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Kirrawe Indigenous Corporation

 

Is a not-for- profit community based organisation providing culturally responsive services to meet the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living on the Gold Coast of Queensland, Australia.  

Kirrawe is a Public Benevolent Institution, Deductable Gift Recipient and has Charity status under both the QLD Collections Act 1966 and Australian Charities and Not-For-Profit Commission (ACNC).

AIM - To be an accountable, responsible, compassionate organisation providing quality services and support to those most in need.  

Kirrawe is dedicated to ‘closing  the gap’ and rebuilding those lives affected by the cycles of inter-generational trauma, alcohol and drug misuse, domestic/family violence, unemployment, poverty, homelessness, child neglect and removal.  

Kirrawe responds to community needs, using strengths based approaches and empowerment strategies to increase clients social and emotional wellbeing.  

Kirrawe provides 'a hand up not a hand out' 

We believe that well functioning families are the cornerstone of our community, and connection to family, community and 'Country' being the birth right of every Indigenous child.  

Kirrawe promotes identity and pride in our First Nations youth.  We want our children to have the same life chances as other Australian children, to grow up at home with their families, get a good education and be proud of their heritage and culture.

LATEST NEWS

Our 'New Chapters' Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative (funded by Department of Employment, Small Business and Training) has had amazing results thanks to Alara, Levi and The Learning Collaborative (RTO). We achieved excellent results and made a difference in the lives of so many Indigenous people, through increased  employment outcomes and life changes.

Particularly powerful are our culture camps which focus on connecting to Country, building relationships, positive sense of self, increasing self esteem and promoting identity as First Nations peoples.

The Kirrawe Kidz Program (funded by Prime Minister & Cabinet) also had excellent outcomes thanks to Shaun, Toni and Aunty Laura.  We would like to congratulate Eric and Hayden, two fine young men who made us proud when they played in the Commonwealth Games Didgeridoo Orchestra, and for continuing to achieve great things in their lives.

Over two years  young people in the program enjoyed sessions with bush craft, traditional art and crafts, storytelling, playing the didgeridoo (boys), singing in language (girls) and growing healthy foods at the Community Garden.  They also attended camps and afterschool homework clubs.

We held a one day Didgeridoo Workshop run by Leeton, where each boy received his own instrument. They were taught the basics of making sound and decorated it using their own style of art, making it truly their own.

As with most Charities we rely on the goodwill of others, to help us help those most in need 

We are currently seeking donations for:

Kirrawe Indigenous Mentoring Service (KIMS)

We currently receive a small grant from the Commonwealth Community Fund which has given this program a kick start, however there are so many young people who are needing support to deal with everyday life stressors. Therefore we want to expand the program to run more camps and provide one on one support. To do this we need a Coordinator to recruit, train and support the Mentors.

In 2014, Kirrawe ran a pilot project for KIMS over a three month period using five Mentors and five Mentees, and the findings gave a clear indication of the benefits to our young people:

  • After attending the program the mentees displayed more positive behaviours at home and in the community. There were less suspensions from school and attendance at schools increased. 
  • We are continuing with this work but need more Mentors

http://www.healthygc.com.au/Programs-Services/Innovation-Grants.aspx#Kirrawe

Rosey's Cottage

This project is to provide a facility to support Mum's and bubs and stop the child welfare system removing newborns from the delivery room. This practice has been going on for decades.

To prevent the forced removals of 'at risk'  babies, we want to give Mum's an opportunity to prove they can parent their bubs in a safe, supportive environment. This is a new intiative, but badly needed.

There has been an overrepresentation of Indigenous children in the care and protection system across Australian for decades, raising issues of another 'Stolen Generation'. Many of these children languising in care and not having regular or meaningful contact with Kin.

According to information from the Queensland Government, in 2018 there were 4106 children and young people living away from home. This is 45.3% of all children in care in QLD yet they make up only 8.5% of the population aged 0-17 years.

The number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children living away from home has been steadly increasing each year: as in 2014 (3531), 2015 (3699), 2016 (3826), 2017 (4016), even though reforms have taken place and millions of $$ are poured into the sector each year.

https://www.csyw.qld.gov.au/child-family/our-performance/representation-aboriginal-torres-strait-islander-children

We believe the Rosey's Cottage principle comes at a critical time as it aims to prevent newborns being removed at birth due to protective concerns - forever breaking that important bond between mother and child.

To achieve this we require a facility with suitable accommodation, from which to run the program in the greater Brisbane/Gold Coast area. We also require funding so we can pay for:

  • Suitably qualified and skilled staff to ensure babies are safe and mothers are supported
  • Operational costs/insurances to ensure we meet our legislative and risk management obligations 
  • The facility to have enough rooms to house six  mothers and bubs at a time

Due to the nature of Child Safety we cannot operate on volunteers as they will not allow the mothers and babies to stay. Therefore skilled and qualified staff are mandatory.

