Yawuru Profiles

 Gerrard Ainsey 

Jerry 7

Gerrard Ainsey who is 13 years old and 6 foot tall, has been attending Christ Church Grammar School in Perth since 2011. He received a 6 year scholarship enabling him to attend the school to develop his education and excellent basketball skills. His basketball achievements to date have made it easy for state selectors to have Gerrard on the 2013 Under 15 Metro Men’s Basketball Team which competed in the Southern Cross Challenge tournament held in Ballarat, NSW in January. This trip was also made possible for Gerrard with the support from NBY. He is great role model for other Yawuru Youth and we wish him the best of luck in his schooling and sporting goals.

Ann-Janette Phillips

Ann-Janette (Anjo) Phillips is a 23yr old Yawuru woman. She is an Artist-Dance Teacher who was selected by Ochre Contemporary Dance Company to perform a production called DIAPHANOUS. Anjo has been involved in a three month process to perform and help put together choreographies. NBY was pleased to provide support to Anjo to enable her to travel to Perth to commence her contract with Ochre. Anjo has a real passion for dance and loves that indigenous and non-indigenous people can come together to share stories in the art form of contemporary dance. Anjo graduated from NAISDA Dance College in 2011 and currently aims to continue to strengthen her dance career.

Ann Janette Phillips explains how she felt towards her experience at Ochre Contemporary Dance Company: “It was the best feeling ever to be a part of a group again and being in a different place all together. I was the happiest I’ve been in my life, the people in the company is what made me want to strive further in my career, it gave me a vision, a dream and remain my passion for dance”.

Ann-Jannette Phillips

Jimmy Edgar – 2013 National NAIDOC Caring for Country Award Winner

Jimmy Edgar with his National NAIDOC award - Caring for Country

Jimmy Edgar with his National NAIDOC award – Caring for Country

Jimmy Edgar is a Yawuru and Karajarri man who has demonstrated his passion for country and culture over many years.

He has played an integral part in developing the Yawuru Cultural Management Plan which received awards such as the WA Medal for Landscape Architecture – Interpretation Australia Judges Recognition Award; National Awards for Excellence 2012.

Jimmy has always contributed and provided extensive cultural knowledge to schools, community organisations and government bodies that are interested in connecting to country and establishing the respect for country that our people have had since bugarrigarra (dreamtime).

On a daily basis he is engaged with the Yawuru Rangers in partnership with the Department of Parks and Wildlife by using his wealth of knowledge for all aspects of keeping country alive and fruitful for our future generations. He also will be the leading cultural advisor for the Yawuru Youth Development Project- ‘On Country’ Cultural Learning Project which aims to enhance the cultural understanding and respect for country from youth in the surrounding Broome area. The project will be delivered within all 6 traditional Yawuru seasons and will detail all significant bush flaura and fauna of identified locations and how to care for country as the country cares for them in return.

He also leads a group of men contracted by Nyamba Buru Yawuru Ltd as Cultural Monitors that are engaged by highly invested companies that wish to develop on Yawuru land. Part of this monitoring is to ensure cultural protocols are adhered to and that any significant landmarks or sacred ground is not impacted or destroyed.

Jimmy is also the most recognised Cultural Consultant of Yawuru who deliver’s Welcome To Country presentations to a long list of visitors and stakeholders within Broome. From supermodel photoshoots to politician visits, Jimmy has become the face of Yawuru Buru (Yawuru country).

Jimmy continues to devote his time to maintaining a healthy country and a strong culture which is handed down to generations of now and the future.

Click here to read more about the NAIDOC awards

Jason Fong and Curtis Robinson (Yawuru rangers)


Two Yawuru joint management trainee rangers have been awarded their Certificate II in Conservation and Land Management by Environment Minister Bill Marmion at the Department of Environment and Conservation’s (DEC) graduation ceremony in Perth.

Jason Fong and Curtis Robinson have been employed by DEC’s West Kimberley District since late 2010 as part of the Yawuru joint management team working on new Yawuru conservation estate in and around Broome.

Jason and Curtis are two of four trainee rangers who are part of the DEC Mentored Aboriginal Training and Employment Scheme (MATES), which assists full time employed trainees to achieve their Certificates II, III and IV in Conservation and Land Management through on ground works, short courses, structured workbooks and mentoring by other staff.

Domanic Matsumoto and Preston Manado are also in the program and are successfully progressing through their work and studies.

As well as receiving his Certificate II, Jason Fong received the top honour in DEC when he was awarded the MATES trainee of the year. This award recognises the trainee who has demonstrated a high level of achievement through their traineeship in practical and theoretical tasks.

“As a ranger the best thing about the job is working on country for country,” Jason said.

“The workplace and training at DEC have been great and I have been given a lot of opportunity to take part in different fields of work.”

Chair of the Yawuru Prescribed Body Corporate and Yawuru Park Council, Patrick Dodson, welcomed the news.

“Gala mabu yangarrjin – we’re all feeling good about this,” Mr Dodson said.

“It’s a big achievement for Jason receiving the top honour, but we’re proud of all the rangers, who have demonstrated that they can achieve their aspirations in the process of building us a strong future.

“It’s only a couple of years since the program started so this is really promising and I would encourage all our young people – not only the rangers – but people at high school and university to take the opportunity to work closely with us in the future.”

The Yawuru joint management program is supported by the State Government’s $63 million Kimberley Science and Conservation Strategy, which is being implemented to protect the region’s natural and cultural values.