2018 Newsletter posted on 14th August

 Newsletter Issue 11  | November 2017 

President’s Report 

Welcome to our 2018 Newsletter. 

1. Through the viewfinder


If you haven’t been on a trail of the silo art—this is one of a World War 1 nurse at Devenish in North East Victoria.
The Devenish Silo Artwork is a visual tribute to the 50 young men and women from the community who enlisted in military service in the First World War, focusing on the role of nurses in service and how that role has evolved over the time. The artist has captured the past and further and depicts the important role our medical personnel play in the war front.

The artist, Cam Scale started his career as an artist in early 2000 and is a now well-renown fine artist and mural painter in Australia. (Silo Art NE Victoria—Tungamah-Devenish Goorambat

Bendigo Heritage Representative Group Meeting Report The bimonthly meetings are always very well represented by approximately 15 organizations across a wide area of  heritage interest. 

The meetings are currently chaired by  

The role of the meeting is to keep all groups informed of heritage related matters and to act as a resource for  each other. The City of Greater Bendigo (CoGB) also provides feedback from their Heritage Advisory Committee  via Ms Emma Buscowsky Cox. Earlier in 2017 the CoGB received funding to commission a review of Heritage Assets. Unfortunately the NDSNGA was not included in the review as the Terms Of Reference included just the five  CoGB Historical Societies – Bendigo, Eaglehawk, Huntly, Heathcote and Elmore. That report has now been finalised and went to CoGB Council in November 2017. We were hoping for positive and practical outcomes for all heritage-related groups, including the NDSNGA’s collection. But unfortunately, that has not been the outcome. Along with other members from the Heritage Representative Group, the NDSNGA Inc approached the Council but we have not since heard the outcome of that approach. 

Due to concerns of inadequate storage of the NDSNGA Inc artefacts at Huntly, you will see on page 7 that we have been able to move our artefacts from an area that was not ideal into a new area at Huntly into a more secure area which we are able to access ad-lib.  

Jenny Pata (NDSNGA Inc Current Representative)

2. Northern District School of Nursing Graduates Association Inc Annual Award 

Annually the NDSNGA Inc has provided an award to the student who displays outstanding academic achievement in the third year of an undergraduate nursing degree at LaTrobe University Bendigo Campus. A member of the  NDSNGA Inc Committee presents the award at the Prize Ceremony in August. This year’s prize recipient was Ms  Billie Harris who also received a copy of our book ‘The First of its Kind: Nurse Education & Training at the North ern District School of Nursing’. The 2018 Award Ceremony was held at the Ulumbarra Theatre Bendigo on Mon day 20th August.  

As mentioned in our previous newsletter, the value of the award was increased to $500 and a copy of our book  was provided to the winner. Our president, Marion Symes, was able to spend a few moments with Billie prior to  the presentation.  

From 2019, the Award will no longer be purely academic. The committee has worked with LaTrobe throughout  the last 12 months to incorporate a practical component in the assessment of the winner of the award.  

 President Marion Symes with recipient winner Billie Harris (Photo courtesy LaTrobe Universi 

Bendigo Chapter of the LaTrobe University Alumni  

The Bendigo Chapter of the LaTrobe University Alumni continues to undertake activities such as the Downtown  Lecture series of which this year Rob Stephenson, Head of LaTrobe Bendigo gave an overview of the future of universities and the November 20th lecture will be from Professor Pauleen Bennett who will speak on the use of dog therapy for PTSD. This will be advertised shortly and everyone is welcome to attend.  

Annually, the Chapter continues to sponsor the opening evening of the Writer’s Festival which is a very popular event during the Festival.  

In September annually, the Chapter also sponsors an Extended Investigation for VCE students from Bendigo Senior  Secondary College for those who undertake a research component of their studies—this enables the students to present their research to an audience who are then able to critique each project. This year students from Cathe rine Macaulay College were invited to take part. Although only 4 students took part this year, they each found it a  valuable exercise prior to their final presentation. 

3. Bendigo Trained Nurses League 90th Birthday Celebrations

In April 2018 the league celebrated its 90th Reunion held at the Kangaroo Flat Sports Club. 

108 members attended and we welcomed new members and quite a number who had not been for some time. A  great day was had by all, reminiscing and sharing news, photographs, life’s experiences and just catching up with friends. 

We celebrated the occasion with a cake-cutting ceremony, and a tour of the new hospital was available for a  limited number of guests. 

The League has a reunion each year, usually in March or April, and welcomes anyone who trained at the Bendigo  “Base” Hospital. For further information contact Wendy Wilkinson 0402916175 or wwilkinson42@gmail.com 

ANZAC Day Wreath Laying 

4. Fay’s Updates 

Fay is our technology guru and keeps the Facebook and Website up to date with photos, reunion information and any other items of interest for those keen to keep up to date. The Facebook page (ndsngafacebook) is still proving popular, especially with the stalwart followers of Facebook. During August Fay posted photos not seen before which were enthusiastically received. Those which related to the various hospitals such as Mildura and  Swan Hill brought favourable comments. Bendigo Hospital and Lister House photos were also included. Our  Facebook is an open one, which means you don’t have to be a ‘friend’ to access it. Anyone can view it and make comments. On some posts, we have had as many as 1,000 plus people look at the site, and a few made comments. Facebook is also an excellent medium to advertise reunions. The most recent, a mini-reunion is on  Wednesday 7th November for lunch at the National Hotel Bendigo. This is open to any nurse who is trained at any hospital. 

