27 October 2020
The NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) would like to congratulate the Coffs Harbour and District Local Aboriginal Land Council (CHDLALC) for its successful joint application to the NSW Regional Growth Tourism Environment Fund (RGTEF).
The RGTEF will invest $5.5 million into a major eco-tourism project, which will be jointly managed by the CHDLALC and the Bularri Muurlay Nyanggan Aboriginal Corporation (BMNAC).
The CHDLALC will provide land in the pristine bush setting of Coffs Creek, where 30 self-contained eco-pods will be built for tourist accommodation.
The pods will complement BMNAC’s current tourism experiences and the Nyanggan Gapi cafe at Sealy Lookout in the Orara East State Forest.
The NSWALC Councillor for the Mid-North Coast Peter Smith says he’s pleased to see exciting new growth in Aboriginal-led tourism in his region.
“The eco-pods will provide training and employment opportunities for local Aboriginal people in the hospitality and tourism sector, which is excellent news. Aboriginal cultural eco-tourism is a valuable developing industry for the local community and an opportunity to showcase our culture, skills and expertise.
“As Councillor, one of my goals is to support our people to achieve economic independence through access to employment and training in growth industries,” he said.
The Coffs Harbour and District Local Aboriginal Land Council was successful in gaining a NSWALC Business Development Grant, which assisted with the commencement of the development application process and an initial biodiversity assessment, as part of the joint business case with BMNAC.
NSWALC Chair Anne Dennis says the project and the partnership are highly significant.
“The eco-tourism project aims to capture the Aboriginal tourist market by immersing Coffs Harbour in culture, with local Aboriginal organisations leading the way.
“I am delighted that NSWALC’s grant has assisted CHDLALC to begin what I am sure will be a very bright and successful journey for them,” she said.
Enquiries: Contact Sam Gilchrist in the NSWALC Program Implementation Unit on 02 9689 4444.