This week, the Territory Labor Government announced it will invest almost $12 million to continue its Aboriginal Ranger Grants program.
As part of the 2021-22 Budget, $11.9 million has been allocated to keep the program running for another four years.
Nunggubuyu woman Selena Uibo, the Labor minister for both Aboriginal Affairs and Parks and Rangers, said the funding will ensure around 1,000 Rangers from 47 Ranger groups are further supported with jobs on country, and continued access to resources to protect our pristine environments and wildlife.
Rangers work in fire and feral animal management, environmental conservation, and cultural heritage protection.
Nationally the ranger groups are funded by a federal program, but Ms Uibo says the grants go towards one-off needs to facilitate or enhance projects undertaken.
"Our Aboriginal Rangers do a vital job protecting our unique environments to ensure they can be enjoyed by generations to come," she said.
"These grants have been extremely well received by our ranger groups - they have bolstered resources and helped get conservation projects off the ground."
Under the program, two types of grants are available through a competitive, merit-based system including:
Capital funding - which has helped Rangers purchase vehicles and trailers, boats, fire and weed spray units, heavy equipment, information technology and communication systems and infrastructure.
Conservation Land Management funding - which has provided Rangers with assistance for activities including feral animal management, fire and weed management, protection of threatened and 'iconic' species, cultural management, and training and skills development.
The program was first launched under the Territory Labor Government's Protecting Country, Creating Jobs initiative in 2016, which recognises the fundamental role Aboriginal Rangers and Land Managers play in land and sea management, as well as delivering important social and cultural outcomes.
An independent review of the outcomes of the program conducted by Ninti One found that it had made a considerable contribution to land management across the Territory.
Ms Uibo said they also provide the opportunity for new projects for Aboriginal Territorians on country which support land management and conservation jobs.
"The Territory Labor Government is pleased to continue funding these grants for another four years," she said.
Applications for the next round of Aboriginal Ranger Grants will open in the second half of the year.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
- Bookmark katherinetimes.com.au
- Make sure you are signed up for our breaking and regular headlines newsletters
- Follow us on Twitter: @KatherineTimes
- Follow us on Instagram @katherinetimes
- Follow us on Google News
- You can also receive updates straight to your inbox each Friday at 6am from the Katherine Times. To make sure you're up to date with all the news, sign up here.