Annual Events Program

Darebin’s biannual, multi-arts festival FUSE transforms Darebin into a dynamic hub of creativity this Spring.

FUSE features an amazing line up of artists, artworks and events in the Spring program from September to November 2020.

FUSE is Darebin’s brand-new multi-arts festival, held in Autumn and Spring each year, designed to accommodate a range of different access points for audience and practitioners.

The festival includes nearly 50 events to be enjoyed while observing COVID-19 restrictions currently in place. Between September 1 and November 29, there will be a curated festival, commissioned work, and supported community engagement.

Check the FUSE website for the full festival program.

National Aboriginal and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week 2020 has been postponed until November, however there are still events being planed for the original July dates. NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to come together to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait people.

The theme for 2020 “Always was, always will be” acknowledges the nation’s story at the dawn of time and didn’t begin with documented European contact.  This theme is learning about the 65,000 year history of this Country and the first footprints on this continent belonging to the First Nations peoples, maintaining ongoing spiritual and cultural connections to the land and sea.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were the first Australian diplomats, astronomers, artists and farmers. 

NAIDOC 2020 invites all Australians to embrace and acknowledge the true history of this country – a history which dates back thousands of generations.

What's you can do to celebrate NAIDOC Week in Darebin in July:

  • You can also listen to DAAC Statement on Black Lives Matter read out at the start of the June 9 Council Meeting.

Other events being held in July:

  • Aboriginal Astronomy with Astro Kirsten
    When: Sat 11 July 2020 7:30pm

    Learn from Kirsten Banks, proud Wiradjuri woman, astrophysicist and science communicator. Understand how the perspective of the night sky to Aboriginal Australians is unique compared to the Western view of the sky. Kirsten will share some stories and learn the underlying science behind these stories.
  • NAIDOC Children's Day
    When: Sun 12 July 2020 11:00am

    We're celebrating NAIDOC Week with a special online VACCA Children's Day event — broadcasting live from our Facebook and Instagram pages! The event will begin with a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony by Wurundjeri Elder Aunty Di Kerr, followed by performances from Uncle Kutcha Edwards, Casey Donovan and many more still to be announced!
  • Wayapa Wuurrk - Introduction
    When: Mon 6 July 2020 10:00am
    Come and hear from Gunditjmara/Muthi Muthi woman Jacara Egan, as she shares wellness through Wayapa Wuurrk: An Earth Mindfulness Practice. Wayapa Wuurrk translates to “Connect to the Earth” in the languages of the Gunditjmara and Gunai people.
  • Wayapa Wuurrk - Deeper connections
    When: Thu 9 July 2020 10:00am
    This session will build on the introduction work shop and take a deeper dive into the world of Wayapa.
  • Goal Setting & Vision Planning with Yolanda
    When: Fri 24 July 2020 11:00am
    Learning about goalsetting and how it can be a game changer for you. Dig deep into your Why, Awaken your Purpose and creating inspiring goals and aligned action. Create your vision for the next 12 months. Clear the additional blocks and challenges we face as First Nations women.
  • Painting Native Flowers
    When: Tue 28 July 2020 1:00pm
    You don’t have to be good at art to take this creative class! Paint Your Town is a fun, social art class for all. Beginners, all ages and abilities are welcomed to come explore painting on canvas.
  • inDigiMOB Words to Music Competition
    Entries close Sunday 12 July 2020.
    The Alice Springs based inDigiMOB are holding a unique, 'Words to Music' competition for mob all around the Country. Download one of four backing tracks and add your own lyrics. Competition details, terms & conditions and entry form can be found on the link above.
  • Calling Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Artists
    Submissions due 30 August 2020.
    The Department of Justice and Community Safety's Aboriginal Employment Team invites Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to submit an original piece of artwork to feature in the 2021 Aboriginal Pathways to Justice Calendar. The selected artist will receive $3,000 for the purchase and exclusive license of the artwork.
  • Online Treaty Yarning Circle
    When: Wed 1 July 2020 4:00pm
    As a follow up from the First Peoples' Assembly of Victoria's Chamber Meeting live stream, the young members of the Assembly will host an online yarning circle. This yarning circle will be an opportunity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people aged 14-28 years old to hear updates from the young members and ask questions.

This year, Refugee Week falls on Sunday June 14 to Saturday June 20. The theme for 2020 is “Celebrating the Year of Welcome”.

Refugee Week is an annual event that provides a platform where positive images of refugees can be promoted in order to create a culture of welcome throughout the country.  The aim of the celebration is to create better understanding between different communities and to encourage successful integration enabling refugees to live in safety and with respect for their stories and their incredible contribution to Australia.

