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Skilling the future for Roebourne

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On any given day, Warramugardi Yirdiyaburra (WY) Program coordinators Corissa Boddington and Georgia Mills are hard at work in Roebourne, helping Indigenous people from the small Pilbara town find employment.

The dedication and commitment they display in helping people overcome barriers to employment is truly remarkable but, according to them, it is all in a day's work.

The power of the WY Program, which is proudly funded by the Woodside-operated North West Shelf Project, is evident in Corissa's story.

It wasn't that long ago that she was herself a participant in the program.

Corissa had started a mechanical apprenticeship at a workshop in nearby Karratha but hurt her back and had to withdraw. After recovering from her injury and starting work at a frail aged care facility in Roebourne, things were looking up. But again, Corissa hurt her back and at a difficult time for the mother of twin girls, Georgia stepped in to help.

As WY program manager, ​Georgia saw an opportunity to help Corissa back to work, taking her to physio appointments.

It wasn't long before Corissa was mentoring other WY participants and now they are a formidable team.

"We do what we have to do to help people and we're flexible which I think is important," Georgia said.

"I like doing what I do, we like helping people," Corissa explained.

The pair speak proudly of another WY participant in Claudia Mourambine, who participated in training at the Roebourne Café as part of the program.

"When we first met her we didn't think she'd last but she kept coming back and now look at her," Corissa said.

When asked what she had taken from participating in WY and working at the café, Claudia couldn't help but smile, obviously proud of her achievements.

"It's given me so much more confidence and I've had so much training," Claudia said.

Transitioning to full-time work for the first time wasn't necessarily a walk in the park for Claudia but she kept at it and hasn't looked back.

"They (Georgia and Corissa) kept making me come and I got used to it," Claudia said.

Roebourne Café manager Lana Wilson said the transformation she'd seen in Claudia was incredible.

"When she started she was so quiet and kept to herself but she is so different now, she has grown so much," Lana said.

"She has so much confidence and we've just put her on as a senior so she is in charge of the other staff.

"We've had a lot of support from Georgia, she's very much a part of Claudia's success."

The Roebourne Café is owned and operated by the Ngarluma Yindjibarndi Foundation Ltd (NYFL) and the WY Program is run by NYFL with funding from the North West Shelf Project.

Ben Cranston Woodside 0 Replies
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