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New Indigenous Protected Area creates opportunities for Yappala community
The recent declaration of the Yappala Properties Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) is not only preserving and strengthening local culture and environment, it’s providing employment opportunities for the whole community.
With the declaration, three part-time Indigenous ranger positions have been created. The rangers will be based near Hawker in the Southern Flinders Ranges of South Australia. They will be responsible for fencing and feral animal control to protect the vulnerable yellow-footed rock-wallaby, and identifying and protecting important cultural heritage sites.
The South Australian Aboriginal Land Trust, which is providing support to the community to manage the IPA, helped to recruit the three rangers from Port Augusta and the Yappala community.
Adnyamathanha Elder, Alwyn McKenzie, says his community’s patience and persistence had led to the creation of the IPA.
“We have been planning for this for over ten years, and now we have some certainty and support to manage our land,” Mr McKenzie said.
“But more importantly, we have an opportunity for our young people to work on the IPA and build their land management skills.”
Deirdre McKenzie, from the Yappala community, said the three rangers were committed to their new jobs and keen to get started.
“They have got their licences and they are getting training. They have a chance to change their lives and be role models for the other young ones,” Ms McKenzie said.
Alwyn Mvkenzie agreed.
“It’s great that our community, through this newly-declared IPA, is able to give something back to Australian society,” he said.