Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

New gym for Fregon’s kids

Young people in Fregon in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands will have a new gym in which to play sport and socialise, with the Australian Government contributing $35,000 towards the construction of the facility.

The Fregon Community Council has provided a further $21,000 towards the construction of the gymnasium.

During a visit to Fregon today, the Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, said the new facility would include a free space weights room to enable Fregon’s young people to improve their physical health.

“Among the users of the new facility will be members of the Fregon Football and Softball teams who will use the gymnasium as a dedicated space to undertake weights training to keep themselves in peak condition for the season,” Ms Macklin said.

“It will also provide a central meeting place for Fregon’s youth, as part of the Government’s commitment to continue to work with Indigenous communities to tackle petrol sniffing and other substance misuse.

“Substance misuse has a devastating impact on the health and wellbeing of young Aboriginal kids, and often their families and communities.

“Driven by young people in Fregon, this project will ensure kids are participating in positive activities, including weights training to improve their self-esteem and their fitness, and will help them stay engaged in the community.

“This project is also providing valuable Indigenous job opportunities, with local community members being trained and employed to help build the gymnasium.”

This funding is part of the Government’s $86.3 million Petrol Sniffing Strategy, which aims to reduce the incidence and impact of petrol sniffing and drug and alcohol misuse among young Indigenous people in remote communities.

This project will help build a stronger and safer Fregon and is part of the government’s efforts to close the gap in Indigenous disadvantage.