The ILC and Bidjara people have celebrated the granting of Mt Tabor Station to the Goorathuntha Traditional Owners Limited (GTOL). (Pictured at the celebrations are William Hill ILC, Sheryl Lawton, Tricia Button ILC, Floyd Robinson, Keelen Mailman, Ray Robinson)
Mt Tabor Station, 700 km west of Brisbane, was bought by the ILC in 1997 for its cultural significance to Bidjara people, with many cultural, burial, rock art and stencilling sites spread across the grazing property.
In recent years the remains of Bidjara traditional owners have been repatriated to the property by the Queensland Museum along with numerous artefacts and stone tools.
Bidjara traditional owner and 2016 Australian and Queensland Mother of the Year Keelan Mailman has been employed by the ILC as caretaker of the 70,000ha property since August 2006.
In 2015, GTOL developed plans for the establishment of a healing centre on Mt Tabor to deliver programs to address social and emotional wellbeing needs of Indigenous people.
GTOL has partnered with Holistic Justice and Community Services Pty Ltd (HJCS) and are developing a proposal to support use the Healing Centre for diversionary and rehabilitation purposes.
ILC Chairman Eddie Fry said the ILC was proud to join with Bidjara people and GTOL in celebrating the granting of the land.
“Mt Tabor Station has great cultural and social significance for Bidjara people and the Indigenous Estate. The ILC congratulates the community leaders on their hard work over many years leading to the successful divestment of the property.
“The grant of the land by the ILC provides a foundation for the next stage of Mt Tabor’s development which GTOL hopes will lead to increased support services for people in the area,” Mr Fry said.
Since 2003, the property has been agisted to a pastoral company, Australian Country Choice Pty Ltd (ACC) under an Agistment Agreement, with Bidjara people using the property for cultural events since 2006. In 2011, the ILC started divestment discussions with Bidjara Traditional Owners Limited (BTOL), and in September 2014, Goorathuntha Traditional Owners Limited (GTOL) was formally established, with the ILC then entering a three lease from January 2015. During the lease period GTOL has demonstrated its capacity to manage the property and deliver Indigenous cultural benefits for which it was acquired. The ILC has also funded the establishment of a property management plan for Mount Tabor and major upgrades to water infrastructure, stockyards, buildings and fencing.
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