PBCs take care of country, in a range of contexts, and bring unique experience to that work, reflecting the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture throughout Australia. PBCs also have a common context and common challenges in which they operate. Many PBC decisions involve land and water management, engaging with government around service delivery, carrying out and maintaining traditional and contemporary land use activities and creating development opportunities and enterprises to improve the wellbeing of their native title communities.
Most PBCs carry out significant unpaid work with negotiated settlements or consent determinations often lacking ‘inbuilt’ funding mechanisms. However all PBCs are committed to their role as custodians of country and need to be supported in achieving aspirations for independence in looking after country and representing their own interests to those in government and decision making powers.
- hold, protect and manage determined native title in accordance with the objectives of the native title holding group; and
- ensure certainty for governments and other parties interested in accessing or regulating native title land and waters by providing a legal entity to manage and conduct the affairs of the native title holders.
In addition to carrying out their statutory functions, PBCs enagage in a diverse range of activities on country that include:
- mining and resource sector agreements
- land and water conservation partnerships
- pastoral, agricultural and farming activity
- research partnerships
- return to country programs
- recording and archiving cultural information