He National Native Title Conference 2014 was held in Coffs Harbour

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he National Native Title Conference 

2014 was held in Coffs Harbour 

on the traditional lands of the 

Gumbaynggir people. On 24 December 

2013, the New South Wales Land and 

Environment Court handed down the 

long awaited decision, regarding the 

area known as Red Rock Beach, ruling in 

favour of the Coffs Harbour and District 

Local Aboriginal Council. The original 

including beach and surrounding areas 

between the townships of Red Rock and 

Corindi (approximately 3.7km of beach 

and foredune). This decision could prove 

deemed essential for public purpose. 

call a homeland name for the Clarence 

a hospital. We could go onto the front 

veranda of the hospital, but you had to 

inside the hospital, and that caused some 

things to show people. 

no fridge, nothing. We used to have a 

the camp, and when you got wallaby or 

couple of days, and when you wanted 

on and we made a tin hut, we used to 

tin hut. Then we moved on and we had 

the wooden huts, built them out of wood. 

We were connected to a lot of people

people up further by Yugal, those places, 

and then asbestos mining was going on 

up there. So we used to get the sheets of 

the way through, we started from way 

started off.

I have come through life as a 

Gumbaynggirr, the Gumbaynggirr tribe, 

when I got out of school. And I went to 

So I had been gone for a fair while. In 

go home, because my people are still 

every Aboriginal organisation that was 

set up was what was called a Housing 

Cooperative. And I used to wonder “Why 

are we just Housing Cooperatives?” 

I did was to sit and write down all these 

rules and things to register a corporation 

that would cover employment, education, 

training, housing, everything, and 

understand why we were just worried 

about housing. I actually established then 

Cultural Centre. In 1982 myself and 

a couple of others that are deceased 

Council in Coffs Harbour (Coffs Harbour 

and District Local Aboriginal Land 

Council) under the Aboriginal Lands Right 

Act 1983 (NSW) that came out. Then in 

had to be given better, and I established 

that company is going to put respite 



he Australian Charities and 

opened its doors on 


All organisations that had been granted 

charity tax concessions by the ATO before 

then were automatically registered with 

the ACNC as a charity. 

Since then any organisation wanting to 

become registered as a charity or get 

charity tax concessions has needed to 

To be a charity, an organisation must 

have a charitable purpose and be for 

Charities Act 


and lists 12 charitable purposes which 

ACNC started on 3/12/12 

All new charities must apply to the ACNC to become registered if they want 

Commonwealth tax concessions. Apply online

ACNC currently has 6 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff, 3 of whom 

answer advice phone calls, so ring 132262

Charities Act 2013

charitable purposes

ACNC  Commissioner’s Interpretation Statement on Indigenous Charities

easier for Indigenous charities to be registered.

are relevant for all Commonwealth 


answer your phone calls and help with 

your questions. 

Previously some Indigenous charities had 

were related to each other or were 

descendants of apical ancestors. This 

groups and traditional owner groups. 

cultural information from them, but we 

need respite, they need somewhere to 

journey now. 

our customs and traditions, so that we can 

dependency, if we do it right, if we do 

on, do it on the land. At the same time, 

that same land, somehow it has either 

what we have to do. I never thought it 

been going a long while. To me we may 

native title to our property or country or 

of disconnected for lots of years, and 

before we can go forward, and that 

sometimes frustrates a lot of people. But 

Hosting the National Native 

greatest thing for us. Sometimes it might 

be thought that Aboriginal people living 

right. And by holding the conference on 

our land here, in the Gumbaynggirr land, 

it gives recognition all over this country, 

and even to government, that we still 

their language and retain their tradition 

and culture living on the coast in amongst 

of what we want. But unless we attend 

these types of conferences, and we hear, 

could be the solicitors, they could be all 

sorts of people, on what you really have 

to have together to go anywhere in what 

here. And there is a lot of information 

that came from this conference that we 

a lot of the time we have to read the 

changes in the newspaper or wherever it 

is. By presenting those changes and how 

things are done, and going to be done, 

of these conferences, is face to face 

great for some things, but when we go 

into important, very important things to 

about return of land, we need to get it 

spot on. And these are the conferences 

that we need to bring us up to date, 

questions, so we are very clear on what 

we have to do, and I appreciate these 

types of conferences being held to give 

us that information.

Singing the Coast 

is available through Aboriginal 

Studies Press 


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