less than three months Behind schedule more than three months

ADDITIONAL PROGRAMME-SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

INDICATOR FLAG STATUS
All Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people employed in the TSRA supported social services sector in the region have appropriate accreditation The majority of Indigenous staff employed by TSRA-funded organisations have appropriate accreditation to effectively perform their duties within the social services sector. These include Certificates in Aged Care and Disability Services, Children’s Services, Community Services, and Business Administration; Associate Degree in Indigenous Community Management and Development; and Diploma in Financial Counselling.
All TSRA-funded service delivery organisations in the region provide quality services and operate in accordance with relevant standards Social support services are effectively delivered in the region by the Mura Kosker Sorority and the Port Kennedy Association and are operated in accordance with relevant standards under the Associations Incorporation Act 1981 (Qld), and within the TSRA funding guidelines. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service also delivers legal services in the region in accordance with relevant standards and guidelines under the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department’s Indigenous Legal Assistance and Policy Reform Programme.
Reduction in service referrals, response timeframes and waiting lists for social services providers The amount of service referrals varies from time to time, depending on clients’ individual circumstances. The programmes delivered by the Mura Kosker Sorority and Port Kennedy Association include the Disability/Flexi-Respite Programme and the Old People’s Action Programme. All responses to clients and waiting lists are managed efficiently in line with the service provisions of those organisations.
Increased participation in TSRA-supported community events by residents and TSRA-funded service organisations The number of residents and TSRA-funded organisations participating in various community events in 2015-2016 increased to 400 participants compared to previous years with an average of 250 participants. Some community events coordinated by the Mura Kosker Sorority and Port Kennedy Association are International Women’s Day celebrations, Domestic Violence Prevention Month, Mini-Markets, White Ribbon Awareness Day, Biggest Morning Tea, National Aboriginal and Islander Children’s Day, and Child Protection Week.
Legend
Not yet started Achieved Partially achieved Not achieved

a photograph of Northern Peninsula Area Lifeguards Now Fully Qualified After Completing Their Lifeguard Training

NORTHERN PENINSULA AREA LIFEGUARDS NOW FULLY QUALIFIED AFTER COMPLETING THEIR LIFEGUARD TRAINING.

CASE STUDY

Accredited Lifeguard Training

Swimming is a key activity in the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area and safety is the utmost concern for families in the region. In 2015-2016, the TSRA provided grant funding to the Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council to engage a qualified and accredited trainer to provide local people with accredited training in lifeguard duties and enable consistent, safe and effective operation of the swimming pool at Bamaga community.

“A group of local people are now qualified to supervise activities at the Bamaga pool, resulting in it being available for operation all year round and an increase in local attendance.”

The aim of the project was to increase public safety and usage at the Bamaga swimming pool by providing a team of local pool attendants with accredited lifeguard training. The funding also covered the costs of attendants’ uniforms and essential lifesaving equipment, including rescue tubes and rings, rescue throw bags, a 20-metre throw line, a spine board, reach poles and first aid blankets.

The project was delivered successfully, with a total of 19 participants attending and completing the training course. The course included lifeguard training, the Bronze Medallion course and the First Aid Certificate.

A group of local people are now qualified to supervise activities at the Bamaga pool, resulting in it being available for operation all year round and an increase in local attendance. Lifesaving equipment is also vital in case of emergency, and staff are easily identifiable by their uniforms, which has increased safety and response times.