The construction of Wyndham’s newest community centre and integrated family centre is now complete, with services scheduled to commence from January 2020.
Wyndham City Mayor, Cr Mia Shaw, said the Wunggurrwil Dhurrung Centre in Wyndham Vale is a state-of-the-art building that will service the fast-growing community into the future.
“We know that Wyndham is one of the fastest growing populations in Australia, home to more than 270,000 people, with that figure expected to increase by a further 74 per cent over the next 18 years,” Cr Shaw said.
“It’s important that we have the necessary infrastructure in place to service our community, and that’s exactly what this $13.2 million Wyndham City project will do.”
“The Wyndham Vale community can now enjoy a centre with three kindergarten rooms, a beautiful playground, a range of consulting rooms for maternal and child health and other services, and two community activity rooms for larger functions.”
“Wyndham is home to the highest proportion of Aboriginal people in Greater Melbourne, which is why the centre has been co-designed with a committee of Aboriginal community leaders and representatives.”
“The co-located Aboriginal Community Centre is such an important component of this building. It will provide a dedicated space for Aboriginal people to strengthen community and cultural development, and improve the coordination and delivery in services and programs offered locally.”
“It will be culturally safe, providing a space to host community services and events. People using the building, especially young people, will learn about culture just by being in the building.”
“This will help to address the service needs of local Aboriginal people, provide pathways to education, training and employment, and provide a place to celebrate culture and identity.”
Cr Shaw said the building itself was impressive, with a unique design that encouraged both outdoor and indoor activity.
“One of my favourite features is the heart – the open space at the centre of the building that connects it all together. The name of the centre – Wunggurrwill Dhurrung – means ‘strong heart’, which is definitely fitting.”
“I have no doubt that the nature-based play spaces will be a hit with the kids, keeping them busy outdoors. Local native plantings and the use of natural materials throughout the centre, connect the building to its natural surroundings, including the Werribee River.”
“The facility is a five star Green Star building, demonstrating our commitment to a cleaner, greener and more sustainable Wyndham.”
“The Wunggurrwil Dhurrung Centre has been built on Wadawurrung Country, which is why we’ve worked collaboratively with the traditional owners from the beginning of this process, especially through sharing their language in naming the centre, rooms within the centre, and services.”
Cr Shaw said she was pleased to see construction of the centre complete after an extensive, collaborative and detailed process.
“The design of this centre was community-led, with the Koling wada-ngal Committee playing an invaluable role. Their passion, commitment and vision has been paramount to achieving the final product. On behalf of Council, I thank the committee members and community for their hard work,” Cr Shaw said.
Cr Shaw also thanked the State Government for its contribution of $3.16 million towards the project.
Co-chairs of the Koling wada-ngal Committee, Rob Monohan and Karen Jackson celebrated the completion of works.
“This project was first talked about back in 2013 by various Aboriginal groups and government organisations. Since then, there has been a lot of hard work by done by both the local Aboriginal community and Wyndham Council,” Mr Monohan said.
“Most important is the engagement and conversations with the Aboriginal community in Wyndham about their vision, with the end result being an Aboriginal home in Aboriginal hands – the Wunggurrwil Dhurrung Centre,” Ms Jackson said.
The Wunggurrwil Dhurrung Centre will be operated under a tri-party model, consisting of Wyndham City Council, Koling wada-ngal Committee, and One Tree Family Services. While construction is complete, services will commence from the centre in January 2020.