The Website: accessed by www.ndsnga.me is not proving so popular. Although there is a lot of information,  there is no facility to make comments or see how many people visit it. Fay asked a question a short time ago  ‘what would you like to see on the website?’ The reply was for more stories about the tutors and events which took place at Lister House. More photos were asked for and Fay is working on this. The 2016 newsletter has been posted on the website. Fay is ably assisted with her work on both Facebook and the Website by her daughter Carolyn, who gets her out of trouble as necessary. 

You may recall that at the last two reunions we have had a PowerPoint presentation running throughout the days. Bendigo Health is to have a large display screen in the foyer of the new hospital. The CEO, Peter Faulkner,  was approached in regard to using our PowerPoint presentations. His response was that “in relation to the slide  show it would be our intention at this stage to display this on the screens in the hospital on such occasions as  International Nurses Day.” A USB has been given to Mr Faulkner for use when required. If anyone believes that any other hospital would like a copy, please contact Fay through either Facebook or the Website.  

NDSNGA Inc Committee 

Any other snippet which might be good for the newsletter—fun thing 2020 Reunion— 18th April 2020 


Someone to write up something about this including: 

  • Membership to ensure you are notified early 
  • Contact details up to date 
  • Accommodation will be as per the Bgo website accomm.  
  • Anything else? 

Reunion Photos 

If you know of a reunion, can you ask those involved for photos and notes etc.

5. School 71 Reunions

” School 71 met for lunch on 5th February  2018 at the Shamrock Hotel which was 50  years from the exact date that we commenced our nursing training with NDSN.”  ” Lots of happy laughter, chatter and reminiscing took place when 15 of school 71 enjoyed a five-day cruise to Tasmania in March 2018. One of our girls even made up a quiz of nursing questions which we had to do every day. I think we probably all failed so good job most of us have retired!” 

(Below, photo taken in the passageway of the Cruise Ship ‘Pacific Eden’)  

Left: Photo taken in the gardens at Port Arthur.  

Thanks to Marg Coad for the snaps and information.  

6. Clean up at Huntly

Over the years, artefacts from the NDSN have been kept in somewhat inappropriate conditions at a storage shed at the Huntly Historical Society. This is due to the fact that Bendigo has limited spaces for the storage of historical artefacts. During August this year, some of our committees donned their oldest glad rags and braced themselves for the dust of that storage facility to cull and clean up. From the old shed in which much of our pieces were stored, we have now moved into a container that is more weatherproof. As a result of this clean up, the  NDSNGA Inc Committee has more items for sale please see below.  

Photographed are Jan Spencely and Jenny Trewartha undertaking the cleanup. Below, Joan O’Shea and Jan Spencely in the new container.  

As a result of the clean up, much old NDSN linen was discovered which the committee has decided to put up for sale at $1/ item. The items are as follows: 

  • Embroidered Serviettes (with Lister House on the hemline) green (55) and pink (17) 
  • Runners—15” (38cms) x 28” (72cms), pink (18), yellow (3) and green (4) 
    •  18” (45cms) x 28” (72cms), pink (8), yellow (3) and green (3) 
    •  26” (60cms) x 39½ (1.05m), yellow 11 and pink (5) 
  • Calico Bag x 1—this is for a round hospital linen trolley 
  • White embossed table cloths—7ft 6ins (2)

7. Where are they now?:

Mrs Meran Pease—last address—41 Roy Street, WANGARATTA 3677 


LaTrobe University Archives at Bundoora holds two collections of records relating to your time as a  student of the Northern District School of Nursing . These are: 

  • 20017/106 Student Record Cards, 1950-1987 
  • 2008/031 Student Assessment & Correspondence Files 

To assist you in your choice of records to access, a detailed description of these collections has been provided to the NDSNGA Inc. 

In applying to have access to your records, please follow the steps below: 

Email: Records&ArchivesServices@latrobe.edu.au and include the following details:

  • Your name (including your maiden name where applicable) 
  • Your date of birth 
  • The collection/s (see above) you would like to access 

Records Services will then scan your records and attach these in a return email Should alternative arrangements be necessary due to, for example, the unavailability of email or a  preference to view the records in person, please contact the Manager, Records Services on   (03) 94792056. Please note that records can be viewed in person at either the Bundoora or Bendigo   campuses 

It is also noted that some files are missing (or currently misplaced) as in the case of School 67. 


Badges: Limited number of NDSN Badges (the 1972 design) $25 each includes postage 

Books: ‘The First of its Kind :Nurse Education and Training at the Northern District School of Nursing’ @ $40 plus  $15 p&p – limited number left. We will take names (and money) for a new print round if necessary.  Commemorative Mugs from the 2000 reunion @ $6– each plus p&p.  

Contact: Asst Secretary Jenny Pata, PO Box 509 Bendigo 3552, 0411 799 202 or email: kayjay@bendigodomain.com.au