Shoalhaven Campus has been gifted a painting at an event with Coomaditchie Aboriginal community, students and staff.

The ‘Black Cockatoo’ artwork was a result of the Phase 1 UOW Doctor of Medicine (MD) Indigenous community placements, which form part of student’s Phase 1 compulsory medical curriculum. The Indigenous Health immersion program for Phase 1 students has been designed in consultation with local Aboriginal communities in the Illawarra and Shoalhaven and Indigenous Health is integrated across all four Phases of the UOW Doctor of Medicine (MD) curriculum.

The Art for Healing program where students developed the Black Cockatoo painting is held on country at the Coomaditchie Aboriginal community at Warrawong. This is a women’s business program and Coomaditchie have partnered with the School of Medicine, Indigenous Health Unit for the past three years.

Immersion programs are a recognised strategy under the CDAMS Indigenous Health Curriculum Framework for Indigenous health education.

This Black Cockatoo painting has great significance for the Shoalhaven/Nowra area, as ‘Nowra’ is the Aboriginal word for yellow-tailed black cockatoo, recorded as ‘nou-woo-ro’ in 1861. Our students chose this as the focal point of the painting and included reflections of their own journeys as they migrated from across Australia to study medicine at the Shoalhaven campus of UOW. Each segment highlights where those journeys originated – Flame Trees of the Atherton Tablelands QLD; dingo tracks on Fraser Island QLD; the goanna totem of the Wiradjuri people in Bathurst NSW; the sun setting over the Southern Ocean in Albany WA; and the Three Sisters of the Blue Mountains NSW.

This painting will be on display in the Campus Services Building on Shoalhaven Campus.