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Cultural centre to employ more than 30

Toby HusseyAlbany Advertiser
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The proposed indigenous Australian culture and learning centre on the Albany waterfront could create more than 30 permanent jobs in its first year.

That’s the plan of the Southern Aboriginal Corporation, which last week announced the purchase of vacant land on the eastern side of Anzac Peace Park, where it will build the Kairli Cultural and Language Centre.

The centre was expected to be built in two stages, and SAC chief executive Asha Bhat estimated the KCLC would create 34 jobs in its first year.

Up to 24 of those could be for Aboriginal Australian people.

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Ms Bhat also revealed her organisation had paid for the land out of its own pocket, repudiating suggestions the purchase was a result of a government hand-out.

“Like non-Aboriginal people, Aboriginal people and migrants also contribute to the economy,” she said.

“People should stop making assumptions that we use taxpayers’ money for all our projects.

“This centre is another step towards ‘closing the gap’ in outcomes between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians.”

Ms Bhat revealed the venue would create a space to teach Noongar language and host cultural workshops, as well as provide a space for local indigenous artists to display their work.

“The project will benefit the whole region,” she said.

“The Kairli Cultural and Language Centre is perfectly positioned to be a vibrant hub of activity for tourists and locals seeking to experience the rich culture of the Noongar people.”

She could not say when construction was expected to begin or what the total cost of the project would be.

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