King’s approval: Tribal monarch acknowledges SurePact

SurePact is passionate about supporting Indigenous Councils to improve business efficiencies and grow the skills of their teams.

A number of Indigenous Councils utilise SurePact to obtain better outcomes. One such Council is Yarrabah Aboriginal Shire Council (YASC), located in Far North Queensland. 

King Vincent Jabaan Shreiber of the Gunggandj tribe

Fifth generation King Vincent Jabaan Shreiber of the Gunggandj tribe of the Guru-Gulu clan, Australia’s only traditionally recognised Indigenous monarch, says Yarrabah ASC works side by side with the traditional owners of the land to ensure that projects delivered benefit the Indigenous community and only move forward with their blessing.

“The Council has been very supportive of projects that benefit the Indigenous community, and with the blessing of the traditional owners, it is a good venture to be involved in,” he says.

“There is no win-win or lose-lose scenario, it is a negotiation to bring everyone together on the same page. Before any major infrastructure occurs, the Council and the traditional owners sit together to come to an agreement that benefits us all. 

“We are shown the plans, told of what the developments are all about, and who is going to gain advantages from the project going ahead. This process works really smoothly.”

Vincent says SurePact has become an integral part of the community’s operations.

“I look after the water and waste in our community,” he says, “and before SurePact came on board we were finding ourselves getting into the red. We were overspending, and this was picked up on by our auditors. We found ourselves in a position where there wasn’t money left in our budget to pay for things such as labour.

“The SurePact platform has helped us to identify where we were overspending and why we were overspending. It’s been an eye opener for me. It has given us an insight into how we can produce better outcomes with our budget in the future, which has really opened up a doorway for all of our organisation to look at SurePact and see how it can be utilised in their work.” 

Yarrabah ASC Works and Infrastructure Project Manager Jason Smith has a historical connection to Yarrabah. His grandparents were part of the Stolen Generation and brought to Yarrabah. Jason himself was born in Babinda on his mother’s country, Lower Coastal Yidinyji Nation, part of the Wanyurr Majay Language Group.

For Jason, SurePact plays a major role in assisting Yarrabah to project manage the delivery of new construction and infrastructure within the community.

“Yarrabah is arguably one of the largest Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Australia and suffers with overcrowding issues,” he says. “Council understands it has to look to improve these issues by building new homes for our families.

“Inside the SurePact platform, there are tools which assist me in the process and completion of building projects for the Council and community. It provides a platform to manage and control each project.

“SurePact’s systems and processes allow me, as the Project Manager, to save time on projects and ensure they run smoother. In turn, this means shorter delays and faster completions, benefiting the community as a whole.

“SurePact also helps to educate people in the community about how to use the platform, which in turn gives us confidence to complete work using SurePact’s tool. SurePact is truly assisting the Council to improve the lives of its people.”

For Vincent, the transparency and visibility that SurePact provides helps to link modern infrastructure projects to his community’s collaborative culture. 

“In our culture we like to share,” he says. “We share knowledge, we share dances, we share culture and we share who we are. Yarrabah is leading the way with SurePact, and we want to share this with other communities so they can follow suit. We can lead from the front, and other communities will follow to create widespread enhancements for Indigenous people.”