The Strategic Review of Indigenous Expenditure revealed that $3.5-billion a year has been wasted on ineffective programs by successive governments. Sadly these wasted billions have left the most successful literacy program for Indigenous youth in the Northern Territory within weeks of closure.
Rev. Bill Crews’ Exodus Foundation operates its literacy program in four locations in the Northern Territory. Developed in conjunction with Macquarie University, it is a circuit breaker on poverty; teaching literacy to those indigenous children who have fallen through the cracks in the mainstream system. The program routinely lifts kids from the lowest NAPLAN band to above the national average. However, governments have not agreed to commit to funding it.
“The Strategic Review calls on government to ‘embrace evidence based programs to address Indigenous literacy’”, said Rev. Crews. “So I call on government to urgently intervene and embrace and expand our proven program.”
“Just 0.01% of the $3.5-billion wasted could guarantee the future of our literacy program in the Territory, and thereby guarantee a future for many hundreds of Indigenous children”, said Rev. Crews.
Rev. Crews’ Exodus Foundation is closing the gap with its literacy program. Government must embrace the recommendations of the Strategic Review and fund this proven, evidence-based program.