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Local schools benefit from NAIDOC scholarships

Four local schools have been awarded scholarships as part of NAIDOC celebrations.

Local schools benefit from NAIDOC scholarships

Students from the Mildura Primary School HOPE program perform cultural dancing at the NAIDOC celebration.

Ouyen P-12 School, Mildura Specialist School, Mildura Primary School and Irymple Primary School have each received a $1000 scholarship, courtesy of the annual NAIDOC scholarship program run by the Mallee Catchment Management Authority (CMA), Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE), Parks Victoria and the Department of Primary Industries (DPI).

The scholarships are awarded each year as part of the agencies’ NAIDOC celebrations and have injected $27,000 into local schools since the program began in 2006.

Many of the scholarship recipients have chosen to use the money to either support Indigenous students or improve students’ knowledge of Indigenous culture.

The scholarships were presented as part of NAIDOC celebrations held on July 15, which were organised jointly by the Mallee CMA, DSE, Parks Victoria and DPI and held at the DPI Complex in Irymple. While NAIDOC Week is traditionally celebrated from July 4 to 11, the scholarship presentation was held after NAIDOC Week to allow school students to return from school holidays.

The theme of this year’s NAIDOC celebration was “Unsung heroes – closing the gap by leading their way”. The celebration included a presentation and didgeridoo playing by local DSE employee Willie Hannah Rodgers, as well as cultural dancing by students from the HOPE program at Mildura Primary School.

“The Mallee CMA is really proud to be part of the NAIDOC scholarship program because it’s another way we can make a positive difference to lives of young people in our region,” Mallee CMA board chair Joan Burns said.

“Over the past four years, this scholarship program has been beneficial to a number of local schools, including St Joseph’s College in Mildura, which has used the scholarship it received in 2009 to create a wall mural of more than 250 tiles painted by the students."

“This mural is being installed in coming weeks and is something the school will be able to treasure for years to come.”

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