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Timber Creek company providing real jobs

Posted: Thu, August 26, 2010

Timber Creek Construction and Resources’ Roy Hector, Daniel Jones, Steve Jones.

A Timber Creek company is providing a model for successful businesses in Aboriginal communities and proving hard work pays off.

Tired of working on CDEP projects, Daniel Jones founded Bradshaw and Timber Creek Construction and Resources with the support of the Northern Land Council in 2008.  With the Australian Defence Forces conducting regular training exercises at nearby Bradshaw Station an opportunity existed for a local contractor to provide services under the negotiated Indigenous Land Use Agreement.

The company’s first contract required the opening of a previously unpassable 100 kilometre road within the station.  Since then Daniel and his colleagues have expanded their operation to include verge slashing, erosion works, landscaping, and road and fence maintenance.

The company, with a turnover to date of $1 million, now boasts 10 fulltime employees, and $200,000 in assets including trucks, tractors, pumps and quad bikes.

Daniel is proud to provide a positive example to young people in his community.

“Other young fellas look at you and say ‘I want to be like him, do what he’s doing’,” he said.  “This is great.  We want to help young people and have four aged between 18 and 22 working for us already.”

These young workers will have an opportunity to learn about traditional culture as the company has been contracted to fence and signpost sacred sites within Bradshaw.

The ADF’s operations at Bradshaw include aerial bombing and live fire exercises.  Jones said there are some jobs he and the workers cannot do.

“They wanted us to go out and pick up some dummy bombs but we were too nervous they’d be real ones,” he laughed.

Daniel said the work provided an excellent opportunity to earn a living and remain living within his community.  Camps can be as long as 11 days and a full time cook is employed.

“I love it,” he said.  “We get to go out bush, spend a lot of time on country and make money.  I want to stay in this job forever.”

In July, Daniel’s hard work received acknowledgement when he was awarded a NAIDOC special recognition award in Darwin.

Story and picture: Nigel O'Connor