Featured Grant: Koorie Heritage Trust New technology for a new era: website and database upgrade
The Koorie Heritage Trust promotes awareness and appreciation of the diversity of Koorie culture. This grant is enabling the organisation to upgrade its old website and build a powerful new database, improving its ability to deliver services.
The Koorie Heritage Trust is an Indigenous-owned and managed not-for-profit that has grown from a small community organisation into a significant cultural icon. In 2015 it turned 30 and relocated to new premises at Federation Square.
It works towards the broader goal of reconciliation for all Australians. It also cares for the only public collection in Victoria dedicated solely to Koorie art and culture. The collection contains more than 100,000 items including; artefacts, artworks, stone tools, photographs, library items and oral history recordings.
This grant is for the development and implementation of a powerful new database that is compatible with the existing website. It will vastly improve the organisation’s ability to manage its diverse operations.
Tom Mosby, CEO, says the database will facilitate more effective, dependable and secure day-to-day operations at the Koorie Heritage Trust, and deliver better outcomes for audiences accessing the organisation’s wealth of cultural material.
“The new website and database will give us the opportunity for much greater, more meaningful engagement with our Indigenous and non-Indigenous stakeholders.”
Phase one of the project has been completed, with the enormous task of all the Trust’s data being entered into the new database. The Koorie Heritage Trust now employs a full-time administrator to check that all records are accurate and up-to-date. Phase two of the project, implementing the point of sale system, is planned to coincide with the launch of the new website in late 2015.
Featured Grant: Centre for International Child Health R E Ross Trust Regional Fellowship Program
For our nearest neighbour Papua New Guinea, almost 60 out of every 1000 children will die before reaching school age, compared with four out of every 1000 in Australia. The children in PNG die from preventable diseases including pneumonia, malnutrition, diarrhoea, tuberculosis, low-birth weight, severe newborn infections, and HIV. In PNG and the Pacific many more children do not reach their development potential because of illness and under-nutrition. Underlying causes include poor education, poverty and unsafe environments.
Since 2005, the Trust has been working with the Centre for International Child Health to run a Regional Fellowship program for doctors and nurses working in child health in PNG. The program aims to develop much needed leadership skills in child health.
This year the program has continued its focus on training in PNG, conducted by the paediatricians for health workers in several provinces, and training of junior paediatricians in Port Moresby. The Fellowship has supported research into the common causes of child illness and death, including in malnutrition, pneumonia, tuberculosis, child protection and care of newborn babies.
In 2013-14 Dr Gwenda Anga trained in paediatrician oncology at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne as part of the program and in 2015 it is hoped that the program will support the training in Melbourne of a paediatrician from PNG who specialises in child disability.
Featured Grant: Abbotsford Convent Foundation Towards the Abbotsford Convent Interpretive Signage project
The Abbotsford Convent Foundation used the grant to manufacture and install 27 external signs around the Convent site to tell the story of the place, its different ‘occupations’, the history and uses of the buildings and detail many of the publically accessible rooms in the ground floor spaces. The signs also feature information about the site’s current uses. There were also a further 13 signs produced and installed in the upper public hallways of the Convent building, further telling the site’s story.
There is now interpretive signage across the site, available for viewing by members of the public who visit The Convent for free. The project was thoughtfully and thoroughly implemented by the Abbotsford Convent Foundation. The signage has made an important contribution for visitors, stakeholders (Good Shepherd Sisters, Indigenous communities, the Abbotsford Convent Coalition) and will provide a permanent legacy of the site which is now used by the broader community].
Featured Grant: Baltara School Towards the ‘My Dreams’ project
Baltara School is a multi-campus Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) School which caters for students aged 9 to 17 years who are ‘at-risk students’ with significant social, emotional and behavioural challenges. Many have experienced trauma, poverty, abuse and neglect and many have only attended school intermittently because of their personal circumstances. Baltara School aims to provide students with relevant, interesting and developmental educational experiences.
Baltara has a large open space where the boys take their breaks and play ball games. The walls enclosing part of the length of the space are 20 metres long and four metres high so in partnership with artist in residence, Sarah Faulkner, Baltara developed the ‘My Dreams’ whereby the students painted a mural on the wall that signified and reflected their dreams for the future.
The mural was an incredibly rich, colourful and diverse piece of work with subject matter that related to the young people’s own lives and what is important to them.
The Trust learnt in 2014 that an administrative decision of DHS was made to remove the mural. The Trust was disappointed that this occurred.