IRCA is the peak body that represents and advocates for the media and communications interests of remote and very remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Australia. IRCA promotes the important role played by remote Indigenous media in maintaining language and culture and providing tools for self-representation and community development. IRCA supports remote Indigenous media organisations (RIMOs) that have played a key role in the development of the remote media and communications industry in Australia.
Development of a National Strategy to preserve nationally significant remote Indigenous audiovisual collections
Representatives from Indigenous remote media organisations are taking steps to deal with the urgent challenge of protecting thousands of culturally significant audio visual materials dating back to the early 1980s. These unique recordings document locally significant cultural songs and performance, sites, community events, stories and oral histories in language. However, these significant collections held on country in dusty and humid conditions will not survive without the tools, skills, dedicated facilities and resources to ensure they are preserved for future generations.
Since the early 1980s, tens of thousands of video and audio tapes and photographs have been recorded in remote communities by Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people and organisations.
The Warlpiri Media Archive at Yuendumu has been recognised as a nationally significant collection, however it includes thousands of VHS tapes that are rapidly deteriorating. The collection at Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association contains more than 50,000 hours of video recordings dating back to the early 1980s.
The Indigenous Remote Communications Association (IRCA) is setting out to develop a National Strategy for Remote Indigenous Media Archives. IRCA, the peak representative body for remote Indigenous media and communications, has partnered with national cultural institutions, NT agencies, existing archive projects, and Indigenous media organisations to commence development on a national strategy to preserve the collections and to make appropriate materials available for community access.