Wallara has evolved to become an innovative, sector leading support service for adults with different abilities.
One of the largest barriers to achieving success for our clients is public attitudes, understanding and lack of awareness and opportunity. The more we can influence those attitudes, raise awareness and understanding the more opportunities our clients will have in their lives and the better will be their outcomes.
In terms of understanding disability, the community can generally be divided into thirds:
Wallara’s goal is to reach and impact this middle third by helping to build understanding, awareness and support of disability. If we succeed with this goal we will have materially changed society and created more opportunities for our clients to take their place in the community.
Our commitment to reach out and engage with the broader community to drive social change is the philosophy behind:
WallaraTV, our award-winning inhouse media team that has created over 150 videos and produced multiple 30-minute TV Specials that have been broadcast on C31 in Melbourne and on Foxtel nationally.
Sages Cottage Farm, our 38-acre working farm in Baxter that provides unconventional opportunities for our clients such as beekeeping, aquaponics, ecology, horticulture and farm maintenance. And is a unique opportunity to bring the community to us.
As well as our unique partnerships with:
- Monash University ‘Keep On Learning’
- Ventura Bus Lines
- Mainstream Schools
- Frankston RSL
- St Kilda Football Club
Wallara promotes diversity and equity for all.
A timeline of Wallara’s history
From small beginnings
Mayor of Dandenong Cr M. G. (Maurie) Jarvis held a meeting at his home, after being approached by parents seeking help for their children with a disability, to organise the Dandenong and District Mentally Retarded Children’s Association.
The Wallara school opened at the Dandenong Scout Hall
The first Ladies Auxillary meeting of the Association was held with 60 ladies in attendance.
The Wallara School moved to Hutton St, Dandenong after outgrowing the scout hall Land was purchased in Potter St, Dandenong to build a junior school and workshop
Alice Churchill and Beryl Dodd formed ‘The Mother’s club’, providing much needed support for mothers of children with disability
‘Nenagh Lodge’ in Close Avenue was purchased by Wallara and renamed Cussen House in recognition of Jean Cussen and her work with people with disability. Cussen House offered lifetime accommodation for up to 12 people.
Additional land on the northern side of Potter St was purchased for further expansion
The Ladies Auxillary opened an Op Shop in Thomas St, Dandenong
A day centre and workshop were built on the land purchased in Potter St to accommodate the growing Association
The Mother’s Club expanded to become the Parents & Friends Association
An innovative partnership with Wintringham was formed in 2008 to build a state-of-the-art integrated facility for older disadvantaged people and people with disability to reside in supported living.
Sages Cottage Farm was purchased, Wallara’s flagship 38-acre working farm at the gateway to the Mornington Peninsula
Wallara Industries (formerly new Dandenong Industries) was renamed to Wallara Logistics
Wallara moved into its new head office at 160 Bridge Rd, Keysborough, a prime frontage building adjacent to Peninsula Link.