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Newslines Radio: New houses for a growing Hermannsburg

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Duration: 
7:07
Presenter: 
Nathan Ramsay
Talent: 

Cassie Stuart, Hermannsburg community housing officer, NT
Moana Kantawara, new house tenant, Hermannsburg, NT

14 May 2013
Article
Transcript

Providing communities with well-built houses and infrastructure, and maintaining them, is a critical part of Closing the Gap and will continue as an important part of the Australian Government’s Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory initiative.

Having a house to live in is vital to good health, family, safety, community and jobs.

Newslines Radio recently visited Hermannsburg, known in the local Western Arrarnta language as Ntaria, where more than 30 new houses have been built, as part of the National Partnership Agreement in Remote Indigenous Housing.

Hermannsburg is a growing community located about 130km south-west of Alice Springs. The new houses, along with refurbishments to some of the older houses, are helping to address overcrowding to make sure more families have a safe place to live.

“I was sharing with my two other sisters and our kids and our grandkids. It was just full on. But now it’s much better… I’m really happy to have my own house,” one of the new house tenants, Moana Kantawara said.

PRESENTER: Hi, I’m Nathan Ramsay and you’re listening to Newslines Radio, an Australian Government program on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues.

Providing communities with well-built houses and infrastructure, and maintaining them, is a critical part of Closing the Gap and will continue as an important part of the Australian Government’s Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory initiative.

Having a house to live in is vital to good health, family, safety, community and jobs.

Newslines Radio recently visited Hermannsburg, known in the local Western Arrarnta language as Ntaria, where more than 30 new houses have been built, as part of the National Partnership Agreement in Remote Indigenous Housing.

Hermannsburg is a growing community located about 130km south-west of Alice Springs. The new houses, along with refurbishments to some of the older houses, are helping to address overcrowding to make sure more families have a safe place to live.

Hermannsburg local, Cassie Stuart, works for the MacDonnell Shire Council as a community housing officer. She says the new houses have been very popular.

STUART: They gave us 30 odd new houses, including a one-bedroom quadplex, two-bedroom duplexes and three bedroom houses. This community has just grown so big over the last couple of years when this program first started. So I think everyone’s really happy and they’re excited with the housing.

PRESENTER: The Australian Government’s Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory initiative is investing more in Northern territory remote communities.

Cassie says the housing program is just one of many new services being provided to meet the needs of the growing Hermannsburg population.

STUART: This is a future growth town. This is one of the programs that’s leading up for this community to become a town, a recognised town. So it will be kind of like an outskirt suburb of Alice Springs. Alice Springs has just basically grown into a big city. It’s nearly as big as Darwin, not yet.

And then you’ve got little communities that are just not far from Alice Springs where government see potential growth towns, especially with communities. And it is good in a way. Cause that’s the change, that’s the changes in the life.

I love my community, I love being here. What I like the most is being with my family and being able to help them and help them see it through a different point of view, as the years go by and time changes. I just love it because it’s peaceful. You’re out in the middle of whoop whoop, central Australia.

Like I said, Hermannsburg is just growing so much. There’s just one thing after the other that’s getting done in this community.

PRESENTER: Moana Kantawara, a teacher at the local Ntaria School, is also really pleased to see how much her community is growing and changing.

KANTAWARA: I’ve lived here since I was born and I’m really happy that the community’s growing. A lot of people that’s been here for a long time and comes here and says “oh, is this Hermannsburg? It’s grown a lot!” And I’m really proud of it.

PRESENTER: Moana is one of the tenants who have just moved into a new house, a duplex. She lives in one house with her family, and her two sisters live in the adjoining house with their children. She says it’s a big improvement on the overcrowded house they all lived in before.

KANTAWARA: I was sharing with my two other sisters and our kids and our grandkids and it was just full on. But now it’s much better.

I waited for a year to have a new house and I’m really pleased that I’ve got my own space. And I’m happy that my family is in the same area, two of my sisters. We’re still living together, close by each other. It’s very good. I really love the new house that I’m in. It’s a two bedroom house but I really think it’s suitable for me.

PRESENTER: Moana says she has big plans to add her own personal touches to the building and really make her new house a home.

KANTAWARA: My front yard, when it’s done, I want to put a bit of grass in the front yard and put nice flowers in. I just want to grow a lot of plants, trees, shrubs, flowering plants, because I’m a person that really wants to have my house looking really beautiful and neat, with flowers and stuff and shade trees.

And I really want to work on the front veranda because I want to put outdoor settings and chairs and stuff. I think I’ve got the best view at Sandhill because it’s built up higher and it looks really nice. I’m really happy to have my own house.

PRESENTER: The building and refurbishment program in Hermannsburg was delivered under the Australian Government’s National Partnership Agreement on Remote Indigenous Housing.

To hear about some of the local employment opportunities building and refurbishing houses in Hermannsburg has created, make sure you check out part two of our remote Indigenous housing radio program.

To find out more, check out the links on our website, Indigenous.gov.au.

You can also follow Closing the Gap on Twitter, and like Indigenous.gov.au on Facebook.

I’m Nathan Ramsay, thanks for listening to Newslines Radio.

Stay deadly!

Find out more

Providing communities with well-built houses and infrastructure, and maintaining them, is a critical component of the Australian Government’s Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory initiative.

The recent construction of new houses and the refurbishments on existing houses in Hermannsburg have been funded by the Australian Government under the National Partnership Agreement on Remote Indigenous Housing.

Better housing is a very important part of Closing the Gap. It is vital to good health, family, safety, community and jobs.

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