2016 The Year in Review

Our students and staff have enjoyed another successful year, and we celebrate the year with this 2016 Year in review book. We hope you enjoy some of the images captured throughout the year.

Worawa Term 4 Newsletter 2016

Presentation Day

Lois Peeler, Executive Director Presentation Day Speech 2016.

“On behalf of the Worawa Community, it is my pleasure to welcome you all here today. It is lovely to see so many families, friends and supporters here to join us in our day of celebration.

Worawa Aboriginal College is now in its 33 year of operation. Worawa is an Aboriginal initiative, owned and governed by Aboriginal people, for our Aboriginal young people. While the semantics may only subtly differ from other indigenous places of learning, it is important to note that at Worawa we formulate our programs to support Aboriginal ways of knowing as well as mainstream understandings.”…

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Writing Project: Telling Our Stories Our Way

All of the students were privileged to be involved in two sessions of workshops with Tony, being inspired by his humour, creativity and passion for owning and telling your own stories. He delivered a very strong message about the power of storytelling, in any form, for keeping your own identity and your culture strong.

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Kids Teaching Kids

The girls in Blue group took on a big challenge this term. In class, they used both internet research and first-hand accounts to prepare detailed Powerpoints on the Stolen Generations. The students practised their presentations in front of the class before going to Badger Creek Primary School to teach the Year 5 and 6 students.

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Download term 4 newsletter 2016

Click here to download PDF.

Presentation Day Program 2016

At Worawa Aboriginal College we formulate our programs to support Aboriginal ways of knowing, doing and being. On Presentation Day we celebrate the achievements of our students as we prepare them to ‘Walk in both Worlds’ and take their place as global citizens, well versed in their Aboriginal culture and proud of their identity as First Australians. We are delighted to announce the celebratory program.


Awards Ceremony Program 2016

Commencing at 11.00am

  • Call to Ceremony – Smoking Ceremony
  • Acknowledgement of Traditional Owners – Worawa students
  • Welcome – MC Kylie Belling
  • Australian Chamber Orchestra Inspire Quartet & Didgeridoo compilation with Koorie Musician Robert Bamblett
  • Traditional Dance group
  • Musical rendition by Yorta Yorta soprano Deborah Cheetham AO
  • Principal’s address
  • Student speech
  • Contemporary Dance Presentation
  • Keynote Address – Ms Deborah Cheetham AO
  • Parents Address
  • Anthology Launch
  • Student Awards
  • Guest artist Lillee Walker; Short Black Opera with Worawa student group.
  • Closing Remarks

Presentation Day 2016

On our Presentation Day we will acknowledge and reward the achievement of our students and we extend an invitation to you to join us in this celebration. Following the Awards Ceremony guests may adjourn to the Sandra Bardas Gallery to view a collection of art works by students and the communities that they come from.

Presentation Day Key Note Speaker – Deborah Cheetham AO

Deborah Cheetham, Yorta Yorta woman, soprano, composer and educator has been a familiar voice in the Australian arts landscape for more than 25 years. In the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours List, Deborah was appointed as an Office of the Order of Australia (AO), for distinguished service to the performing arts as an opera singer, composer and artistic director, to the development of Indigenous artists, and to innovation in performance.

In March 2015 Deborah Cheetham AO was inducted onto the Victorian Honour Roll of Women. Deborah is Artistic Director of Short Black Opera a national not-for-profit opera company devoted to the development of Indigenous talent. Her landmark opera Pecan Summer at the Sydney Opera House was a huge success.


Event Details & RSVP

When: Wednesday 14th December 2016
Time: 11.00am
Where: 60-80 Barak Lane, Healesville
RSVP: Call 03 5962 4344
or email admin@worawa.vic.edu.au
by 7 December, 2016

Sandra Bardas Art Gallery

Updated 1 April 2020. 

We wish to advise that the Sandra Bardas Art Gallery, situated on the grounds of Worawa Aboriginal College, 60-80 Barak Lane, Healesville, has ceased operation. The closure is effective immediately. Work is being undertaken to repurpose the space to create an Aboriginal Resource Centre to focus on Aboriginal History and Culture.

We thank you for your support.

Sandra Bardas Art Gallery

The Sandra Bardas Art Gallery showcases authentic and affordable Aboriginal art produced by students of Worawa College and the communities they come from.

Situated on College grounds, the gallery is named in honour of Sandra Bardas OAM who worked with the Founder, Hyllus Maris to establish Victoria’s first and only Aboriginal school. A feature of life at Worawa that brings together Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal learning is the exquisite art work on display. Reflecting stories of community, family and land, the designs of wonderfully expressive paintings are now incorporated into fabric patterns and are displayed alongside original costume jewellery. As well as student work, the gallery displays art from the students’ home communities and demonstrates the holistic and creative nature of learning for all to see.

Our friendly and informative staff are available to assist you with any enquiries including selection, gift wrapping, and worldwide delivery options.

Gallery Hours & Location
By appointment only.
Address: 60 – 80 Barak Lane, Healesville VIC 3777
Email: artgallery@worawa.vic.edu.au
Direct Phone: 0498 967 292 (0498-WORAWA)

Worawa Term 3 Newsletter 2016

Debutante Dreaming 2016

Debutante Dreaming 2016

Debutante Dreaming 2016 was a wonderful success. Of course, the girls looked stunning in their beautiful, white gowns and perfectly styled hair, but this event is so much more than dresses and makeup.

Debutante Dreaming is the culmination of a program called ‘Pathways to Womanhood.’ This programs supports and promotes healthy living, positive thinking and cultural pride. So, there is a lot of deep learning and diligent work that goes into each student’s participation in the Debutante Dreaming Event.

