About the Whole of Community Engagement Initiative

The Whole of Community Engagement (WCE) initiative is part of the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership previously led by Professor Steven Larkin (2010-2015) at Charles Darwin University. The initiative is funded under the Australian Government's Higher Education Participation & Partnerships Programme (HEPPP) and commenced in 2014.

About the Whole of Community Engagement Initiative

Who are we?

The Whole of Community Engagement team is made up of a group of people who are passionate about Indigenous education, leadership and aspirations. The team consists of 30 Indigenous and non-Indigenous researchers, professionals and academics, based either on CDU campuses or in remote communities.

What is the aim of the initiative?

The Whole of Community Engagement initiative is working with 6 remote Indigenous communities across the Northern Territory to find ways that strengthen  pathways into higher education.The intent is to promote long term social, economic and educational benefits through meaningful, bottom-up community engagement. These communities are:

  • Galiwin’ku
  • Gunbalanya
  • Maningrida
  • Tennant Creek
  • Yirrkala
  • Yuendumu

What are the objectives of the Whole of Community Engagement initiative?

The Whole of Community Engagement initiative objectives are to:

Using whole-of-community engagement strategies, inspire six targeted remote and very remote Indigenous communities to include higher education among their normal expectations, by: 

  • Exploring current community perspectives of higher education, and linking with existing strategies to improve quality of life;
  • Co-creating mutually beneficial and sustainable relationships with relevant partners and stakeholders; and
  • Identifying means for making education relevant and culturally and physically accessible

with a view to establishing strong and sustainable educational pathways from early childhood to lifelong post-secondary education.

WCE logo created by Indigenous artist Jessica Sariago<br> WCE logo created by Indigenous artist Jessica Sariago

Our logo

The Whole of Community Engagement initiative (WCE) logo has been created to illustrate the shared vision of the groups involved in the project and it shows the unity and harmony of the community groups working together. The design was created by Darwin based Indigenous artist Jessica Sariago, who has Djaru heritage from the WA Kimberley region under the direction of the Whole of Community Engagement team.

Read the meaning of WCE logo in its full extent Meaning of WCE logo: definition


Our partners

We are working in partnership with a number of organisations who have expertise in Indigenous education, knowledges, leadership and engagement. 

Our key partners are:


Our approaches

Our engagement approach involves working with local leaders, researchers and other stakeholders to guide project directions at the local level.

Community based staff are leading consultations with elders, leaders, families, schools, shires, youth groups, and other government and non-government organisations. These consultations are critical for understanding educational perspectives, identifying enablers and barriers to participation and developing solutions appropriate to the community context.

30 January 2017

Whole of Community Engagement Initiative

Whole of Community Engagement Initiative

The Whole of Community Engagement (WCE) initiative has been operating through the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership at Charles Darwin University for the past two and half years.

23 January 2017

Evaluating WCE

We have been working hard with our partners and stakeholders to get feedback and to document and share our key findings and achievements.

Charles Darwin UniversityAustralian Centre for Indigenous Knowledges & EducationBatchelor InstituteNAILSMANTG

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