 The week also includes The United Nations World Refugee Day on 20th June.

Refugee Week is a unique opportunity for us all to experience and celebrate the rich diversity of refugee communities through theatre, music, dance, film and other events which take place all over Australia and provide an important opportunity for asylum seekers and refugees to be seen, listened to and valued.

For more information about the week, please visit


Bukjeh Workshops 

Darebin Arts is partnering with artist, activist and facilitator, Aseel Tayah and the team at community art project Bukjeh present a program of workshops, events and conversations celebrating Refugee Week. This program is supported as part of Darebin Council’s COVID-19 Recovery package providing support and relief to community and local businesses.

Bukjeh connects people of all ages and backgrounds through storytelling, dance and respectful conversations. Bukjeh is usually presented inside a repurposed disaster relief tent. However, due to COVID-19, Bukjeh will deliver this engaging program online.

“Connection and belonging are important for all of us even though we must practice physical distancing,” says Aseel Tayah.

Key Dates: The program commences on Monday 15 June with new programs every weekday until 23 June.
Cost: All workshops and events are free to attend.
Location: Workshops will be held via Zoom and are accessible via the Bukjeh website.

No prior knowledge is required to participate in the program of events.

More information and booking info:

Messages of Support – Footpath decals in Darebin

Council is not able to hold in-person community activities to celebrate Refugee Week 2020 because of COVID-19 restrictions. However, it is still important to adapt how we acknowledge and celebrate Refugee Week.


In East Preston and East Reservoir, local community groups and schools have generously contributed their messages and drawings in support for refugees and asylum seekers.

The messages reflect the hope and inspirations, as well as a warm welcome from the community, and have been turned into neighbourhood footpath decals for everyone to enjoy.


The contributions are from Your Community Health, East Preston Islamic College and East Reservoir Neighbours for Change.

See if you can spot the decals along

  • Strathmerton Street and Dunne Street in Reservoir
  • Tyler Street, Greenbelt Avenue, Crevelli Street and Newton Street in Preston



Help us create an Easter egg hunt across Darebin!

Print out the Easter egg template (click here), colour it in and stick it in your front window for everyone to enjoy and to help us create a Darebin-wide Easter egg hunt.

When you're out on your daily walk for exercise, count how many you can see in your neighbouring streets.

Happy Easter egg hunting!


We celebrate International Women’s Day with events and activities across Darebin throughout March.

international womens day

International Women's Day is a day when individuals, organisations and governments around the world celebrate the social, cultural and political achievements of women. It's also as a day to raise awareness and take action against gender-based discrimination and violence. Darebin City Council celebrates International Women’s Day with special events and activities which take place throughout the municipality during the month of March. 

The Molly Hadfield Social Justice Oration
This is a free public community event held annually in celebration of International Women’s Day The event is a tribute to well-known Darebin resident Molly Hadfield OAM who worked tirelessly to advance women’s and seniors rights throughout her life. The oration will be delivered by Roj Amedi, writer, strategist and human rights campaigner. The evening will also include MC, Hella Ibrahim, and performances by Mia Jeffers and Dance & Roll.
WHEN: Thursday 5 March, 6.30pm – 8pm (doors open at 6pm)
WHERE: Darebin Arts Centre
COST: Free
Book online at Eventbrite.

Women of the Metropolitan Fire and Emergency Services Board (MFB), an Exhibition
This exhibition honours the strength, bravery and professionalism shown by operational women in the MFB as firefighters and communications officers.
WHEN: 4 March to 1 April
WHERE: Preston Library
COST: Free

Alice Anderson’s all-girl garage with Loretta Smith
Alice Anderson was a motoring pioneer and adventurer who built her own garage in Kew, Melbourne and established Australia’s first motor service run entirely by women.  She died under mysterious circumstances in 1926 at the age of twenty-nine. Author Loretta Smith will tell Alice’s story using the extensive research she conducted while writing her book A Spanner in the Works: The extraordinary story of Alice Anderson and Australia’s first all-girl garage. 
WHEN: Wednesday 11 March, 7pm – 8pm
WHERE: Preston Library
COST: Free
Book online at Eventbrite or call 1300 655 355.

Women on Wheels
Run by a woman instructor and designed especially for women wanting to feel more confident about riding.
WHEN: Saturday 21 March, 1pm – 5pm
WHERE: Darebin Arts Centre
COST: $15 - $25
Book online at Eventbrite.

