Djilba Season (August - September 2022)
Centre for Stories' Micro-Excursion
Centre for Stories (Northbridge) had a micro-excursion to our Centre this June. The excursion included nine young adults who were given a tour of the precinct and the woodland and wetland areas of significance around the Centre. Participants were also given prompts (and information pertaining to the prompts) to inspire poetry writing. Everyone enjoyed a picnic-style lunch of pizza and cake in our waterwise gardens while also reading some beautifully crafted poems and exchanging stories with the rest of the group.
"We are so lucky to have been invited down to the Centre. It was a beautiful day for learning about the many stories of wetlands in the Cockburn area. The Centre is a lovely and welcoming place. If you get a chance, we highly recommend paying the Centre a visit."
Peter Jeffery's Poetry Book Launched at the Centre
Peter Jeffery (OAM) launched his third major collection of poetry—A General Much Tired of War—at the Centre this July. The collection was launched by Lucy Dougan, Poetry Editor of UWA's Westerly Magazine, who gave an impressive launch speech and spoke about the importance of poetry in social and cultural contexts. The event was celebrated by Peter's close friends and family, the publisher (Hive Mind Press), and a large and invested group of well-wishers (including representatives from WA Poets Inc.). Peter's book was available to be purchased at the event.
The gathering was treated to some exquisite music by the internationally renowned player Tam Thai, a blind musician who plays the Đàn nguyệt (Moon Lute), a two-stringed traditional Vietnamese musical instrument. This event exposed the Centre to a new audience that has traditionally seen such events happen mostly north of the river, or only as far south as Fremantle. Everyone was pleasantly surprised by the natural splendour of the Centre and hope to return.
Planting Event with Rio Tinto
A group from Rio Tinto made it out to the wetlands for a special planting event at the Narma Kullarck boardwalk in July. The group also hired the Education Room for a day-long information session. The boardwalk area now looks significantly full and lush with new saplings in the ground, thanks to the group's hard work and effort. The planting event was organised and supervised by Denise and Lanie with help from vollies from the Centre.
Turtle Trackers Program Underway
The Turtle Trackers Program is now underway with the City of Cockburn hosting the Community Information Session and Community Training Session at WA Wildlife and the Centre in the past couple of weeks this month. A number of vollies have already signed up to be the new Turtle Trackers for the program and you will soon see them on the ground, particularly around the wetland areas, in their high-viz vests and towing their turtle kits.
The project thankfully received a much-needed funding boost this year to ramp up this citizen science engagement and education initiative in local governments and community groups. We are sure this monetary support will go a long way in delivering better outcomes for the species and preventing further decline.
You can read more here: Funding boost to save iconic snake-necked turtles
Caution: Work in Progress
The transformation of the 30-year-old main building continues. We now have new floors laid out in the gallery area and the hall. And because the edifice still has that old-world feel, our Centre became the subject of interest for a film! The bare walls and floor were turned into a canvas for a crew that metamorphosed the space into a 1990s Police station for a day. So now we have a new recorded memory of the Centre on film (albeit in a modified state).
The next focus area in the ongoing renovation is the kitchen— turning it into a modern space that will cater to the needs of all our events and hirees. This room is going to be a lot more convenient. Plus we're working on a simple transformation that is going to turn it into it one of the most delightful rooms in the Centre.
There is an exciting new plan in place for the look and feel of the gallery and hall areas that is sure to amaze and aptly reflect our vision, mission and environs, and works will begin soon!
We have managed to find new homes for most of our kitchen and storage cabinetry. There is still one decent set of cupboards that we're hoping someone would be interested in. Drop into the Centre if you want to have a look.
Please note that access to the Centre will be limited due to the ongoing capital works. Due to construction hazards and the risk of exposure to undiscovered or potentially present contaminants such as asbestos, Centre operations will be running at limited capacity. Although certain sections will be open, we request that you schedule any visits or bookings well in advance to avoid disappointment. The works began mid-June and are expected to last until mid to late September 2022.