Shepparton’s Bangerang Cultural Centre a winner

By Ashlea Witoslawski

Bangerang Cultural Centre has been recognised for its cultural significance at the Keep Victoria Beautiful Sustainable City Awards.

The centre took out the Cultural Heritage Award, acknowledging its commitment to preserve, celebrate and value indigenous cultural heritage.

The win came as a big surprise for Bangerang Cultural Centre chairperson Miranda Edwards, who found out about the awards when approached by community member Audrey Hurst.

Ms Hurst had recently moved to the Goulburn Valley from Dimboola, where she first showed a commitment to promoting sustainable communities, earning the Keep Victoria Beautiful Dame Phyllis Frost Award.

Ms Hurst approached the centre, as she wanted to showcase her new hometown’s rich, historical culture.

Mrs Edwards said she was grateful for Ms Hurst’s interest in the centre.

‘‘We were surprised to even be a finalist and very shocked to win,’’ she said.

‘‘It showcases what we do here and what we hope to do in the future.’’

Mrs Edwards said the award came at a great time for the organisation, asit worked hard to reopen the centre.

The Bangerang Cultural Centre ceased operation in December last year due to an inability to generate or source adequate funding.

‘‘The centre is for the community and to keep up the work of Uncle Sandy Atkinson,’’ Mrs Edwards said.

‘‘The award comes at a rewarding time and has lifted our spirits for the future of the centre.’’.

Mrs Edwards said the committee was in the process of applying for a number of grants with the hope of upgrading the building and opening the doors in a full-time capacity by the end of the year.

‘‘We’re currently working on our business plan, talking to the council and reopening for schools,’’ she said.

‘‘We’ll definitely be adding the award to our applications.’’