The southern Mallee community of Rainbow has started transforming a former primary school site into an oasis of plants, music, creativity, fitness and fun.
As part of a State Government Small Town Transformation Project, the community will spend the next 18 months refurbishing the historic school’s vacant buildings and developing an Oasis HUB in the centre of town.
This site will also be the location of a new skate park.
People have spent many hours at a working bee at the site to remove weeds, prune trees and prepare two portable classrooms for the town’s newly relocated community gymnasium. Oasis committee chairman Peter Gosling said volunteer work represented a great start to the project and showed how supportive the community was in bringing its primary school back to life.
“The school dates back to the early 1900s. It closed about five years ago, so it’s in pretty good shape,” he said.
“It will be really exciting to make use of these buildings again.
“We plan to get the gym open soon and then work on a garden project during the next few months.
“There will also be art projects this year and some major music workshops are planned for 2018”.
Mr Gosling said community members had met landscape architect En:locus earlier this year to brainstorm ideas for a large, low-water garden in the school grounds.
“Nearly 40 people including students from Rainbow P12 braved heatwave conditions to contribute ideas to the large garden, which will include several donated mature palm trees,” Mr Gosling said.
“I am really looking forward to seeing how this Small Town Transformation Project can really change our Mallee town over the next couple of years.”
A second community working bee is planned at the school site from 10am to 4pm on Sunday. People seeking more information can call Adelle Rohrsheim on 0431 820 493.