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Tuesday, 16 October 1984
Page: 1735

Senator ELSTOB —Is the Minister representing the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs aware of the highly successful and popular horticultural education and training project for Aboriginals being run at Poverty Flat near Ceduna in South Australia ? Is the Minister aware that this project has positively improved employment and living skills of all participants and has proved extremely versatile by producing fruit, vegetables and flowers from an infertile scrub environment? Will the Minister consider the possibility of using the Poverty Flat project as a model for other Aboriginal communities? Will the Minister also consider the viability of similar projects being set up as business and management training ventures, particularly for Aboriginals in remote areas where unemployment is very high and community demand for fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers is guaranteed?

Senator RYAN —The Minister for Aboriginal Affairs has advised me of the project to which Senator Elstob's question referred. The project at Poverty Flat, which is a project for the growing of vegetables and flowers in an infertile environment, has been extremely successful. The Minister advises that the project is being funded by the Department of Employment and Industrial Relations and the Department of Aboriginal Affairs-and also with some technical and further education funding, I am pleased to say, in relation to my own portfolio. The Minister will consider the possibility of using the Poverty Flat project as a model for other Aboriginal communities. However, it is up to each Aboriginal community to establish its priorities in relation to projects it wishes to undertake. In respect of the training of Aboriginals in business and management skills, the Poverty Flat project will be able to be used as a successful model on which other business and management ventures can be based.