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You are here: Home / UrbanGrowth, SMDA & RWA Plans & Activities / Government, UG, SMDA & RWA Statements / 2005 / Redfern-Waterloo UPDATE NOVEMBER 2005

Redfern-Waterloo UPDATE NOVEMBER 2005

This is a Text copy of the Redfern Waterloo UPDATE November 2005. This Update deals with the sale of Redfern School and the launch of the National Centre of Excellence for Aboriginal Youth under the ILC and the Exodus Tutorial centre programme. The Update also looks at Progress on Human Services Plan and the $2 Million Funding for Youth. Other items include: Celebrating our Diversity; Creating Better Public Housing; Midnight Basketball at PCYC; support for Blackout Violence and the RWA taking DA approval on developments under $5m on State Significant sites.

National Centre of Excellence for Aboriginal Youth launched

Former Redfern school site to be transformed.

The Redfern-Waterloo Authority has negotiated a landmark agreement for the Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC) to purchase the 1.6 hectare former Redfern Public School site. The existing sporting grounds and buildings will be transformed by the ILC under a $25 million project to develop a centre of Aboriginal cultural, social and sporting excellence.

The proposed National Aboriginal Youth Development Centre will be a showcase for Indigenous people and the entire Redfern-Waterloo community and will greatly assist the area’s urban renewal.

The Exodus Foundation run by Reverend Bill Crews, also proposes to set up its successful Tutorial Centre program on the site, which helps young people aged 10-14 to improve iteracy, school attendance and behaviour.

ILC Chairperson, Shirley McPherson, and the Minister for Redfern-Waterloo, Frank Sartor, signed an agreement at the school site on 30 October commencing the sale process, expected to take from 4 to 6 months.

“The ILC believes this is a significant opportunity to create a national hub for Indigenous sport and culture by refurbishing the school and the adjacent oval,” Ms McPherson said.

“We anticipate children will begin accessing services at the site from mid-2006.”

Mr Sartor said that the new Centre “will form the heart of a new youth precinct for the local community, as outlined in the RWA’s Human Services Plan” and confirmed that the Murawina

Aboriginal Child Care Centre will maintain its long-term lease under any sale agreement.

“Murawina will be complemented by the presence of the Exodus Foundation, which has already made a real contribution to keeping kids from Redfern-Waterloo in school through its Ashfield tutoring program.”

Education Minister Carmel Tebbutt described the agreement reached as “an excellent outcome for the whole community” that would ensure that the former school site will be used for education and community purposes.

Federal Minister for Indigenous affairs, Senator Amanda Vanstone, congratulated the parties for negotiating the deal, which "shows what can be possible where community organisations and State and Federal Governments join forces."

“[The former school site] is prime land in the middle of Sydney that will become a lasting asset for Indigenous people and a focal point for Indigenous culture and achievement in sports” she said.

Immediately following the Government’s announcement of the proposed sale, the RWA commenced relocation discussions with a number of community organisations that have occupied parts of the former school buildings under short term arrangements pending sale of the site.

Redfern Public School closed to students in 2002.

Photo: (L to R back): Reverend Bill Crews, ILC Chair Shirley McPherson, Minister Frank Sartor, Kristina Kenneally MP, Dalara Williams, (L to R front): Madison Ella-Duncan, Katlyn Nimmett.

Photo: NSW Minister Frank Sartor and ILC Chairperson Shirley McPherson sign the agreement.

Photo: The former Redfern Public School is set to be transformed into the National Aboriginal Youth Development Centre.

Investing in Redfern’s Future

The Indigenous Land Corporation, an Australian Government statutory authority which already owns properties in Redfern, was established by the Keating Federal Government following the High Court’s historic Mabo decision which first recognised native title in Australian common law. The ILC was set up to buy land for Indigenous people in places where native title has been extinguished. Further details about the ILC can be found at its website at www.ilc.gov.au


Need Assistance?

For more information or to send us your feedback please contact the Redfern-Waterloo Authority, Level 11,Tower 2, 1 Lawson Square, Redfern Tel: (02) 9202 9100 Fax: (02) 9202 9111 Mail: PO Box 3332, Redfern NSW 2016 Email: redfernwaterloo@rwa.nsw.gov.au

Internet: www.redfernwaterloo.com.au


Progress on Human Services Plan

On 13 October, the Minister for Redfern-Waterloo, Frank Sartor, released the Draft Redfern-Waterloo Human Services Plan for a month long period of public consultation.

