Orbiting Between Two Worlds
The Necessity of Mobility
From the beginning, Cape York Partnerships led reform thinking around the role played by mobility in the future of Cape York communities.
The necessity of mobility for the purposes of education, employment and the pursuit of careers — and the high degree of trepidation within remote Indigenous communities about their family members leaving home — was the subject of fundamental reform thinking.
The Reform Concepts
Cape York Partnerships developed two reform concepts:
- The concept of "orbits" was developed as a way of explaining that individuals (and their immediate families) can engage in mobility outside of the region, and still retain their connections to their cultural homes and identities
- It became clear that development efforts must be directed at the people of Cape York and not just the place
Cape York people may be, at any one time, engaged in orbits outside of the region but they remain culturally and historically connected to their families, clans and communities.
Understanding communities and people in this way, allows us to see how viability can indeed be achieved. Economic and social viability requires a large measure of mobility for remote communities.
Central to Cape York Partnerships' practical reforms is the need to assist individuals and families to develop the capabilities to undertake orbits of their own choosing.