Aboriginal Fishing Trust Fund

Trust Overview

The Aboriginal Fishing Trust Fund (AFTF) provides grants and loans for the enhancement, maintenance and protection of Aboriginal cultural fishing as well as for Aboriginal communities to develop businesses associated with fisheries resources throughout NSW.

The Trust is established under the Fisheries Management Act 1994 which directs expenditure and establishes other key operational rules including the involvement of the Aboriginal Fishing Advisory Council (AFAC) in advising on expenditure. Applications for funds are assessed on their merits against set criteria.

Projects funded by the Trust

The AFTF looks to fund a wide range of projects across both coastal and inland regions in NSW, which promote Aboriginal cultural fishing or provide fishing related economic opportunities for Aboriginal people.

Who can apply?

To be eligible applicants must be:

  1. An Aboriginal person, or
  2. An Aboriginal entity, which includes a family/clan or community organisation, or an Aboriginal owned and run business, or
  3. Someone acting on behalf of an Aboriginal entity.

Note: please refer to the 'Guidelines for Applicants' for the definition of these for the purposes of this program.

Apply for funds

Find out how you can apply for funds.

How are funding decisions made?

Applications for funding will be first assessed by the Aboriginal Fishing Trust Expenditure Committee (AFTEC). The AFTEC assesses and ranks applications against set criteria and provides its views to the AFAC. After considering applications and the advice of AFTEC, the AFAC then provide its view to the Minister for Agriculture and Western NSW over expenditure from the Trust. The income and expenditure from the AFTF is subject to an annual audit by the NSW Auditor-General and regular announcements are made about expenditure from the Trust.

Contact the Committee

Executive Officer, AFTEC
c/- NSW Department of Primary Industries
LMB 3020
Nowra NSW 2541
Email: aboriginal.fishingtrust@dpi.nsw.gov.au

Frequently asked questions

What has been funded in the past?

Note – this list includes active and completed projects from each funding round to date.

Year

Project

Amount

2019/20

Cultural fishing project

Supporting local Aboriginal elders and community with regular supplies of fresh fish and teach cultural fishing techniques to Aboriginal young people.

$10,956

2019/20

Cultural fishing project

Supporting cultural workshops for community members to connect to culture and country and learn to make traditional fishing spears and other fishing equipment.

$5000

2019/20

Cultural fishing project

Supporting a series of cultural camps for Aboriginal young people On Country to maintain and protect Aboriginal cultural fishing.

$13,735

2019/20

Cultural net and boat making project

Supporting community to make traditional fish nets and a small boat to help improve health and exchange cultural skills.

$19,357

2019/20

Cultural fishing and education project

Supporting Aboriginal cultural camps to educate the community about sustainable take of marine resources.

$8000

2019/20

Aboriginal cultural fishing program

Supporting Elders and community members to share cultural fishing, river and land management knowledge with Aboriginal youth.

$22,800

2018/19

Research project – Plebidonax deltoides (Pipis)

An investigation of garlaany (pipi) population structure, abundance and distribution including a reseeding trial which will include Aboriginal community engagement and involvement

$70,244

2018/19

Commercial fishing business

Supporting an existing commercial fishing business reform its fishing operations to remain engaged in the commercial fishing industry..

$100,000

2018/19

Cultural fishing project

Supporting local Aboriginal elders and community to access cultural fishing sites and practice cultural fishing whilst sharing this knowledge with broader community members.

$8,330

2018/19

Cultural fishing project

Supporting and maintaining community gatherings around fishing for the mullet during their annual migration.

$5,000

2018/19

Cultural fishing project

This project aims to educate Yuin youth and men in Yuin ways of all cultural fishing aspects.

$8,000

2018/19

Cultural fishing project

Supporting cultural workshops for community members (one in Eden and one on the inland) to learn about traditional fishing laws and learn the ancient craft of hand making traditional fishing equipment.

$5,000

2018/19

Cultural fishing project

This project is to provide a camping experience where Elders and community members can share cultural fishing, river and land management knowledge with Aboriginal youth.

$10,530

2018/19

Fishing competition and carp muster

Supporting a carp muster event as part of the Festival of Baiame’s Nghunnu.

$3,500

2017/18

Aquacultures business

This project aims to restore an inherited family oyster aquaculture business in Wonboyn Lake, with focus on long-term operational sustainability, and promoting employment opportunities for the local community.

$117,736

2017/18

Cultural fishing project

Supporting the community to gather around fishing for the mullet run.

$5,000

2017/18

Cultural net making workshop

This project involves running a series of workshops for community members where they will get involved in making fishing equipment for use during cultural gatherings and events.

$3,940

2017/18

Commercial fishing business

Funding will support the development of a business and marketing plan, as well as purchasing of operational equipment needed for business to be viable and support Aboriginal people remaining engaged in the commercial fishing industry.

$55,000

2017/18

Commercial fishing business

Providing support for the purchase of operational equipment with aim to support continued involvement in the commercial fishing industry.

$12,000

2017/18

Revegetation project and cultural workshops

This project links revegetation of specific native plants used as material for weaving, as well as facilitating workshops that promote cultural fishing practices and improve broader community awareness.

$67,585

2017/18

Habitat works and cultural fishing education

This project will educate the community on cultural fishing practices and increase fish habitat at the Bulgandramine Mission site through planting native species and weed reduction.

$5,000

2017/18

Development of a Sea Country Management Plan

The project aims to understand environmental conditions and issues along with community aspirations so as to be able to promote the overarching aim of progressing to a plan that promotes local community involvement in monitoring and enhancing cultural fishing grounds by undertaking innovative targeted habitat restorations, estuary health assessments, education and awareness programs while creating opportunity for the future management of aquatic resources.

$2,350

2017/18

Commercial fishing business

Providing support for the purchase of operational equipment with aim to support continued involvement of this long established Aboriginal business in the commercial fishing industry.

$10,000

2017/18

Development of fishing facilities and education materials

Development of infrastructure and education materials that are culturally appropriate and capture the significance of the environment, fish habitat, wetlands to Aboriginal people of the area and represent their cultural values.

$73,300