Jordin Payne is our Senior Advisor of Aboriginal Engagement and proud Nimanburr Djugun Yawuru person working in the North West Region. We've asked her to take us through her role and what it involves.

"My role is all about building relationships based on trust and respect, something I love doing and have a genuine passion for. This is necessary to facilitate effective and authentic communication between our North West regional project teams and our internal and external stakeholders.

This level of engagement is critical to the success of the work we do for the ongoing provision of water services in our communities. I spend a lot of my day having conversations and sharing information to ensure the people who have an interest in, or are directly impacted by the work we do, are kept informed. This shows respect, minimises disruption and ensures peoples’ safety – both occupational and cultural".

Working with Aboriginal communities

"The unique aspect of my work is the focus on connecting our teams with Aboriginal communities and families. We have a troubling past with our Aboriginal communities that has perpetuated into the experiences felt by many families today. My role is all about finding a way to rebuild the trust that has been lost which isn’t possible without truth-telling.

I am currently providing support to the Aboriginal Community Services team and the North West region. Their essential and municipal upgrades program, works heavily with Department of Communities to improve water services for several Aboriginal communities across the state. The program will result in bringing the quality of drinking water and community wastewater services up to standard".

Giving back

"By far, the most rewarding part of my job is being able to give back and have an impact in my community and for my people. To be able to do my work while back on Country has been incredibly rewarding, and I look forward to many years of contributing wherever I can.

I feel immense pride working in the water sector. Water is such a vital part of my wellbeing and health, so to be able to work for project teams and for an essential service that ensures the health and wellbeing of so many others, really gives me mabu liyan (good spirit).

My work takes me back onto lands where my ancestors walked, lived and worked for thousands of years. I’m living my dream to be back on Country to work for, and with my community and to be contributing to such a vital human right such as water for my People.

Assisting my Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal co-workers on their cultural learning journey has also been very fulfilling. This has allowed me to showcase the incredible value Aboriginal perspective and knowledge bring to the table".