THE KAADADJAN CENTRE

St Stephen’s School owns 100 acres at Dwellingup adjacent to Lane Poole Reserve. The property has extensive native forest, more than 800m of Murray River frontage and neighbours the Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi Trail. Rich historic and Indigenous links make it a place of reflection and learning.

The name 'Kaadadjan Centre', which translates to Knowledge Centre, was gifted to the School by a local Noongar Elder. It is a name we are honoured to use, one which beautifully suits our educational purpose where 'knowledge' is at the 'centre' of all that we do.

Our community use the property for various learning opportunities including orienteering, camping skills and kayaking. It also provides a place of contemplation, somewhere to reflect and to connect with nature for our Rite Journey and Duke of Edinburgh cohorts. Our Humanities and Social Sciences use The Kaadadjan Centre to demonstrate first-hand connections with history, sustainability and the environment.

It has also been host to wonderful School events including our Community Campout where 300 of our community came together and camped overnight to celebrate the School’s 35th year.

The Kaadadjan Centre has, and continues to serve, St Stephen’s School well. With growing evidence showing the impact being outdoors and connecting with nature can have on one’s health, we are excited to share the property that we are all so proud of, with the wider community.

Time away from technology, our devices and the city lights can enhance positivity while outdoor experience with others also builds a sense of community and connection and can improve teamwork and leadership. These are skills we pass on to our students yet they can benefit people from all walks of life.

Good knowledge, good spirits, good place

By Nerolie Bynder, 2019

The art is about a place of good knowledge and on country. It is a community place for young people. It is about building up young people’s spirit in a good place on country.

The painting shows the river going up alongside the good place. The river is wavy and covered by scales to represent the Waugal, as the Waugal is the creator of things and all the waterways and waterholes.

The three spirits live in the river representing the inner spirits of the people - the ancestors of the past, the people of the present and the people of the future who continue to learn and share on country.

The pink circle is to represent this place in the heart of Noongar country. The white dotted travel lines coming from the centre are Noongar people moving around through the six Noongar seasons.

Read more about the story behind the piece here.

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