Bubup Wilam Aboriginal Child and Family Centre
Bubup Wilam Aboriginal Child and Family Centre, meaning ‘Children’s Place’ in Woi Wurrung, is an Aboriginal community-controlled education, health and well-being organisation in Thomastown, Naarm (Melbourne). Bubup Wilam aims to ensure that local Aboriginal communities can make decisions that directly affect them and exercise their right to self-determination in a meaningful and effective way.
Bubup Wilam is committed to working with families to raise strong, proud, and deadly kids in a culturally rich and supportive educational environment. Bubup Wilam enables children to begin their journey to reach their full human potential at an early age. Bubup Wilam reinforce children’s strong sense of Aboriginal identities and personal self-esteem and helps to lay the foundation for lifelong learning, health and well-being. Bubup Wilam do this by providing quality, culturally safe, and accessible care and education for children aged 0-5 years.
As an accredited and culturally safe education facility for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children are given space to lead learning and teaching activities, to be themselves, to play and explore in a way that builds upon their strong and proud Aboriginal identities in partnership with their families.
Children’s Aboriginal identities are the catalyst that underpins their educational program and their experience at Bubup Wilam. This includes ensuring children’s curriculum is underpinned by truth-telling of the history of this country and supporting children with the skills and knowledge to thrive in a world that denies who they are. Bubup Wilam further integrates this through their incredible Connection to Country program, taking children out of the classroom one day a week to learn in and from Country. To further strengthen community cohesion and solidarity, children are informed about their kinship and community ties through ancestry maps and photographs.
Their work doesn't end there. Bubup Wilam is one of only three service providers in the country to offer preventive and early childhood intervention services. This includes allied health services such as hearing tests, speech pathologists, visits to general practitioners, a comprehensive primary school integration program, and access to other health care services without fear, shame, racism, and without the burden of additional, often prohibitive, time-consuming costs and need to take time off work.
Bubup Wilam works to eliminate cultural biases and privileges within the education system, and strengthen community values of cohesion and resilience, building stronger communities now and in the future. Each child at Bubup Wilam holds a valuable place in cultural continuity with the ability to thrive in society. Bubup Wilam raises children to be confident, determined and strong, knowing they reflect the strengths of their ancestors and with the mindset and resilience to act like little leaders now and as influential Elders in the future.