ARTISTS AT WORK: Zibby Roberts, of Lismore, and Jordan McKenzie, of Moree, do their bit on the mural.
ARTISTS AT WORK: Zibby Roberts, of Lismore, and Jordan McKenzie, of Moree, do their bit on the mural. Doug Eaton

Rainbow serpent welcomes clinic

GOONELLABAH'S soon-to-be-opened GP Super Clinic has been given a facelift by 12 dedicated indigenous students who painted a mural to celebrate the launch of the Goonellabah Working Together Project.

Indigenous students from Southern Cross University's Distance Education Program Ngulingah yesterday got together with NORTEC Youth Services, Meridian Community Services and local artists from the Back Alley Gallery Collective to paint a mural of the rainbow serpent.

The Goonellabah Working Together project is an initiative of the Meridian Community Services, which aims to create a social hub where community services, such as Centrelink, will be available at the Northern Rivers Church of Christ Hall, across from the GP Super Clinic site.

The artistic director for the mural, Gitabul artist Luke Close, said the rainbow serpent theme was reflective of the landscape of the Northern Rivers.

"The serpent is depicted moving through the many river systems and ranges in the area," Mr Close said.

NORTEC Youth Connections case worker Dusty McOnie said he was proud to see the "mural" project finally come to fruition after months of planning.

"Seeing young people supported to achieve something like this, which also re-engages them with their education at Ngulingah, is really amazing," he said.

Meridian Community Services general manager Jonny Iuso said it was essential to involve young people in the launch of the Working Together Project so they can "feel valued within their community".

She said it also gave the young people an opportunity to demonstrate their connection with their culture by providing the local community with the artwork.

"Bringing this group of kids together in the community is so important as it celebrates the diverse group of people we have in this area," Ms Iuso said.

The Lismore City Council provided the materials for students to complete the mural and the project was funded by the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations.

The mural can be viewed from the Pleasant St entrance to the Goonellabah GP Super Clinic site .



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