My name is Nigel Millgate. I am a proud Ngemba Karulkiyalu man (stone people & speakers of Wangaapuwan language) but grew up in the rural community of Dubbo NSW. My family are the traditional owners of our ancestral lands: places like Gundabooka Mountain, Compton Downs, Byrock and we have strong connections to the Brewarrina community.
After working with my brother Matt Simms over the past 4 years on the Central Coast, Matt and his father (uncle sonny) extended an invitation for me to come down and help out with the business, an offer I couldn't refuse. I have a strong relationship with mob on the South Coast, with some family ties and strong friendships from my rugby league career, even winning a few regional Koori Knockouts with the South Coast brothers.
My role here at Djiriba Waagura is to look after the business management and general operations of the business, as well as deliver some cultural content on tours, camps and wellbeing programs under the guidance of traditional owners Matt and Uncle Sonny Simms.
Throughout my career, i have had the privilege to study at Newcastle University and work within Aboriginal communities across Australia for the past 10 years. I've worked in services such as Aboriginal employment, housing and in the last 6 years as Aboriginal Program Coordinator delivering a youth suicide prevention program to young Aboriginal men in schools, juvenile justice centres and the glen rehabilitation centre on the Central Coast, Newcastle and regions across NSW. I have also run my own business as well as being a managing Director at Wakagetti Indigenous Corporation, facilitating cultural experiences such as camps, tours, school and NAIDOC WEEK incursions. My cultural teachings come from my grandfather, uncle Paul Gordon, highly respected Ngemba man and without that old man none of the above would be possible.
I am grateful for the opportunity to move south with my family and build on those strong relationships that I have established down there over the past 10 years. I'm also looking forward to building many more relationships from delivering our experiences within Djiriba Waagura.