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Elders are an integral and pivotal part of every Indigenous community. Elders’ guidance facilitates the passing on of cultural knowledge across the generations, celebrating and revitalising Aboriginal cultural heritage and fostering pride in Aboriginal identity.

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Science at Worawa this term focussed on the topic of “The Human Body”. The term started an overview of Indigenous Health Issues to give context to what the students would be learning and why it is important. Some of the issues discussed included Diabetes, Otitis Media (Middle Ear Infection) and Kidney Disease.

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Wellness and the Art Therapy

Art Therapy has been introduced to Worawa this year as part of the school’s Wellbeing approach. Art Therapy is a form of counselling which can address emotional issues through the combination of the therapy relationship and the art process. A large component of the Art Therapy program consists of individual sessions for students having difficulties learning or focusing in class.

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Health and PE

During Health and PE this term the students learned why it is important to be healthy and how exercise and fitness can help us mentally and physically. They also looked at the factors that can motivate or prevent them from taking care of themselves and participating in sport and fitness.

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Fitness at Worawa

There is plenty of action in the gym this semester. Our personal trainer Meaghan Donald is opening the doors at 7 am for keen aspiring athletes and those seeking to improve their fitness and general wellbeing.

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Sports Academy

On the last weekend of the school term, Worawa hosted the AFL Victoria Female Kickstart Indigenous and Multicultural camp to promote culture and sport for girls born 2001 and 2002 from across Victoria.

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Download term 3 newsletter 2016

Click here to download PDF.

Young talent in Worawa Sports Academy

The Worawa Sports Academy caters specifically for young Aboriginal women, is based on an integrated Education, Culture and Wellbeing model and operates in an Aboriginal environment.

Australian Rules Football (AFL) forms the foundation ‘sport’ but also includes other team sports including soccer, netball, basketball, softball and soon, cricket.

This year we have seen the establishment of the Worawa AFL Umpiring Diversity Academy and the Lady Eaglehawk football team. A number of students have been selected to participate in the inaugural V-Line Youth Girls Cup, an AFL talent pathway in line with the TAC CUP regions which provides a pathway into an AFL talent program. Worawa students have been identified for their football ability and have the opportunity to be involved in a program where they will be provided with extra development to further their football talent.

As part of the AFL Female Kickstart/All Nations Pathway Program Worawa will host the AFL Victoria Female Diversity Future Leaders State Camp 10 -11 September in the lead up to the National Female Diversity Championships to be held 19-21 September.

Take a listen to Young Mbantua Born Shaquille Swan-Sharpe interview on the Caama Sports Show.

Debutante Dreaming 2016

Hurry, tickets selling fast. Buy your tickets now!

Debutante Dreaming is a fusion of traditional Aboriginal ceremonial practice and Western tradition to honour our young women’s transition to adulthood – a rite of passage celebrated universally.

Groove to the music of NAJA with virtuoso guitarist Nathanial Andrew and artists from the Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts. Special guest appearance by vocalist Kaleena Briggs from the renowned Stiff Gins.

MC Dr Anita Heiss writer, satirist and Ambassador of Worawa Aboriginal College.

Slient auction of a special artwork produced by Gamilaraay artist Arkeria Armstrong and the Debutantes

Join us to celebrate an evening to remember – Showcasing Aboriginal culture and talent.

Hurry, tickets selling fast.

Pullman on the Park,
East Melbourne

When: Saturday, 20 August 2016

Time: 7.00pm to 11.00pm

Contact Lisa on 0498 967 292
or email: artgallery@worawa.vic.edu.au

$130 per person – 3 course meal,
Drinks at bar prices.

Dress: Cocktail

Worawa Term 2 Newsletter 2016


Reconciliation sports carnival

National Reconciliation Week saw the annual Worawa Reconciliation Sports Carnival. On this day our community, partner schools, friends and supporters come together in the true Spirit of Reconciliation. The day commenced with cultural activities. Local band Ruckus set the scene with a rousing rendition of ‘Standing on Sacred Ground’, joined by Aboriginal musicians from the iconic Indigenous bands Coloured Stone and No Fixed Address.

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Careers at Worawa

CareersAtWorawa Work Experience is an essential part of our Careers Curriculum and reinforces the practical application of the Employability Skills framework. Our work experience program enables students to experience working environments and meet people working in industries that they may decide to enter in future.

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Science at Worawa

 Science at Worawa this term focussed on the topic of “Sustainability”. The term started with a number of guest speakers talking to and educating the girls on how Aboriginal people have been living sustainably on the land for thousands of years.

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The Arts

Worawa has a continued commitment to delivering a full and inspiring educational experience that includes a comprehensive Arts program. In each area of the Arts, an Aboriginal perspective is considered to be essential.

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Sports at Worawa

Worawa has a proud history of involvement in sport with a number of past graduates involved at the elite level of Australian Rules football. The Worawa AFL Sports Academy was initially launched in 2009 before Worawa changed from co-ed to an all-girls school.

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Debutante Dreaming

Debutante Dreaming is a fusion of traditional Aboriginal ceremonial practice and Western tradition to honour our young women’s transition to adulthood – a rite of passage celebrated universally.

Read more

Sandra Bardas Art Gallery

Open to the public, the Sandra Bardas Art Gallery is situated on College grounds. The gallery is named in honour of Sandra Bardas OAM who worked with the Founder, Hyllus Maris to establish Victoria’s first and only Aboriginal school.

Read more

Download term 2 newsletter 2016

Click here to download PDF.

Reconciliation Sports Carnival

Sports Carnival 24th May