The Upper Hunter Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Trust was established in 2001 to collect financial contributions from mining companies to be used for the benefit of Aboriginal cultural heritage in the Upper Hunter Valley region.
The Upper Hunter Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Trust was established in 2001 to collect financial contributions from mining companies for the benefit of Aboriginal cultural heritage in the Upper Hunter Valley region.
The Trust’s objectives are to better understand Aboriginal heritage issues in the region, and to benefit the community through skills development.
The Trust was established following extensive consultation with government agencies, Aboriginal groups and mining representatives.
Trust funding has now been allocated, and it is proposed to dissolve the Trust Fund once all funded projects have been completed.
The purpose, objectives and responsibilities for managing the Trust are set out in a Deed of Agreement.
The Trust is administered by a management team including the Deputy Secretary Policy & Strategy, Department of Planning and Environment (Chair), the General Manager of NSW Aboriginal Affairs and a representative of the NSW Trustee and Guardian.
The Trust administers a Fund, which is managed by the NSW Trustee and Guardian, and includes contributions from mining projects approved between 2001 and 2008, and a one-off contribution from the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.
Upper Hunter Valley Aboriginal Cultural Values Mapping Program
Funding of $288,860 was granted to Tocomwall Pty Ltd in 2016 for a research program that will develop a model for engaging with Aboriginal community groups and enhancement of the existing AHIMS database by integrating intangible Aboriginal cultural values. The project team will also create scholarships for two Aboriginal cadets to provide skills and education training.
Aboriginal Education and Skills Development Project
Funding of $200,000 was approved in 2014 for the Aboriginal Resource Group’s two-year Aboriginal Education and Employment Skills Development project. This project supports the objectives of the Trust as it aims to improve Aboriginal training and employment outcomes in the Upper Hunter through educational support for Aboriginal students, including scholarships, mentoring, traineeships and tuition.
Aboriginal Owner Registration Project
Funding of $298,375 was approved in 2014 for the NSW Office of the Registrar’s Aboriginal Owner Registration Project. The project will conduct anthropological, historical and genealogical research to allow Aboriginal people who assert a cultural association with the Upper Hunter to have their names entered on the Register of Aboriginal Owners. This project supports the objectives of the Trust as it is designed to forge a better understanding of Aboriginal heritage in the Upper Hunter.
Adding names to the Register of Aboriginal Owners will allow for better community consultation with relevant Aboriginal owners during the assessment of development proposals.
Upper Hunter Valley Aboriginal Heritage Baseline Study
The Upper Hunter Valley Aboriginal Heritage Baseline Study was completed in 2004 which reviewed existing studies on Aboriginal cultural heritage in the Upper Hunter region and recommended future work to enhance cultural heritage activities.
Upper Hunter Skills Development Centre
The Upper Hunter Skills Development Centre was granted funding in 2008 for two years to provide training to indigenous people to secure jobs in the mining industry. The majority of people trained found jobs in the industry and the Centre still operates and has ongoing partnerships with mining companies.
Page last updated: 14/06/2019