The Jindi Woraback Children’s Centre has developed a partnership with the Moondani Bullak Indigenous Studies Unit at Victoria University, helping the service embed a respectful and authentic Indigenous program into everyday practice.
This program of art, stories, songs, dance, music and visits from local Aboriginal groups and individuals, promotes and sustains family and child connection to land and country through links to Australian Indigenous heritage.
Staff from Indigenous Studies Units share the creation stories of the local Kulin Nation with educators and children. The service regularly celebrates its Indigenous roots by inviting a Yorta Yorta woman from the Indigenous Studies Unit to perform smoking ceremonies to show respect for the spirits of the land.
Children’s experience of these events is not limited to special occasions, but is extended into children’s everyday learning.
Children visit the local Indigenous Garden (called Iramoo Field Station) where they hear stories about how the land and animals began. The children explore the grasslands, wetlands and the Indigenous plant nursery, where teachers teach the children the names of native plants and their uses for healing, cooking and creating art and craft. They explore Indigenous ways of being and belonging in dramatic play and discuss the importance of culture, family and the ways everyone celebrates their difference.