The Centre for Aboriginal Independence and Enterprise (CAIE) was formed to foster cultural, social and community expression and assist to realise enhanced self-esteem and economic independence for Indigenous people. The Centre strives to enhance existing alliances between the Indigenous and the non-Indigenous community in a show of collective unity, trust and openness about where we find ourselves and how we may address key issues for the future which will benefit all of us. The Centre helps to generate new opportunities for the Indigenous community to move beyond reliance on government agencies and bureaucracies.
CAIE is an independent, not-for-profit organization with no political or religious affiliations and conducts its business and advocacy in a fair, nonprejudicial manner. Over the past few years, The CAIE has been involved in a study to research and collate information on the financial aspirations of Indigenous people and what limitations they currently experience dealing with the banking sector. Indigenous people are regarded as the most impoverished group in the Australian community and remain under represented as participants in the broader economy, facing barriers to accessing financial services and therefore having fewer opportunities to build wealth.
It is against this background that the CAIE will establish an Indigenous owned and operated financial institution. Initially based in South East Queensland and later servicing customers across a larger geographic market, the Indigenous Banking Project will deliver appropriate financial products, services (including financial literacy training and counseling) and pricing to Indigenous individuals, organisations and businesses to help create wealth and capability within communities. The CAIE believes Indigenous people across Queensland, with a little support, have the capacity for economic and social restructuring, which can lead to greater independence and will promote a stronger economic future for many generations of Aboriginal people.
Interview with Hugh Kirk (304kb) - Uncle Hugh Kirk is an Aboriginal Elder from Inala in Brisbane. He’s very supportive of an Indigenous bank for his own people, because he remembers the times of the ‘stolen wages’.