3 August 2016
Land Rights helps build tourism industry in Worimi country
Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council's (LALC) Sand Dune Adventures has reached a new milestone by winning a string of tourism awards in Port Macquarie.
The popular tourism experience won a Regional Award in the North Coast and the Legendary Pacific Coast Tourism Awards as well as a Gold for Excellence in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism and a Silver in the Adventure category.
Sand Dune Adventures is now eligible to enter the NSW Tourism Awards which will be held in November.
NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) Chair Roy Ah-See said Worimi LALC was a leading example of how Land Rights was delivering positive economic outcomes for New South Wales.
"Back in 2007, Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council was successful in having land at Stockton Bight returned to Aboriginal ownership.
"The members of Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council worked hard to identify opportunities to promote Aboriginal culture and provide economic benefits for the Aboriginal community and the regional economy.
"Over the past seven years, hundreds of thousands of tourists have taken to quad bikes and immersed themselves in Worimi culture through Sand Dune Adventures.
"What Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council has achieved in creating jobs, increasing tourism numbers and promoting rich Aboriginal culture shows the strength of our unique system of Land Rights in New South Wales," Cr Ah-See said.
Worimi LALC Chief Executive Officer Andrew Smith said the tourism awards rewarded the hard work and skill of the team at Sand Dune Adventures.
"Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council is a major player in the local Hunter economy and we continue to grow our tourism business domestically and internationally.
"We now employ 15 people in a range of positions - as tour guides, in sales and marketing, administration and maintenance.
"Sand Dune Adventures has been promoted throughout Australia as well as attending Industry Trade Missions and other tourism conferences in China, Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand and India.
"It's incredibly rewarding for our Board, staff and community to have a successful not-for-profit social enterprise operating that is 100 percent Aboriginal-owned and operated, shares culture and plays a major part in the local and State economy," Mr Smith said.
Media contact: Andrew Williams 0429 585 291