MDAS Story

Employed by community to work for community

Mallee District Aboriginal Services (MDAS) is northwest Victoria's leading service provider for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

We are a proud Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (ACCHO) with a long history of delivering sustainable, grassroots services and providing the local community with a vehicle for self-determination.

Our staff delivers support services to communities based across the local government areas of Mildura Rural City Council, Swan Hill Rural City Council and Gannawarra Shire.

More than half of our staff is of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander background, and we're committed to providing a resilient workforce with high Aboriginal representation and demonstrated cultural competency for non-Aboriginal employees.

Our Vision:

Self-determined, healthy, robust and culturally strong Aboriginal communities across the Mallee region.

Our Purpose:

Healing, supporting, serving and protecting our communities.

Healthy, resilient and capable Aboriginal people and families who can be their very best selves and exercise true self-determination.

Caring for, strengthening, empowering, motivating and guiding our Mob.

Our Values:

MIND: Integrity, Accountability, Confidentiality

SPIRIT: Respect, Elders, Culture

BODY: Compassion, Empathy, Nurturing


Governs our people for all our existence and informs our work with communities, families, and individuals.


Within our cultural lands we will have a place to heal and draw strength. As our Ancestors before us did, we need to ensure we continue to take care of our lands.


Our history is an oral tradition, we have passed down generation to generation by song-lines, language, customs and ceremonies through storytelling.


Is the underpinning value of our people, we show respect for country, our Elders, our cultural practices and others’ cultural practices, our animals and our Dreaming.

ELDERS: Are our wisdom holders, our story tellers, our links to our culture and our families, our Elders provide the cultural knowledge and spiritual guidance that we all need.

Our Logo:

Designed by local artist Sharon Kirby, our logo represents the Murray River communities we support, from Mildura through to Kerang; we place the person at the centre of everything we do.


Mallee History

The Mallee has an ancient history, dating back more than 40,000 years.

The traditional custodians of the Mallee country are the Latje Latje, Wergaia, Barkindji, Neri Neri, Ngtait, Wadi Wadi, Wemba Wemba, Barababaraba and Mutti Mutti peoples.

Northern Victoria and far west, southern New South Wales are recognised internationally for the number of significant human fossils and artifacts located on our lands, which are considered to be among Australia's richest and most important cultural heritage areas.

The understanding of Australia's Aboriginal history was revolutionised in the 1960s with the discovery of ancient human remains at Lake Mungo, in the Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area of far west New South Wales.

Aboriginal history in northern Victoria and southern New South Wales is particularly significant because the river resources and local quarries allowed relative permanency among the local groups.

The area's original inhabitants developed specialised tools, traditions, and customs specific to the area.

We are proud of our cultural heritage and is committed to breaking down barriers, building an understanding of local heritage and traditions and working together with all communities to achieve reconciliation.