APN CEO Visits Kalumburu Community Ahead of RCP Grant Project
APN CEO Visits Kalumburu Ahead of Regional Connectivity Program Implementation
Community WiFi Solution to Connect Entire Town
Australian Private Networks' CEO Martin Camilleri recently travelled to the remote Northern WA community of Kalumburu to meet with Community Members and Leaders to discuss the upcoming installation of Community WiFi and Phone services by APN.
Martin Camilleri travelled to Kalumburu Community alongside Penny Griffin from the Western Australian State Government's Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.
APN will soon be installing internet and phone services for the Community's population of roughly 500 people, running through APN's satellite internet services.
The Community WiFi and phone service will include the installation of a WiFi mesh network offering whole-of-community coverage.
Indoor WiFi receivers will be installed in over 150 homes and community buildings and external WiFi mesh repeaters in specially chosen locations to ensure ubiquitous WiFi coverage anywhere outdoors across the Community.
Each indoor WiFi receiver includes a telephone that allows for free extension-to-extension calls within the Community and the ability to make calls to national landlines and mobile phones free of charge.
"Ultimately, the technology is the easy part of projects like this," said Martin Camilleri,
"Technology is the by-product of all the hard work we do as an organisation investigating and understanding the needs of specific indigenous communities, developing a solution that meets those needs but also engages the community and empowers those living in the community."
Travelling from Melbourne to remote WA is not easy in normal circumstances, but with COVID-19 lockdowns engulfing the Eastern states in mid-2021, the trip was even more difficult.
With growing Victorian case numbers in July, Martin travelled to the Northern Territory ahead of Victorian border closures to ensure he would be allowed to enter WA.
In Darwin, he spent two weeks in quarantine before travelling to Western Australia, and was fortunate to be on the last plane bound for Perth before the WA/NT border was also closed due to a snap lockdown in NT.
"We value the level of trust we have with these Communities and meeting them face-to-face, showing you care to hear their concerns and needs in person, is an important part of building the relationship between us and the communities we service."
"The hard work is identifying – then developing and implementing – functionality that meets the unique community requirements of indigenous communities."
APN's solutions include specific features for indigenous communities, including the ability to access government websites without needing to purchase data and providing free access to local content servers, so indigenous Communities can digitise their photos and stories, to preserve and pass on their history to future generations.
During his week-long trip to Kalumburu, Martin enjoyed a 'Breakfast BBQ' with Community Members, where he fielded questions from Community Members about the upcoming installation.
He later met with Community Leaders to discuss logistics and final arrangements for the project.
APN Field teams will spend over five weeks living and working in Kalumburu Community to complete the installations, commencing in early October.
"We take the time to talk to people on-the-ground and gain a proper understanding of each Community's needs before commencing on a project like this, and that doesn't end once the Project Build starts."
APN will provide ongoing training in digital literacy and service support to Community Members and maintenance and servicing of hardware to ensure the Community can take full advantage of the solution into the future.
The Kalumburu Community WiFi Project will be installed and maintained by APN under funding jointly serviced through the Australian Government's Regional Connectivity Program (RCP Program) and the Western Australian State Government's Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.
You can learn more about APN's indigenous community projects and remote communications solutions on our website, or by contacting our Corporate Solutions team on (03) 8566 8312 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.