What better place to re-develop a Cultural Centre than opposite an existing attraction that gets 450,000 visitors each year. Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation (WWWCHAC) is the company representing the interest of Wurundjeri, traditional owners of extensive country around Melbourne.
Galeena Beek was originally built in the early 1990s and ran as a cultural centre where the Indigenous population could meet, celebrate their culture, display artwork and engage with the community. The property is a total size of 11.6 hectares opposite Healesville Sanctuary and the building was architect designed.
In 2000 it closed down and now after many years of lobbying government, WWWCHAC was successful in obtaining title to Galeena Beek.
WWWCHAC is proposing to redevelop the Galeena Beek cultural centre to become both a centre for Wurundjeri people, and a popular attraction for existing visitors to the region as well as a driver for new visitation.
The principal purposes are to provide a place where Wurundjeri feel welcome and at home on their country, and to develop a successful experience that celebrates Wurundjeri and is attractive to visitors. It is planned to include:
- A Cultural Experience Centre that brings the heritage and culture of Wurundjeri to life through innovative contemporary storytelling
- Interactive experiences offered by Wurundjeri people that tell a story and enable interaction with community
- Outdoor spaces that enable Wurundjeri spending time on their country and connecting with their people
- A range of outdoor activities and programs for groups
- Accommodation that enables immersion in country and supporting experiences delivered on site and at Healesville Sanctuary.
The critical factors in ensuring the success of the experience of Galeena Beek is heroic enough to be a compelling attraction that visitors want to come to are:
- Ensuring highly interactive exciting exhibits
- Places people can connect with the country, the people and their stories
- Changing exhibits that mean people return
- Engaging ways to tell stories of people.
The story themes and content would be developed in close consultation with Wurundjeri.