Spotlight on Cynthia Smith
Cynthia is the chairperson of the Mirnirri Store board of directors in Ali Curung, and at 27 years of age is also its youngest member. Originally from Balgo in Western Australia, she has worked at the Ali Curung store since arriving in the community in 2013.
At first, she was hesitant about taking on the role of chairperson, but now she enjoys the opportunity to lead the health and nutrition strategies of the store board. Cynthia represented the Mirnirri Store board of directors at the Food Summit held in Alice Springs in June 2021, organised by the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory (AMSANT).
“I enjoyed hearing all the different ideas at the conference on how communities can eat healthier food,” said Cynthia, who was excited to meet Outback Stores director Bess Price at the AMSANT Food Summit.
Cynthia enjoys cooking and showed Mirnirri Store managers, Rob and Helen Delugar, how to prepare a kangaroo tail stew, which proved to be so popular it sold out the moment they were put on sale.
Cynthia hopes to see more young people employed in the communities because it is through working that they find out what talents they possess and grow in self-confidence. She thinks that the community store is an ideal learning environment
for young people, in part thanks to the qualities of the current store managers.
“They are good to work with. They help when somebody is struggling. They are very patient and kind to everyone. And always happy,” said Cynthia about Mirnirri Store managers Rob and Helen Delugar.
Cynthia is looking forward to developing her formal training by learning more about governance so that she can bring new skills to her role as chairperson of the Mirnirri Store board.
Story first published in the Outback Stores 2021 Annual Report.