A 100-percent First Nations community owned and operated café in the remote town of Roebourne has reopened its doors thanks to a partnership with an Australian corporate living out the values of thinking globally and acting locally.

Ieramugadu Café and Gallery, run by Ngarluma and Yindjibarndi Foundation Limited (NYFL), is a social enterprise café owned by the local Traditional Owner community of Ieramugadu (Roebourne). The café provides a place-based, culturally safe space for locals to pursue a career in hospitality.

Due to the age of the building and lack of regular maintenance, the café space required urgent repair to remain open to the community.

NYFL partnered with leader in sustainable food, hospitality, and facility management services, Sodexo Australia (Sodexo), who invested more than $70,000 and 100 hours of labour, to upgrade the café and secure the longevity of the community hub for Roebourne’s majority First Nations community.

NYFL Director and Ngarluma woman, Josie Samson, said:

“The café gives our Elders a culturally safe space. It provides a career and training pathway for our young people. For our mob, having safe space is important for community, and community is everything."

Many senior Elders from Roebourne enjoy coming into the café, especially when it means supporting their grandchildren who are training as baristas and learning hospitality skills.

NYFL CEO, Sean-Paul Stephens, said the partnership with Sodexo has been key to key to providing pathways for employment and improving the liveability of Roebourne.

“The partnership between Sodexo and NYFL has been a long-standing one, characterised by support on the ground that goes over and above what we have come to expect from our partners,” he said.

“Going beyond monetary support and donated goods, Sodexo has embedded themselves in our values of community-led purpose. It’s an important lesson for other corporates—that listening and being agile is important for the community. Sodexo heard what was important, and the next day they had a plan to help. That’s impressive.”

“Sodexo have not engaged just to create a pipeline of jobs into industry, they are supporting the community thrive in its own right. That is important for self-determination, which is central to NYFL’s purpose.”

Working together for more than five years, Sodexo and NYFL formalised their partnership with a 2023 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which committed Sodexo to provide community training pathways, employment opportunities, knowledge sharing, and sustainable business enterprise opportunity.


The café refurbishment, which saw Sodexo overhaul and upgrade the café’s freezer and cold room, kitchen and food prep area, as well as upgrade electricals, is only one aspect of action taken by the business to support Indigenous in community.

Leveraging its extensive freight network to deliver food and resources to the remote community at no cost, Sodexo has helped to protect the café’s supply chain from rising inflation and cost of living impacts.

Sodexo Australia Managing Director, Keith Weston, said:

“With close to 100 sites that we service in some of Australia’s most remote areas, we have the responsibility to support and advance the communities in which we live and work.”

“We are proud to give back to the Roebourne’s unique community, recognising barriers to nutritious and affordable food that people typically living in remote locations face every day.

“By upgrading the community owned Ieramugadu Café and Gallery we commit to the maintenance of the space to provide a place of opportunity for the community now and into future generations.”

Sharing in the vision of a reconciled Australia, Sodexo and NYFL’s commitment to delivering outcomes for Indigenous Australian’s starts with everyday action in community.

Read more about the partnership here

About Sodexo Australia

Sodexo in Australia employs a diverse workforce of over 5,000 employees. Sodexo delivers a unique array of over 100 integrated services lines, including cleaning, catering, facilities management, aerodrome services, concierge, security, asset and building maintenance and hospitality services in the following segments: Corporate Strategic Accounts and Energy & Resources, both on and offshore.

About Ngarluma Yindjibarndi Foundation Ltd (NYFL)

The Ngarluma and Yindjibarndi Foundation Ltd (NYFL) is a Traditional Owner organisation that delivers social and economic outcomes for its members and the broader community of Ieramagardu (Roebourne) and beyond.   

Media Contact

Madeline Jones
0403 877 300 | 07 3180 3666

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