Our Beginning

Worawa Aboriginal College purchased the property ‘Barak Park’ in 1985 through funding from the Commonwealth Government and the Worawa College Buildings and Land Fund Raising Committee. Prior to its acquisition by Worawa Aboriginal College, the property was used as a school holiday camp and grazing land. The 55-hectare property located in Healesville is of particular importance to the Aboriginal community as it once formed part of the Coranderrk Aboriginal Station and is in close proximity to the Coranderrk Aboriginal Cemetery.

This site is of great cultural and historical significance to many Victorian Aboriginal families displaced by colonization. Coranderrk Aboriginal Station was established in 1863, to provide land for the “last of the Kulin” clans, custodians of traditional lands and forests east of Melbourne. Following dispossession and dispersal from traditional lands, family clans from other parts of Victoria were also relocated to Coranderrk, creating a rich cultural mix and history. For a time, the Station thrived, with successful agricultural enterprises including the growing of hops, and tourism based on the production of artefacts and woven baskets. Forced removal of many of the residents, and resumption of much of the land left the Station unviable. Coranderrk was closed in 1924.