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Curragh and the community

Curragh and the community – Wesfarmers Curragh is proud of its long association with the Blackwater community. Since its opening in 1983 employees and their families have called Blackwater home and it is through this connection that Curragh has been a great supporter of the Blackwater community for almost 30 years.

Curragh’s community support touches on many facets of the community including support to community organisations, healthcare, education, sport, culture, indigenous communities and tourism with over $420,000 contributed to these organisations in the past 12 months. Curragh is proud to support the development of strong, healthy and vibrant Blackwater community.

Curragh’s Executive General Manager, Rod Bridges, understands the importance of supporting the local community.

“This is where our employees live and work. They bring their families up here and we are committed to making the Blackwater community the best it can possibly be. We are proud of our contributions to the community over many years and I’m pleased to be able to say that many of our employees make a significant contribution to the community in their own right. This is not about ‘sponsoring’ events it’s about Curragh being a responsible member of the local community,” Bridges said.
In recent years Curragh has been a foundation sponsor of The Blackwater International Coal Centre (BICC), which educates the general public about the value of Australia’s coal industry, continues to receive the highest level of both financial and in-kind support reflecting the value of its contribution to community liveability and regional economic diversification.

In 2010/11 more than 20 senior and junior sporting and recreational clubs in the local region shared an investment of over $34,000 while local healthcare services, charitable fundraising and community groups received over $80,000 from Curragh.
Importantly Curragh is a founding and continuing sponsor of the Mines Consortium Agreement with Queensland Health that supports the employment of a second doctor at the Blackwater Hospital.

Curragh is always seeking to develop innovative ways to support education and job creation in the local area. This year the Curragh accommodation team supported the Doorways to Construction (D2C) Structured Workplace Learning Program in partnership with the Blackwater High School, Construction Skills Queensland, TAFE and town maintenance contractors. This program provided practical work placements for nine students under the guidance of qualified tradespersons. The program will conclude in late 2011 with the opportunity for students to demonstrate their skills on a community project.

In partnership with its parent division, Wesfarmers Resources, Curragh has established a partnership with Life Education Australia for the delivery of drug and alcohol education for Blackwater’s primary school children. This program has been expanded to ensure primary school children in Blackwater, Woorabinda and Central Queensland are able to access these excellent drug and health education programs.

Another of these partnership has seen Curragh bring the Queensland Theatre Company to Blackwater for the past three years where acting workshops are provided for high school students and performances of a children’s play is performed at Blackwater’s and Woorabinda’s primary schools.

This year the WorkPac/Curragh Positive Energy Program celebrated major contractual achievements by supporting the local community through two Family Film Weekends in February and March 2011. In 2012 Curragh and WorkPac will expand its support for the local community through the Positive Energy Program with a $25,000 contribution to the Blackwater Ladies Hospital Auxiliary.

Volunteering
Over the past year 30 Curragh employees donated over 320 hours of their time and expertise during working hours to worthwhile community organisations and projects. Our employees provided job search skills to local high schools students; surveying expertise to a local sporting club; manned a display and attended information sessions.

As well as being a major financial sponsor of the AG GROW event in Emerald, Curragh employees volunteered their time to staff a public Career and Information display over the three days.

Indigenous support
Curragh and its major mining contractor Thiess, partnered with the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Industry (Indigenous Employment Initiatives Division) and the Salvation Army Employment Plus to offer 10 local indigenous people the opportunity to work in the mining industry.

A graduation ceremony was held in July to celebrate the successful trainees from Woorabinda and Blackwater who completed an intensive pre-employment, coal industry and simulator training program and a fourweek site orientation before being offered a two-year traineeship.

Housing
Since it commenced in 1983 Curragh has always been synonymous with quality housing for its employees. Right from the start Curragh set a new benchmark in the provision of housing which was purpose built for the mining industry. That tradition has continued when this year Curragh took the decision to invest even further in the Blackwater housing market with the construction of 19 two-storey houses and 14 apartments for employees and their families. In a further commitment to providing quality accommodation Curragh partnered with ESS and Qantac to provide single villagestyle accommodation for its employees and contractors in the Rangeview and Banksia Villages. With quality family and single accommodation in scarce supply these housing projects are a very welcome addition to the Blackwater community.

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