Partnerships Strengthened between RDHS, MVAC and Robinvale College

Monday 12th November 2018 RDHS officially revealed their Aboriginal Artwork Project representing the partnerships and connection of RDHS, MVAC and Robinvale College.


Elvia Wighton commence the proceedings with Welcome to Country and then Freule Jones – Board Director of RDHS welcomed all Guests and Community members to this special event.

CEO Mara Richards then spoke of the project from its inception many years ago to where it is now.  RDHS is very happy to add this project to the many that have been supported in recognition of our very important partnerships within our area. The Board Directors both past and present have a keen desire to work together with our partners to ensure that we all realise the best outcomes for all of our communities.

Daryl Singh addressed the audience with the sounds digeridoo and traditional song in language and dance were performed by Brendan and Jade Kennedy.

Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Federal Member for Mallee The Hon Andrew Broad MP, then commenced with the official reveal of the artwork.

As the health service providers for this area we have a key role in future proofing the health of generations to come and we have a dream to ensure that the “best start is the right one” and therefore our partnership with the pre and early years of our children is a key health consideration, hence the partnership with the Robinvale College. However we must also care for our current generations and our relationship with MVAC is also critical to help care for the community as a whole and in particular our Aboriginal members of the community.

Meaning of the Health Panel
At the base/tail end of the snake we see three children represented by three dot or circles. The number three also represent the three organisations involved in the development of this project.

The three children start their journey along the body of the snake. As they grow older and mature their foot prints become larger. This represents ‘growth’

Along their journey they encounter and consume “bush tucker”, healthy foods grown and collected from the land.

Healthy eating and footprints left behind after activity, whether it be walking, running, dancing or playing represent the active, healthy lifestyle that RDHS encourages as a health service.

Enforcing the theme of a journey of growth we can see journey lines with campsites along the body of the snake. These campsites or rest stops represent significant moments in a person’s life. It could be starting school, the birth of a child, an accident or illness, returning to work or transitioning into residential aged care. For every significant ‘campsite’ RDHS endeavours to help and support community members to take the next step in their journey.

At the head of the snake we have an elder. The child who started this journey has grown up to become a wise and respected part of the community bringing the journey full circle. This elder or elders will guide the next generation through their journey.

This leads us to the Murray River. The uniting theme across all three organisations, the river represents life. It brings with it water and food, the river brings life to the landscape.

On the other side of the river, the other side of life, we have the afterlife, represented by three stars. The spirits of those who have passed on continues to live among the stars or heavens. A theme that transcends many cultures and beliefs.

This artwork tells the story of life through health, and of Robinvale District Health Services being by your side throughout that journey. The dominant feature of this piece is the snake wrapped around a spear. This is reminiscent of the Rod of Asclepius which commonly identified as a symbol of health, health care or medicine.

RDHS is very excited by the future and our dream is to create not only the best health services available in the region but to show others in Victoria, Australia and internationally how it is done!

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