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Mingaletta Supports Aboriginal Children

Updated: Apr 23



Today’s post is quite special: it comes from halfway around the world via Mark Champley, an honoured friend of ITMP. Mark is a highly respected Indigenous leader of Kamilaroi and Wiradjuri ancestry. He has worked tirelessly to advocate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in Australia and developed a groundbreaking workplace reverse-mentoring program that several Australian companies have adopted and found great success with. Mark connected with ITMP during his Churchill Trust Fellowship in 2023, when he traveled across the globe to meet with groups working to further reconciliation efforts. Mark visited Vancouver and met with ITMP to share advice, support and ideas for the program as well as speak at workshops and a public talk. Mark also attended the Stɑl̓əw̓ Pow wow and Orange Shirt Day events with ITMP members, witnessing the strength of Indigenous communities here and current reconciliation efforts in Canada. There are many parallels between the colonial histories of Australia and Canada, and Mark continues to inspire ITMP with his work and feature in ITMP workshops. Please enjoy this highlight of his latest accomplishments with the Mingaletta Community Centre!


Mingaletta (meaning ‘meeting place’) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation is a non-profit and voluntarily operated community-based organization. It has been providing a wide range of services that support and assist First Nations Peoples residing on the Central Coast of New South Wales (NSW) for about 25 years. This area has one of the largest Aboriginal populations in the state of NSW. 


The Mingaletta Community Centre located 6 Sydney Avenue, Umina Beach, NSW Australia provides its members and other community groups a safe meeting place and referral hub for education, health and well-being, cultural programs through consultative services and community activities. It was a very special occasion welcoming Matt Longland, Graham Bradshaw, Leanne Knox from Sydney Trains and many of our Transport and NSW TrainLink family, to the Mingaletta community on the Central Coast of NSW Thursday 22nd February 2024.


The purpose of the visit was to present 50 laptops to some of the disadvantaged Aboriginal students attending the many local schools in the area. It was so moving seeing the faces on the children receiving their very first ever laptops. Bridging the digital divide is crucial for ensuring equitable access to education opportunities. This grassroots involvement will assist these students on their educational journeys. It was heartwarming seeing all the Elders there encouraging and supporting the children, who are our future leaders. 

My late mother, Aunty Fay was one of the founding members of Mingaletta and I felt her spirit with me on the day.


Mark Champley

Mingaletta Treasurer and Board Member

 

Author: Mark Champley, Mingaletta Treasurer and Board Member

(with intro by Basil Giannopoulos)

Images courtesy of Mark Champley

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