Joint Media Release with Member For Flynn Ken O’Dowd
Additional support will be provided to more than 1000 First Australians to help them complete their school education, thanks to a grant from the Coalition Government to the Cathy Freeman Foundation.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs and Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, who recently approved the funding, said the investment would provide in-school, after-school and community support to improve literacy, numeracy, behaviour and attendance rates for the students – including students attending school in Woorabinda, Queensland.
“The Turnbull Coalition is committed to doing all it can to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children have the opportunity to fulfil their potential – and we know this starts with regular attendance at school,” Minister Scullion said.
“I look forward to working with the Cathy Freeman Foundation to see this investment deliver better outcomes in Indigenous communities including in Central Queensland and the Top End of the Northern Territory.”
Liberal National Party Member for Flynn, Mr Ken O’Dowd MP, said the funding would be a great boost for the Woorabinda community and help to lift local school attendance rates.
“I am proud to represent a seat that has a strong Indigenous community and I recognise the importance of a good education in our efforts to improve outcomes for our First Australians,” Mr O’Dowd said.
“I am pleased to be able to have secured this investment for Indigenous Australians in Flynn.”
Foundation Chairwoman, Ms Cathy Freeman, welcomed the additional funding and said it would support her organisation’s work aimed at ensuring Indigenous children realise their full potential by getting a decent education.
“Indigenous children can aspire to be anything they want to be and a good school education is a key to unlocking this potential. My foundation works with Indigenous children from pre-school through to Year 12 to encourage them to attend school every day,” Ms Freeman said.
“I am personally grateful to Minister Scullion for his tremendous support and guidance in helping the foundation continue its critical work.”
Woorabinda is located 230 kilometres west of Gladstone.
The grant to the Cathy Freemen Foundation has been funded out of existing funding in the Indigenous Advancement Strategy.