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Feature 9: Youth Engagement in Native Title project

During 2018–2019 the Youth Engagement in Native Title project was established to address the opportunities and challenges for youth in native title and what younger people need to participate further in native title. The project involves a research collaboration with Macquarie Law School and the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR) at the  Australian National University and a community partnership with Bigambul Native Title Aboriginal Corporation (BNTAC) in Queensland.

In 2019–2020, facilitation training was delivered to the BNTAC youth directors, and workshops on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander governance and the native title system were held for young Bigambul people at the inaugural Bigambul Youth Summit, held in Goondiwindi in September 2019. The summit program and facilitation plan were co-designed with BNTAC, and the AIATSIS project team provided facilitation training and mentored BNTAC’s two youth directors, who took on leadership roles at the summit. One of the youth directors  said afterwards:

I loved being back on Country with everybody and seeing people’s faces who’d never been on Country before and hearing all the stories, I really did enjoy facilitating and working with you because that was a very different experience that I’ve never done before, but it’s definitely given me the confidence to want to do it again.

BNTAC have since been asked to assist other PBCs in southern Queensland to develop their own youth summits and will share their work with other PBCs and traditional owner corporations.

Further case studies are in development with Aboriginal Affairs NSW Local Knowledge Exchange, the First People’s Assembly of Victoria and Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QLD), although progress has been slowed by COVID-19 travel restrictions limiting fieldwork.

Last updated: 15 October 2020