Image: Maori in the front row of the Babana Aboriginal organised colored diggers march, held each ANZAC day to acknowledge Indigenous peoples service in the Navy, Army, Airforce and associated forces. Maori have participated in the event since its inception Image: NewsNow EntreHub
The National Maori Authority, Nga Ngaru and one of Australia’s oldest and largest Aboriginal service organisations, Babana Aboriginal, have today embarked on a strategic relationship with the signing of a memorandum of understanding that will lead to a joint venture between Maori and Indigenous and Torres Strait Islanders.
The partnership will be a landmark arrangement that will see both organisations harness the power of indigenous knowledge and intellectual property, enable the cultural and economic connections as well as working with each other to raise the profile of Indigenous urban peoples wherever they may be.
Image: Mere Balzer with the former Governor General of New Zealand being invested into the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Health
“As an organisation we have long recognised that our Maori people aren’t just located around their Iwi or in our domestic urban centres, they are also truly pan tribal and global and with an estimated one in four Maori now living in Australia this represents a real opportunity for us to work with Babana and others to form a bridge between our peoples, other indigenous peoples and Iwi.” Said Mere Balzer, Chair of Nga Ngaru (National Maori Authority).
“This is an exciting opportunity for Babana Aboriginal because we know we have many Maori in our communities as well. Every year on ANZAC day we march with our Maori brothers and sisters in the Coloured Diggers Parade that we organise and we have close ties when it comes to employment, mental health and a range of other social issues. By working with the Nga Ngaru the opportunity to also build partnerships around employment and economic development are exciting.” Said Mark Spinks, Chair of Babana Aboriginal and the Tribal Warrior Association.
The partnership will focus on the following:
Joint sharing of cultural knowledge, information and opportunities
The development of joint projects for Maori in Australia around health and employment alongside our Aboriginal brothers and sisters
Development of economic and business trade relationships that Nga Ngaru can help facilitate between Iwi and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisations and in reverse
Mark Spinks will be a guest speaker at the National Symposium for Maori Economic Development and Entrepreneurship being hosted by Nga Ngaru in March of 2017.
The story of Babana Aboriginal and Mark Spinks, the organisations founder: