Ben Christensen

Native Title
Summer 2012

My experience as an Aurora intern with South Australian Native Title Services (SANTS) was a very positive one. Firstly, I was placed at a great organisation and assigned to a great supervisor, who was a wealth of knowledge about native title and the various facets. From there I was assigned to read many books and documents pertaining to native title, in order to get me more familiar with the field that I was about to research in a more proactive way. After this reading, I was assigned to research the Yandruwandha Yawarrawarka claim group, who are located in the north-east corner of South Australia. In particular I researched the written history of their interactions with European encroachers in order to draw evidence of the Yandruwandha Yawarrawarka group’s continued association with the land, practice of traditional culture, and the individuals and families who have composed the Yandruwandha Yawarrawarka group over time. This research that I undertook was to be used as evidence in a real-life native title claim. This research would see me through to the end of my internship. After my internship at SANTS, I was offered a full-position as a professional officer, in lieu of a researcher who was leaving SANTS at the same time; a position that I accepted with relish.