Submissions received will be taken into consideration by the Government when approving the final draft of the Human Services Plan.

The main features of the Plan include:

• A focus on better outcomes for people

• Making access to services easier

• Improving service delivery

• Cutting red tape for government and non government organisations

• Setting up "one stop shops" for youth services, family violence and health services

• 10 priority areas and more than 60 specific actions for change

• Greater accountability to the community.

The Redfern-Waterloo Human Services Plan is being developed in two phases. Phase One will cover families and children, young people, Aboriginal services and health services. Phase two will cover homeless people, the aged, people with disabilities and migrant communities.

The RWA will implement the actions in the Plan over the next three years. A four stage process is proposed:

• Negotiating change

• Delivering the actions

• Integrating human services

• Evaluating results.

A key role for the RWA will be to broker partnerships with the private sector to provide support for local initiatives including:

• Cultural programs for youth

• Sporting activities

• Literacy campaigns for preschool children

• Micro-enterprise development.

Photo: The RWA’s meeting in late October at Redfern Town Hall to discuss the Human Services Plan.

$2 Million Funding for Youth

More than $2 million over three years will be re-allocated to facilities and services for young people in Redfern Waterloo as part of the RWA’s drive to find better ways of dealing with current issues affecting young people in the area.

Government agencies and non-government service providers in the area will be consulted on the best way to commit the funding, exemplifying the benefits of reforming Redfern-Waterloo’s human services system.


Celebrating our Diversity

One of Redfern-Waterloo’s greatest strengths is the area’s cultural diversity. More than 40% of the people that live in this community were born overseas.

To celebrate this diversity the RWA was pleased to sponsor two wonderful community events.

The students of Alexandria Park Community School held their multicultural event on 10 November showcasing the school success as a proud, thriving and diverse community.

The Waterloo Neighbourhood Advisory Board held a successful multicultural event on Saturday 12 November, attracting neighbours of the Waterloo housing estate with fine food from around the world and entertainment.


Creating Better Public Housing

The NSW Government is to undertake a major refurbishment of the Matavia and Turunga high rise public housing complexes in Waterloo.

The project will convert 28 bed-sit units into improved one bedroom apartments as part of a $30 million plan to improve the standard of public housing in the Central Sydney area.

The bed-sit improvements will include creation of a separate bedroom, refurbished bathroom, new kitchen and carpet.

Current residents will be re-located in the area while the project is underway and will have first option on moving back into the new homes.

Outcomes from the project will be evaluated to determine whether it should be extended to other similar apartments.

Photo:The NSW Government is to undertake major refurbishment of the Matavia and Turunga high rise complexes in Waterloo.

Midnight Basketball at PCYC

Midnight Basketball is coming to Redfern PCYC with a tournament to begin in February 2006. It is being run by a not for profit company and supported by the Sydney Kings and local groups to provide supervised late night recreational activities for the youth of the area.

The RWA is proud to be sponsoring the event with a $5000 donation.

The program will involve young people being able to play competition basketball as well as participating in interactive workshops that will discuss a range of lifestyle issues. It will operate from 7pm on Friday and Saturday nights and transportation is included.

Blackout Violence

The RWA is sponsoring the ‘Plates in the Park’ event at Redfern Park on 1 December to raise awareness and stamp out domestic violence in our community.

The picnic is open to everyone and will include guest speakers and entertainment for young and the young at heart.

The event is organised by Blackout Violence, an innovative program developed in Redfern by Dixie Gordon. Blackout Violence brings together Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal services to address the impacts of domestic violence on inner city and regional Aboriginal communities.

The inaugural campaign in 2004 used the NSW Aboriginal Rugby League Carnival with excellent results to promote the program. Attendees wore purple armbands to demonstrate their united commitment to reduce violence in Aboriginal communities and local support and legal workers distributed purple bags with information and promotional material to women and their families attending the event.


Open for Business

Following delegation from the Minister for Planning, the Redfern Waterloo Authority can now deal directly with development applications on State Significant sites with a capital investment value of less than $5 million. Please contact the RWA’s Planning Manager on 9202 9107 for further information.