Rumbalara Football Netball Club

Rumba Shop! is our three-year collaboration with Rumbalara Football Netball Club, an Aboriginal-led sports club in Yorta Yorta country (Shepparton, VIC).

This project focuses on the young people who swing between Rumbalara and the Academy of Sport Health and Education (ASHE), which provides evidence-based and culturally safe pathways to higher education and employment.

A First On The Ladder photo. A group of children in blue Rumbalara sports jerseys choreograph a dance on a netball court. Blue sky with sparse white clouds is visible behind them.

Rumba Shop! aims to give young people opportunities to become more deeply involved in creative and facilitation work, consolidating their impact as leaders in their community.

Our relationship with the Club began with First On The Ladder, the three-year art-meets-sport collaboration between Polyglot and Beyond Empathy, in partnership with Rumbalara Football and Netball Club and the Moree Boomerangs in northern New South Wales. First On The Ladder ran from 2017-2019 and centred on the young people from these two First Nations sports clubs – celebrating their culture and achievements through a range of creative experiences including filmmaking, street art, radio broadcasting and play workshops.

The opportunity for Polyglot to work collaboratively and to co-create and exchange would not have been possible without the infrastructure, generosity and vision of Rumbalara and the Boomerangs. We are privileged to have had access to the strength of family and culture and the power of sport within regional communities, and to the breadth of engagement these clubs make possible. For Polyglot, working with Rumbalara and the Boomerangs has furthered our understanding and appreciation of how art can speak, work and act.

First On The Ladder had tangible and positive outcomes for Rumbalara. There was growth in confidence and connection in the participating children and families, resulting in stronger ties to community and culture. Rumbalara and Polyglot identified the strength and value of our partnership, and the benefits to its continuation. 

Rumba Shop! is generously supported by Newsboys Foundation.

  • First On The Ladder has increased the opportunities for young people to express themselves, and provided a new way for them to participate in the social and cultural fabric of the Club… First On The Ladder adds to the atmosphere of the Club, and promotes joy, fun and a sense of freedom through the use of imagination and self-expression.

    Belinda Briggs, Rumbalara Football Netball Club

Acknowledgment of country

Polyglot acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we live and create, and we pay our respects to Elders past and present. For more than 65,000 years, children and families have created and played here, and we are grateful to make our art on this country too.