Navy Helps Support Young Indigenous Australians In New Development Course

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29th October 2010, 01:03pm - Views: 526

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Minister for Defence Science and Personnel

Fri, 29 Oct, 2010



Navy helps support young Indigenous Australians in new

development course 

The Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, Warren Snowdon, today

congratulated a group of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults who

graduated from the Navy’s first Defence Indigenous Development Program.

“Today’s ceremony saw 25 young Indigenous adults from across northern Queensland

graduate from the seven-month course, and more than half of them recommended to

join the Navy.

“This is a significant milestone for participants, their families, the far north

Queensland community and the Department of Defence,” Mr Snowdon said.

“The Defence Indigenous Development Program – Navy has challenged the

participants on a number of levels. They have had to do training in literacy and

numeracy, marine studies, fitness and life skills.

“These graduates have sailed on STS Young Endeavour, completed a boot camp at

HMAS Cerberus and undertaken work experience at HMAS Cairns. They also

completed Access 10 training and components of a Boat Coxswains ticket through

Tropical Far North Queensland TAFE,” he said.

The participants demonstrated their teamwork ability and an aptitude to thrive in a

military environment whilst training at the Djarragun College Wilderness Centre. 

“On a recent visit to Cairns, I was able to observe first-hand this excellent program. The

participants’ experiences have developed both their leadership qualities and a personal

sense of camaraderie. I am hopeful this course has given them the confidence and fitness

to embark on a career in the Royal Australian Navy, and the participants have been

provided with advice and guidance on the Navy recruitment process,” Mr Snowdon said. 

“While not all participants will join the Navy or the other services, the important point

to make is, the program has equipped them with skills and experiences that will

enable them to gain employment in the wider community.

“I am excited about what the future may hold for these young Australians and I wish

them all well for their future endeavours,” he said.

The Defence Indigenous Development Program – Navy is a joint initiative between the

Department of Defence and the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace

Relations. It also forms part of the Australian Defence Force’s Indigenous Employment


The Defence Reconciliation Action Plan 2010-2014 was developed following broad

consultation across Defence and Reconciliation Australia and provides action plans to

implement employment opportunities and retention initiatives for Indigenous

Australians who choose Defence as their employer. 

Graduates are from towns such as Rockhampton, and communities such as Bamaga and

Boigu Island. Media can request to interview participants and photos will be available.

Media contacts: 

Alice Plate: 0400 045 999 (Snowdon)

Petty Officer Shayne Firth 0419 895 808 (DIDP – for interviews with participants) 

Defence Media: 02 6127 1999

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