“Bularri Muurlay Nyanggan” translates to “Two Path Strong” in the Gumbaynggirr language and thereby sets the goal of our corporation, which is to ensure that our Aboriginal community, and in particular our youth are “two path strong” – strong in culture and strong in education. BMNAC is a not-for-profit Charity with Public Benelevont Institution (PBI) and Deductible Gift Recipiency (DGR) status.
BMNAC was established in 2010 by our Executive Officer Clark Webb, when two after-school Goori Learning Centres (GLC’s) were set up at Wongala Estate Aboriginal Reserve (Coffs Harbour) and Woolgoolga High School. The third learning centre was established in 2012 at William Bayldon Primary School in Sawtell. Initially, all three GLC’s were co-ordinated and attended in a voluntary capacity until late 2013 when funding was received from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet’s PaCE initiative to run programs that encourage parents to engage with and participate in the education of their children. The programs that we deliver are designed to ensure that Aboriginal youth are strong in terms of both cultural identity and educational success. It is our goal that our children complete and achieve at school at the same rate as all Australian children in order to compete for real jobs whilst also being knowledgeable and proud of whom they are as Aboriginal people.
Since our beginning, we have continually expanded the scope of our programs in order to meet the aspirations of our community and now deliver:
- Goori Learning Centres (Offering tutoring, homework support, Gumbaynggirr language lessons, and other varying activities to keep the students engaged and continue attendance).
- Gumbaynggirr Language Revitalisation Programs (Including weekly community classes, school packages, recording speakers- in particular our last surviving first language speaker Uncle Cecil “Bing” Laurie, and teacher training.
- Cultural Camps (Once per year, giving GLC students and their families an opportunity to come together and engage in our program and culture by attending cultural tours, participating in cultural activities and interacting with our Elders.
- Cultural Engagement Training (For schools and organisations)
And lastly, to help us share our culture, offer job opportunities and pursue our goal of become a fully self-sustainable organisation we have developed our Cultural Tourism Experiences in partnership with Forestry Corporation NSW. The “Giingan Gumbaynggirr Cultural Experience” was set up to create a long-term sustainable financial income stream for the BMNAC programs. All profits from the Giingan Experience are directly reinvested into our programs.