Whole of Community Engagement Initiative Blog

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Posted on 08 September, 2016

Strategic Priority Project for Language Literacy and Numeracy in the NT

The Whole of Community Engagement (WCE) has received a clear message when working closely with Indigenous leaders and six remote NT communities over the past two and a half years - being able to speak, read, write, learn and communicate in English, and to apply these skills in life, is viewed as essential by those who have educational aspirations for self and family. In fact, LLN has emerged as a major theme in each of the communities where we work:

I am urging and asking that we need support (for LLN) from the University to collaborate. - Dr Lawurrpa Maypilama, 2016
I need to have training so that I can get entrance and also an overview of what is happening in the community so I can understand, get the message, and pass it on to the community, or the next generation to come, for their future needs. - Stephen Dhamarrandji 2016
I am recording my voice to tell you that we at Yalu want a course to be run here at Galiwin’ku, at Yalu for the community and for staff. That is what we would love to do… could CDU come and support us, and lift us up, and put us on the right path to upgrade our literacy. We want Teamwork, manymak - thank you. - Gundjarranbuy, 2016

Proficiency in LLN opens up opportunities, supports self-determination and increases our power to make choices about life. It is the backbone for many Indigenous people living in remote Australia to pursue their educational aspirations. Through talking with community members, practitioners, educationalists and organisations, the need for more resources, appropriate programs and an adult LLN Strategy for the NT have emerged as key priorities.

Through WCE initiative, we have been implementing a Strategic Priority Project (SPP) about improving Adult English literacy for remote communities. A small Consultative Group drives the project in consultation with a group including some Indigenous elders from the WCE team. The initial work of the consultative group has included mapping remote Indigenous LLN needs. This included a consultative workshop held on the 14th of July, which attracted 25 staff, managers and executives from across CDU. The workshop gave representatives from VET and Higher Education an overview of the services that CDU currently delivers. Together participants looked at the extent to which these services are reaching Indigenous learners who come from remote areas and whose English literacy is poor. 

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