One of the main challenges for staff at the Hotline is making sure that the database of providers is accurate and contains up-to-date and helpful information on all available literacy/ numeracy providers, and that we have an understanding of some of the challenges for those who are seeking literacy help. This has been a particular problem in relation to provision in remote Indigenous communities, where provision is sparse and where modes of delivery are often quite different from those in mainstream Australia. For that reason, Vanessa welcomed the recent invitation to visit several providers, community centres and key people in the NT last month, in order to get a better understanding of some examples of the types of provision there, and the ways in which the Hotline may be able to help promote some other forms of provision.
'Year of Life Long Learning' event in Yuendumu
The visit began at an event to mark the Year of Life Long Learning (YOLL), at the adult learning centre in Yuendumu, in the Tanami Desert. Yuendumu is home to the Warlpiri people.
Teacher Barbara Martin (left), reads with Kelly Napanangka Michael, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-13/yuendumu-higher-learning-opens-english-warlpiri/9756324
Yuendumu’s adult learning center, the Pina Pina Jarrinjaku, is funded by the Warlpiri Education and Training Trust and is run by Warlpiri Youth Development Aboriginal Corporation. The aim of the centre is to provide a flexible and responsive approach to adult learning, integrating community priorities. What was very clear from the speeches is the importance Warlpiri people place on learning and adult education. The Bilingual Resource Development Unit at the Yuendumu School collaborated with the Pina Pina Jarrinjaku to celebrate learning along the life span. Two of the school’s senior Warlpiri staff, teachers Yamurna Napurrurla Oldfield and Barbara Napanangka Martin, addressed the gathering to explain how the learning centre operates and provides a safe and supported learning space.
Yamurna Napurrurla Oldfield and Barbara Napanagka Martin
It was a wonderfully positive opening with visitors from all over Australia, including Shadow Minister for Education, Tanya Plibersek, Shadow Minister for Schools Andrew Giles MP, Warren Snowden Minister for Lingiari, NT and Jenny McCaffer CEO Adult Learning Australia.
“The learning Centre is an opportunity for young people here to gain certificates, degrees and other courses. It's an important initiative to help with closing the gap. Education is a key part in making the next generation of leaders” Warlpiri Elder Otto Jungarrayi Sims
“We take this learning very seriously. It's very important our adults can learn simple plain English. A reader makes a person a leader in our community." Eddie Jampijinpa Robertson from 26Ten Yuendumu
"When kids see their parents, aunty and uncle reading, they see it is important. The example you set to young ones by taking steps in education couldn’t be setting a better example.” - Tanya Plibersek
The opening was followed by a tour of the community including the wonderful Bilingual Resource Development Institute. Ormay Nantala Gallager explained the process of developing bilingual resources and planning tools customized to the needs of individual learners.
Ormay Nantala Gallagher shows bilingual resources she has developed to Dallas Wellington from TAFENSW and Hotline Manager Vanessa Iles.