In May 2012, EGF undertook to deliver the remote community pilot of the national Digital TV Switchover, incorporating the Satellite Subsidy Scheme (SSS), for the Federal Department of Broadband Communications and the Digital Economy (DBCDE). The trial delivered Viewer Access Satellite Television Service (VAST) to all eligible households in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatajrra (APY) lands of remote South Australia.
Specifically, EGF used their cultural communications expertise to establish local networks that could deliver the role of Local Community Consultants (LCC’s) to facilitate engagement with community householders and assist with the practical implementation of the rollout. The model effectively installed more than 500 residential VAST units in 15 communities and as a result, EGF successfully tendered for the NT contract that would provide VAST to all remote residential dwellings in West Arnhem, Vic Daly, Roper Gulf, Coomalie and Barkly Shire SDA’s. The NT rollout will install over 3000 residential VAST units in 87 communities with the support of 40 LCC’s - trained and employed through this project by EGF.
The SA-APY leg of the project ran from May-Dec 2012. The NT rollout began with team training in February 2013 and is currently in the final stages of install throughout the NT. We anticipate project completion by April 2014.
Official switchover to digital in the NT is on the 10 December 2013, however applications are open until January 2014.
EGF has been providing community development and cultural liaison services to the Australian Dep't of Communications for more than 10 years, including: Networking the Nation programs to facilitate delivery of telecommunications infrastructure to remote communities (2003-05); the Community Phones Program (2004-07); as Regional Agents to the Backing Indigenous Ability Program (2007-2009); as Community Liaison Officers to the Indigenous Community Phones Program (2009-current); as remote Community Liaison to Digital TV Switchover Taskforce (2011-current).