Northern Territory Minister for Workforce Training Selena Uibo
Young Tiwi Islander Reels In New Job
Victor P Taffa
A young Tiwi Islander today skippered his first fishing charter boat, after being the first person to complete a new pilot program creating jobs for Aboriginal school leavers.
“Territory Government’s Number 1 priority is jobs. The AEP is part of our Skilling Territorians initiative, which is building a diverse, skilled workforce of Territorians and preparing them for the jobs of today and the jobs of the future.” Minister for Workforce Training Selena Uibo said.
“In 2017/18, the AEP supported 100 businesses and organisations to enable them to offer training or new job opportunities to more than 1,900 Aboriginal Territorians.”
Northern Territory Government provided a $35,000 grant to Top End fishing charter company Tiwi Island Adventures to support the pilot program, a partnership between the company and Tiwi College to create employment pathways for young Aboriginal people on the islands.
“Partnerships such as this offer Tiwi Islanders opportunities to stay on country with their families, while gaining the skills that lead to enduring employment.” Member for Arafura Lawrence Costa said.
“Unique local knowledge of Melville Island waters that young Aboriginal kids bring also gives the fishermen and women who visit the island a better experience.”
Funding was part of the Territory Government’s Aboriginal Employment Program (AEP), an initiative that supports employers, industry and not-for-profits to provide job and training opportunities for Aboriginal Territorians.
Anthony Guy, 18, took up a full-time position with Tiwi Island Adventures in February.
Anthony began with the Tiwi Junior Guide Program while still at school, a gateway program that trains young fishing guides to work in their traditional waters, alongside guests visiting the Melville Island Lodge for chartered fishing trips.
“Probably the best thing is showing the guests where my country is, a bit of reef, turtles, where I always go hunting.” Anthony Guy said.
“If I didn’t get a job here, I would probably go in to Darwin to find another job but I grew up here, and now, doing this, I reckon I’ll stay here for my whole life.”
After finishing school, thanks to the grant, he went on to train with Tiwi Island Adventures as an Accredited Maritime Coxswain Authority. This month, he qualified to operate charter boats for their fishing tours, a qualification that enables him to charter vessels in all Australian waters.
“Support from the Northern Territory Government has enabled Tiwi Island Adventures employ Anthony in a full-time position to continue his training and attend all the relevant external courses required for him to successfully complete his Maritime Coxswain Authority.” General Manager of Tiwi Islands Adventures Garry Cross said.
“License now enables him to operate as a guide or a skipper of a vessel anywhere in Australia.”
Minister for Workforce Training Selena Uibo and Anthony Guy