e-news July 2009

Urban Camp is celebrating its 25th year

May 21, 2009

The Urban Camp Melbourne Co-operative has an exciting year ahead as it turns 25 years old in 2009. We will have a number of events at the Camp in 2009, and would like to invite groups to contribute to our ‘2009 Art Wall'. After visiting Urban Camp, groups are encouraged to convey their impressions in an eclectic art form that may include paintings, drawings, comments, photos, collages (on A1 paper). The ‘Art Wall' will form an integral part of the celebrations in March 2009. We have no doubt that there will be a fantastic interpretation of Melbourne from a range of perspectives. If your group would like to contribute some works, just post them on to the Urban Camp.

Schools at the Camp

During 2008, many schools from throughout Victoria stayed at the Urban Camp. These included schools from Mildura, Nhill and Horsham. Schools on Camp always have a range of exciting activities in their program. The activities undertaken by Balmoral Consolidated School included a visit to the Zoo, Eureka Tower, the MCG and National Sports Museum, Galactic Circus and the Victoria Market. Students also got the chance to participate in a yabby workshop which was run by the Melbourne Aquarium.


What's on in Melbourne

State Library of Victoria

The Library's Education Programs Unit offers a range of stimulating programs based on the VELS and VCE curricula. Hands-on workshops enable students to explore the themes and content of specific exhibitions, developing their own personal responses and extending their skills. Exhibition tours provide an engaging, informative way for students to learn more about the artefacts on display and their place in history.


The Written World

Based on the Library's permanent exhibition, contains programs designed to enhance students' knowledge and appreciation of books and writing.

Victoria – People and Places

In a range of programs focusing on the Library's permanent exhibition, students will come face-to-face with Victoria's history and how Melbourne and the state have evolved.

Ph: 8664 7555

Shrine of Remembrance

The programs are based on the Victorian Essential Learning Standards (VELS).  A visit to the Shrine is an inspiring learning experience and students will not only gain valuable insights into Australian history and changing identity, but will be encouraged to reflect on the personal qualities exemplified by the Spirit of ANZAC.

All of the programs are free of charge. Some schools may qualify for a travel subsidy.

Ph: 9661 8100


National Sports Museum

The National Sports Museum celebrates the place of sport in Australian life and promotes national identity and pride. It provides a unique opportunity to showcase what Australian sportsmen and women have achieved at the elite level, with an exhibition of sporting artefacts from across all Australian sports within a single location.

The National Sports Museum educational resource is not just for sports fans. The activities focus on the richness sport has brought to our history, culture, identity and lifestyle. They emphasise interpersonal and disciplinary learning, and enable students to understand and appreciate the value and significance of sport in our society.

Ph: 9657 8879

Melbourne Aquarium


There is a new workshop at Urban Camp that is run by Melbourne Aquarium staff. It will give students an understanding of how to set up and maintain an artificial environment with a live animal. The workshop would consist of going through the requirements needed to maintain a healthy environment for a yabby. In addition the school will be given all the materials needed to set up their very own ‘Yabby' tank back at school.

Ph: 9620 0999


Art Journey


There are some spectacular artworks that make Docklands an urban art destination, reflecting Melbournians' love of culture and the arts. Follow the Art Journey, a self-guided urban art tour, to view over 29 public artworks across the precincts that are bringing colour and life to Docklands 24 hours a day. Along the way, make use of the different open spaces that complement the artworks, offering barbeque areas, creative playgrounds and recreation areas.

Download a brochure at www.vicurban.com
Ph:8317 3400


Groups at Urban Camp

Challenge Urban Camp

Challenge is a not for profit organisation that supports children living with cancer and their families, from the time of diagnosis, through the treatment period and beyond. Just one of the many ways we do this is by running camps for the kids and their siblings. This year we were delighted to run our urban camp at the aptly named Urban Camp. One of the kids even remarked how kind it was of them to name their camp just for us!

With 54 kids aged 8-12 and a group of brave leaders we headed out to see the best of what Melbourne has to offer. We enjoyed a jam-packed week including activities such as the Royal Melbourne Show; kite flying in Royal Park; circus skills and lacrosse workshops; a day trip to Philip Island to get lost in a maze and watch the penguins struggle in for the night; an MCG tour; a loud afternoon of bowling and galactic circus; a very special stay overnight at the Melbourne Museum; a day out with the animals at Werribee Zoo and finally onto the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre to brave the wave pool and slides.

Melbourne certainly is a fantastic place to spend time with friends and all of our kids managed to gain just that on camp. Thanks to all the wonderful staff at Urban Camp who provided us with a safe haven at their fantastic camp to come home to everyday. What an oasis in the middle of the city.

The Challenge Team


From the Camp Director


We have a new Urban Camp image and logo to visually represent a link with country and city.


Over the last 12 months we have had the shower blocks totally refurbished, re-upholstered the ‘ottoman' seats and carried out maintenance works on the dining chairs and the bunks (haven't quite got all the squeaks out)!

All group leaders are reminded that our TV/DVD setup in Meeting Rooms 1 & 2 can accommodate digital camera connections for photo displays when you get back to Camp at day's end. Just bring your cord and plug in.


Our caring and enthusiastic staff continue to make your Melbourne visit a fun and a well organised experience. Membership usage of our facility is at an all time high, indicating the value teachers and group leaders place on a visit to our capital city.


Our board members are elected from the membership and do this on a completely voluntary basis. It is a most rewarding experience to be part of a group who oversee such a worthwhile operation. Not only do members get to work with interesting people but generally learn much from sharing ideas with like-minded folk.

Board meetings are held approximately 8 times a year (combination of onsite and tele-conference) as well as a weekend retreat held in a different part of Victoria each year.


From the Executive Officer


I'm often asked by Camp visitor's where we get our funding. The fact is we are self funding and don't rely on any government or commercial sources to operate.

The Urban Camp has proven to be a very successful co-operative membership model whereby we keep charges to a minimum for all members making sure we cover staff wages, general operating expenses, long term maintenance with any declared surplus put back into keeping the facility in top shape for your next visit.

This year celebrates the 25th anniversary of Urban Camp Melbourne Co-operative which is a fantastic achievement. Consider the numbers of country/rural people who have stayed here and experienced our capital city travelling with school, team and community mates.

The table snapshot gives you some idea of the strength of our supporting membership group for whom we couldn't survive without.


Primary Schools                           525

Secondary Schools                        68

Disability                                       51

Community & Youth                    206

Sporting                                        88

Total Membership                        938

See you at Camp next time.

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