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Renewable energy sources; Aboriginal Australians -- Services for; Community development; Appropriate technology; Periodicals

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Centre for Appropriate Technology

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Alice Springs


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Newsletter, no. 29



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Centre for Appropriate Technology



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ADRIAN Our Indigenous health centres around the country, there on the forefront of our peoples health, what would you like to say to those people working in Indigenous health centres? SALLY Continue to do the good job, that youre doing cause you are doing a great job, for our people, and we need more funding in those areas. I would say thankyou, youre doing a great job. ADRIAN Nearly ten years ago, you helped establish CATSIN, the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses. How did CATSIN begin and why did you set it up? SALLY As I said, I was the first Aboriginal student nurse at the Royal Prince Alfred hospital and supposedly the first Aboriginal registered nurse in NSW. I didnt see any other Aboriginal people when I was working in the clinical areas, so when I did my masters degree, I looked at why theres so few Aboriginal registered nurses. The reasons behind that are fairly obvious, racism and discrimination and the lack of support within the tertiary sector, and also in the health care system. So I thought then, well theres no good writing about it and talking about it, we have to do something about this. So with the help of the Australian Nursing Federation, a forum was held in Sydney in 1997, and from that forum CATSIN was born. There were 32 Indigenous registered nurses who attended that forum, which was very good, and for people to know, that there are more of us out there, than we realised. The main objective of CATSIN is to increase the recruitment and retention of Aboriginal and Torres Strait people into nursing, the flow on from that are to have curriculum changed in schools of nursing, so all student nurses will learn about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history and culture, to have a better understanding, because if you consider, most student nurses come from white middle class backgrounds, and the only information that they get about Indigenous people, is from the media, and most of that as we know, portrays a negative stereotype. ADRIAN Would you like to make a final comment Sally? SALLY Only what I said earlier Adrian. People should hang onto their dream and keep your eye on the prize, and dont let anyone, anyone, deter you from that. Adrian Shaw Centre for Appropriate Technology Alice Springs demonstration of use of the stove. Initial impressions of the stove from the community included: It is a good way of using old flour drums. It would be easy to make the bucket stove here at the community, as we have the tools. It is very fuel efficient. The wok is a good option for cooking a meal to feed between ten to twelve people. The food in the wok needs constant stirring because the bottom of the wok heats up more than the sides. It would be useful for the store to sell woks. The bucket stove might provide another option for cooking food at your community. These questions may help you to decide whether it is an option for you. Can you buy flour in flour drums at the store? Is there an angle grinder in the community? Does some-one feel confident in using the angle grinder? Can you purchase a wok? Many thanks to Roy Price for sharing his bucket stove concept with the staff from CAT. Indoor conventional stoves are often notthe most appropriate cooking facility for many remote communities. Conventional stoves often have an average life of 12-18 months in many places the element can burn-out, the electrical wire can fail, cook tops can be damaged, gas burners can clog up, doors can be broken off and knobs can get lost. Moreover, people enjoy cooking outside on fire. There are a range of products for outdoor cooking. In this short article we highlight one designed by Roy Price from the Northern Territory Department of Health and Community Services. The bucket stove is made by placing a wok on a flour drum, but there are a couple of steps to preparing these items for use in cooking. The flour drum needs to be cut with an angle grinder, for air vents and a window to place fire wood (see diagram). A new wok has engine oil on it to stop it from rusting. The engine oil must be burnt off before use for cooking on a fire. To burn off the engine oil: 1.Make a fire and put the wok in the fire and burn the engine oil off. 2.Clean the wok with a pot scrubber and detergent. Rinse with water. 3.Pour cooking oil over the inside of the wok and place on the fire again. The cooking oil blackens in the wok. 4.Clean the work with paper and water. The bucket stove is now ready for cook ing. You place the fire inside the window in the bucket drum and the wok on top. At Engawala community, the most popular option for cooking is on the fire and many households do not have operational stoves. Last August, we undertook a test run of the bucket stove, as another option for cooking food on. Some members of the community helped to cook up a lamb and vegetable curry, as a 4 5 Bushlight has been honoured with one of the engineeringprofessions highest accolades an Engineers Australia National Engineering Excellence Award. Forty-one engineering projects from around Australia were short-listed for the annual awards which recognise best practice in Australian engineering, contribution to the national economy, and impact on quality of life of relevant communities. Bushlight is managed by the Centre for Appropriate Technology in Alice Springs. Jim Bray, Chair of the Centre for Appropriate Technology Board said, This award is a valued recognition of the efforts of the Centre for Appropriate Technology an Indigenous organisation which for over twenty years has supported Indigenous people with knowledge and access to science and technology. It is a recognition by mainstream engineering industry practitioners that cutting edge innovation can emerge from people-centred approaches. Mr Bray thanked the Australian Government which has supported Bushlight over the last four years in working with more than 80 of Australia's remote Indigenous communities to implement sustainable renewable energy services. Typically, remote communities rely on diesel or petrol generators to supply electricity for refrigeration, lighting, fans and other electrical appliances. Generators have proved to be increasingly expensive to operate and unreliable, making electricity supply in these communities intermittent and of poor quality. This reduces the life of appliances and makes the safe storage and refrigeration of food and medicines very difficult. The absence of reliable and affordable energy within a community also limits the educational, communications and livelihood opportunities of community members. NEWSNEWS Grant Behrendorff, Bushlight with Jenny Kroker, Noel Hayes CAT Board Members, receiving the National Engineering Excellence award from Peter Cockbain, Engineers Australia (far left) A significant feature of the Bushlight program is its focus on working with communities to develop Community Energy Plans which document community choices and decisions on how they use energy now and into the future. Bushlight designs, specifies and manages the manufacture and installation of robust renewable energy systems to meet identified community needs and ensures appropriate maintenance and support arrangements are in place. Bushlight has managed the installation of more than 90 renewable energy system installations in remote communities spread across northern and central Australia. In doing so, Bushlight has set new national and international benchmarks for the cost effective, equitable and sustainable provision of energy services to remote communities. The Australian Government through the Renewable Remote Power Generation Programme, within the Department of the Environment and Heritage, and the Department of Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs has committed to providing $16m to fund the Bushlight project from July 2006 to June 2008. Bushlight wins national engineering excellence award Engawala community trials bucket stove Imparja Cup 2007 Mens Division 2 win to CAT Tigers In a thrilling game the CAT Tigers won the Mens Division 2final in the Imparja Cup 2007. Lachlan Thompson held his nerve as the last batsman for the CAT team and steered the team to victory against a valiant Central Land Council team. The Division 2 win came despite the CAT men going down to the Central Land Council team in the opening game. CATs all-rounder, Ronald Dodd, was named player of the series (Division 2) averaging three wickets per match with the ball and posting an average of thirty-eight runs with the bat. CATs Luke Buzzacott scored the highest individual score of 78 runs. He kept his best till last as he scored his 78 runs in the grand final. In other cricket action during the Imparja Cup 2007 the CAT Womens team, the Feral Katz, came third in the Womens Division. CAT Tigers Mens Division 2 Back row, (left to right): Ronald Dodd, Luke Buzzacott, Peter Liddle, Gavin Clarke, Hayden Stuart. Front row, (left to right): Lachlan Thompson, Steve Bailey, Kevin Ronberg. Absent: Jamies Newman, Peter Watson, Reg Smith (Junior).

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