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This period has also seen significant innovation

in the way Jawun operates. In 2010, Jawun

began work in Redfern in Sydney—its first urban

location. The differences between urban and

remote locations—including the ‘scattered nature’

of Indigenous people in urban settings and the

general by-products of an urban environment such

as housing shortages and access to alcohol and

drugs—posed their own challenges and required

flexibility in Jawun’s approach.

Karyn Baylis explained the key to the successful

application of the Jawun model in new


As Jawun has expanded, we’ve focused on

keeping that dynamic edge through innovation,

flexibility and adaption. From our experience,

tailoring our approach for each individual

community has been essential

to ensure the

effectiveness and sustainability of the model.

In 2011, Jawun made the strategic decision to

include government as a secondment partner.

This step added another dimension to the Jawun

partnership model. Secondees from public sector

agencies (federal and West Australian from 2011,

New South Wales and South Australian from 2015)

provide valuable insights into the mechanics of

government for Indigenous organisations, which

are critically affected by government priorities,

policies and funding.

On the government side, secondees benefit from

personal development and gain insights into the

realities of Indigenous communities, which in turn

leads to increased understanding of Indigenous

matters in the Australian public sector as a whole.


2012 2014 2015


Jawun hits the 1,000 secondee

mark and expands to the West

Kimberley, WA, the Central

Coast, NSW, and North East

Arnhem Land, NT.


The first employees from the

Australian Public Service take

up secondments in Indigenous




Jawun expands

to NPY Lands,

Central Australia.


Jawun begins work in

its ninth region: Lower River

Murray, Lakes and

Coorong, SA.

Sunset in Cape York.

Photo: Simon Veitch