A local business’ funding for programs to help both indigenous and non-indigenous Hunter Valley young people local was celebrated at a NAIDOC Week (July 6-13) morning tea held last week in Cessnock.
Youth Off The Streets CEO and Founder, Father Chris Riley was special guest at the function. During the morning there were workshops focussed on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history and culture. Father Riley took the opportunity to publicly thank the Greater Building Society’s Greater Charitable Foundation for its generous new funding and support of its Hunter Valley Futures program.
The Greater Charitable Foundation is providing $280,000 and staff volunteers to support tailored early-intervention and education programs for disadvantaged children in 12 communities within the Cessnock, Kurri Kurri and Maitland for two years (2014 and 2015).
Father Riley said he was looking forward to being able to continue to work with the Hunter region young people. He reiterated his commitment made during National Reconciliation Week to employ four Aboriginal people as trainee workers at Youth Off The Streets.
“I call for the Hunter Valley community to join us on delivering results for the Aboriginal community,” Father Riley said.
The Greater Charitable Foundation’s newly appointed Chairman Ian Nelmes and CEO Anne Long were also at the event. Anne said Youth Off The Streets was providing opportunities for young people, particularly Aboriginal people, to improve their lives by overcoming the challenges and barriers they face. She urged other businesses to support programs for local indigenous people.
NAIDOC Week celebrations are held around the country each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.