ICACC tour gives insight into Aboriginal culture and history in Bass Coast

ICACC tour attended Wonthaggi Secondary College Learning Stones Opening

ICACC tour attended Wonthaggi Secondary College Learning Stones Opening

The third Inter Council Aboriginal Consultative Committee cultural awareness tour, held on Friday, 18 March 2016 visited several sites around Wonthaggi and Inverloch areas of Bass Coast. The tour gave insight into some little-known history of the area, as well as provided participants with informative and thought-provoking sessions on cultural and current local topics.

First stop was the Learning Stones site at Wonthaggi Secondary College, Dudley Campus, where the visit was held in conjunction with the official Learning Stones opening. A project by Koorie Engagement Support Officer, Department of Education & Early Childhood Development, Mr John Murray, Learning Stones is an identified place for cultural engagement, ceremony and instruction and is a place to start for teachers in their delivery of Indigenous content. The session included traditional welcome and smoking ceremonies.

The group was taken along the Bunurong coastal drive, stopping at Eagles Nest, where they heard the moving story behind Aboriginal freedom fighters Tunnerminnerwait, Planobeena, Maulboyheenner, Truganini and Probelattener. Ultimately Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner were captured and became the first people to be hanged in Victoria in 1842.

It was then on to Inverloch where the Bass Coast – South Gippsland Reconciliation Group gave an excellent presentation on the campaign to change the name of the McMillan electorate, highlighting crimes against Aboriginal people by Angus McMillan the so-called “Protector of Aborigines” in the 1840s.

Some sessions were impacted by the adverse weather conditions on the day, with part of the Learning Stones opening being held inside, while the bush tucker walk to Screw Creek, Inverloch was unfortunately cancelled. Despite the poor weather conditions, the tour was well attended by a diverse group including Councillors and staff of the ICACC member Councils; community members and volunteers; partner organisations and stakeholders of the ICACC member Councils; as well as Victoria Police. 

The tour was a collaborative event between Bass Coast Shire Council and ICACC. Thanks must also go to Mr John Murray; Mr Steve Parker; the Principal, staff and students of Wonthaggi Secondary College; members of the Bass Coast – South Gippsland Reconciliation Group; and Victoria Police, Casey Local Area Commander, Inspector Paul Breen.


ICACC tour increases community understanding of links between Aboriginal people and the land & sea

First site visited was Cranbourne Botanic Gardens

First site visited was Cranbourne Botanic Gardens

On 20 November the Inter Council Aboriginal Consultative Committee held its second cultural and educational tour for 2015.

The day was well attended by a diverse group of over 30 community members, Councillors, partner organisations and stakeholders of the ICACC member Councils, as well as members of Victoria Police and the CFA who took advantage of the cultural awareness training opportunity. At the end of the day participants had increased their understanding of Aboriginal culture and gained insight into the strong links between Aboriginal people and the land & sea.

The day started at Royal Botanic Gardens, Cranbourne with a guided tour of the Australian Garden and a smoking ceremony.  The group was then taken to several Aboriginal sites in Black Rock and Mordialloc, visiting fresh water wells, ochre cliffs and an Indigenous garden. This section of the tour included Boon Wurrung cultural heritage training.  The stop at Mordialloc Life Saving Club gave an early look at works on the new Indigenous Gathering Place for the City of Kingston.  See previous ICACC post for details of the project:  City of Kingston Gathering Place  

The ICACC Committee wants to thank the guides at Royal Botanic Gardens for the excellent commentary at the Australian Garden.  Also special thanks to Boon Wurrung elder, Carolyn Briggs, for her cultural heritage training, as well as Marbee who performed the smoking ceremony and added his insightful commentary, particularly about the environmental aspects of the areas. 

The ICACC tour visited sites around Black Rock area

The ICACC tour also visited sites around Black Rock area

ICACC would like to thank all those who contributed to the success of the day, particularly the community representatives, member Councils and Victoria Police, Casey Local Area Commander, Inspector Paul Breen.  The ICACC member Councils are Bass Coast Shire Council, City of Casey, Frankston City Council, City of Greater Dandenong and City of Kingston. 

Several of the sites visited on the tour are part of the Bayside Coastal Indigenous Trail, which runs 17 km. along Beach Road between Brighton and Beaumaris.   Having over 15 significant locations, the trail is well worth completing and can be downloaded in either map or audio format from Bayside Coastal Indigenous Trail

Kingston Council approves new Indigenous Gathering Place & Life Saving Club

Kingston_Logo_Narrow_colourICACC member, City of Kingston, has announced that works are set to begin on a new $4 million Life Saving Club and Indigenous Gathering Place in Mordialloc after a builder was appointed to the exciting new community building.

It will feature a state-of-the art centre for the Mordialloc Life Saving Club and an Indigenous Gathering Place and has been funded in partnership by Kingston Council ($2.94m), the Victorian Government in association with Life Saving Victoria ($1m) and the Mordialloc Surf Lifesaving Club ($100,000). FIMMA Constructions has been appointed to construct the project and works are expected to begin in October 2015.

Mayor, Geoff Gledhill, said the project was a highlight of Council’s 2015/16 Budget and would provide a valuable community asset.  “The Gathering Place will serve as a place of welcome for Aboriginal community members where they can connect, learn new skills, learn from Aboriginal Elders, undertake ceremonial activities, share cultural heritage and hear Elder talks on caring for Coastal and Sea Country,” Cr Gledhill said.  “The space could also be a resource for the broader Kingston community to learn about Aboriginal culture, to promote Aboriginal cultural heritage and to strengthen community connections.”

More info:  Kingston Council media release