This does however come at a cost, but the benefits far outweight this, as bubs can remain with Mum and not become a statistic of child removal.

Community Support

The Rosey's Cottage Program was officially endorsed by Indigenous and non-Indigenous community organisations, local Elders and other participants attending the Indigenous Child Protection Forum held during Child Protection Week.  

  • The principles of Rosey's Cottage is that it will be a culturally safe and comfortable residential facility
  • Providing 24 hour support to Indigenous women who are at risk of having their newborn infants removed at birth and placed in foster care 
  • Currently there is no facility in South East Queensland providing this type of service

While removing 'at risk' Indigenous newborns from hospital has been a practice for many years, all the evidence around the 'Stolen Generations' acknowledge that this is not the way to proceed. 

Kirrawe wants to break the matrix and give these Mum's a chance to prove they have the capability to keep their child safe: 

  • Qualified staff to assist with nurturing activities such as breastfeeding, bathing and interacting with the infant
  • Services will be engaged to work with the mothers and check the health of their babies
  • Training to increase parenting skills, manage relationships and provide opportunities for Mum's to later gain employment will be implemented
  • Through effective case management, clients will be referred on to relevant services (housing, health, family support programs) prior to them leaving Rosey's Cottage  
  • The three month live in program will include skills to assist raising a child (healthy body, mind, soul and spirit), budgeting and other training to enable mums to continue to care for their child after leaving the program

 

To prevent another 'Stolen Generation' we need your help!

Donations are urgently needed to rent, buy or build a facility and employ skilled and compassionate staff to support these mothers:  

  • Staff will be onsite 24 hours per day to assist mums keep these babies safe and out of the state welfare system 

Both the Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities see this program as a priority. 

 

For those in business, other organisations or philanthropists, who wish to donate to these causes or partner with us to get Rosey's Cottage project off the ground, we have all financial documents for the past six years. This shows sound financial management practices are in place at all times.

  • As a registered Charity our paperwork, funding and receipts are all checked off by the Auditor.
  • Paperwork is available on request.

 

There are three other ways you can help:     

Bank  - Westpac 

Name Kirrawe Gift Fund Account

BSB - 034 159

Account - 157 152

Please note: As Kirrawe is a DGR and registered Charity all donations over $2.00 are tax deductable.

EVENTS....

Kirrawe facilitated a Workshop to discuss the 'Current and Emerging Issues in Indgenous Child Protection'.  This forum provided an opportunity for Elders, community members, not for profit organisations and government representatives to come together, talk about these issues and put forward strategies to address the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in the welfare system. From this Workshop the idea for Rosey's Cottage came about.

Kirrawe hosted a NAIDOC luncheon and Workshop at the Labrador Community Hub with local Elder Aunty Joyce Summers presenting 'Spiritual Connection to Country'.

Kirrawe held another successful Indigenous Art, Craft and Food Festival 'Stand Up Against Violence' at the Labrador Community Hub.  The Festival was held on National Sorry Day, at the end of Domestic Violence Awareness Month and marked the beginning of National Reconciliation Week. Over 260 people attended from as far away as Brisbane and Northern NSW.

Kirrawe also hosted a National Sorry Day Event with a presentation by Ms Kathy Frankland (DATSIMA) ‘A brief History of Government Administration of

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in Queensland' followed by a buffet luncheon.
 

Funding

The Directors would like to acknowledge and thank DEST for our 'New Chapters' funding; Prime Minister & Cabinet for their support with the Kirrawe Kidz Program; Commonwealth Community Fund; ETC Community Fund.

Other funding bodies over the years have included Medicare Local, the Queensland Community Benefit Fund, Queensland Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services, Queensland Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Multicultural Affairs, Queensland Department of Education, Training and Employment, Gold Coast City Council, FaHCSIA, The Healing Foundation, Stolen Generation Alliance, Child Protection Week Committee, the Rotary Club of Southport and Wesley Mission.  

Corporate Governance...............

Kirrawe continues to maintain sound Governance practices and financial accountability with unqualified audits each year (documents available).

Two Directors have successfully completed Introduction to Governance and Cert IV in Business (Governance) through ORIC.  

Training through ORIC will continue to be attended by Directors to increase their knowledge and skill in managing a community based organisation.

Kirrawe also continues to comply with ORIC and the ACNC our national accountability systems.

 

 

Acknowledge Traditional Custodians

Kirrawe would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land that we are operating on the Yugambeh nation.

Acknowledgement to the Indigenous Artists

Kirrawe Indigenous Corporation would like to acknowledge that the artwork used in this website were created by local Indigenous Artists  Lionel Phillips and Liz Childs. www.kiarmadesigns.com.au

Disclaimer: When viewing this website please be mindful that it may contain images and/or names of people who have since passed away

 

Latest News


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