Hey you mob, just an update on the Gathering Place during this second period of quarantine. We hope you are all staying COVID-safe and are all OK.

We have been trying to maintain contact with you all via Facebook, messaging and online programs as well as offering community support and dropping off weekly meals for Elders. For example, we are running weekly Zoom sessions for Men’s Group and Women’s group and fortnightly sessions for Bush Play Group and Deadly Kids. If you have not attended our online programs  before but would like to, email Karsten (gpc@willumwarrain.org.au) so he can send you the link. Once you attend you will automatically be sent the link going forwards.

We are always just a phone call away as well. Please contact us on 0403528 034 for a yarn or leave a message and we will get back to you and do our best to help. We are here to support mob in any way we can.

Since our closure in March, we have undergone a staff restructuring process and have appointed some new members onto our team. We are very happy to welcome Angela Eastcourt (Gunnai/ Kurnai) as our new Women’s Cultural Lead and Samantha Trist (Taungarong) as our Women’s Cultural Support. Both Angela and Sam are excited to be involved in delivering our deadly Bush Kids Playgroup and Women’s Group when we reopen and will bring a lot of cultural knowledge and experience to their roles. Both Neil Brew and Nola White are very excited to take on new positions supporting Elders and Carers and our Community Gardening program, respectively. Eamon Roberts will continue in our Men’s program as the Men’s Cultural Support role.

Waa at 6pm, Friday 24th July 2020

Willum Warrain was also fortunate enough to receive funding from the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, through the Working for Victoria program enabling us to employ Bree Webster (Wathaurong), Sean Barker (Kamu), Kyah Stephens (Ngunnawal) and Joshua Cottier (Gunditjmara) in grounds maintenance and community support roles. The idea behind this grant is for our new team to complete key projects like the community vegetable garden and the Men’s hut as well as keep the property operational for when we reopen. In addition, the gathering place is undergoing a regular cleaning regime and will have a deep clean before we restart. Many of our Elders have now met Sean too on his weekly food drop offs which are much appreciated.

We recently received some exciting news from a local philanthropy, Ripe for Change, who have invested in Willum Warrain and our community food production/ knowledge sharing. Nola White has commenced in her new role as Community Gardener and the fruits of her labours will be shared at our Friday Big Mob Cook Ups once we return to normal.

Pictured this week at Willum Warrain (and they are all smiling at you – you just can’t tell!) are Nola, Justine, Bree and Kyah. They were working hard on cleaning up both inside and out so that the Gathering Place will be spic and span for community’s return!

And finally the dynamic duo, Sean and Josh, ready for action!