This Girl Can @ Darebin
This Girl Can Week is dedicated to encouraging more women to give physical activity a shot, or return to activity after a break. You’ll see some great offers right around Darebin, all designed to inspire women to get active.
WHEN: 23 -29 March
Stay tuned for more information.

Contact Council's Gender Equity Officer - or call 8470 8498


Darebin’s Backyard Harvest Festival is back, running over three weekends from 14 – 29 March as part of Darebin FUSE Festival for the first time.

Darebin City Council is continually following the up-to-date advice of the leading authorities on the Coronavirus, in relation to the safety of our community and staff. We will continually provide updates of any changes through the FUSE festival website.

There are 20 planned backyard garden tours and workshops to get you inspired to grow your own fresh healthy food. Topics including permaculture, aquaponics, backyard quails and chicken keeping, organic pest and disease management, propagating, composting and fruit tree maintenance. There are also two free open gardens where you can explore the abundance of a local community garden and school kitchen garden.

Tours and workshops run from between 60-120 minutes and cost $12 full / $6 concession. Take advantage of our $8 / $4 discount offer when you buy tickets to three or more events in the one transaction. Kids under 16 can attend for free.

To see the program and buy tickets, visit

Further Information
Environment Support
Ph: 8470 8556


Video: Backyard Harvest Festival 2017

This is an annual event that is celebrated during the first week of February (1-7 February 2020).

It was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2010. They recognised that mutual understanding and interreligious dialogue constitute important dimensions of a culture of peace and established World Interfaith Harmony Week to promote harmony between all people regardless of their faith.

Recognising the imperative need for dialogue among different faiths and religions to enhance mutual understanding, harmony and cooperation among people, the General Assembly encourages all States to spread the message of interfaith harmony and goodwill in the world’s churches, mosques, synagogues, temples and other places of worship during that week, on a voluntary basis and according to their own religious traditions or convictions.

In consideration of this, the City of Darebin would like to invite you to visit the Darebin Peace Poles, located outside the front of the Darebin Intercultural Centre (59A Roseberry Avenue, Preston VIC 3072), during this week, to reflect upon the importance of understanding, harmony and cooperation amongst all people.

For more information about the week, please visit:

Celebrated on 17 May each year, IDAHOBIT recognises the discrimination and human rights abuses experienced by LGBTIQ people around the world.

IDAHOBIT also affirms the strength, resilience and contributions of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning (LGBTIQ) people and their families, allies and supporters. In Darebin, we are proud of our diverse community. As the closest level of government to the community, we believe that we have an important role in challenging homophobia, biphobia and transphobia and promoting social inclusion and human rights for all, regardless of sexuality, sex characteristics or gender identity.

We recognise that discrimination can have serious negative consequences on the social and emotional well being of our residents. We are committed to strengthening community cohesion and connectedness by celebrating diversity and promoting respect for all. 



Messages of Support on IDAHOBIT

National Sorry Day is an annual ceremonial event that is held in Australia on 26 May and coincides with the launch of the 1997 ‘Bringing them Home’ report. Reconciliation Week 27 May – 3 June commences on the day after Sorry Day.

National Sorry Day is an Australia-wide observance held on May 26 each year. This day gives people the chance to come together and share the steps towards healing for the Stolen Generations, their families and communities. Stolen generations refer to Indigenous Australians who were forcibly removed from their families and communities.

National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is celebrated across Australia each year between 27 May and 3 June and commemorates two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey: the anniversaries of the successful 1967 referendum and the High Court Mabo decision. The week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements and to explore how each of us can join the national reconciliation effort.

We offer a variety of sessions for parents year-round to learn new techniques to help raise your child.

Update (27 August 2020) :  Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic the parenting programs had been cancelled. However we have just started reintroducing the Sleep and Settling sessions as Sleep and Settling online clinics. The sessions will be presented via MS Teams. Go to "book now" to view the current sessions at offer.

We are still working on the gradual re-introduction of Babies and Food Sessions for the reminder of the year.  Further updates on program scheduling will be provided on this web page.

You can contact the Early Years Leader on 0413 807 858 or to be linked with other parenting services, programs and resources in Darebin.

Further resources for parents with young children listed below;

Information for Parents re COVID-19 

Playgroup Victoria – Play Ideas 
Playgroup Victoria have published play at home ideas for families in isolation:


For complete details about our forthcoming programs see the January - June 2020 Parenting Seminars Calendar.

Bookings are essential as places are strictly limited, so book now.

Please note, bookings open approximately 5-6 weeks before the event.

Video: Attend a free event, find something to do over the school holidays, or visit public art in your neighbourhood.