The Wallaroo Trip planned for Thursday 21st of November was changed to Goolwa, due to the catastrophic bushfire conditions on the Yorke Peninsula the day before. Though disappointed, the seniors understood the situation and were glad that the picnic trip was not cancelled.
Twenty-three seniors went on this trip.
Our first stop over was at Strathalbyn. The River Angas Walkway at this country town was beautiful in spring, with flowers blooming in the rose garden and ducks swimming in the river. The seniors enjoyed strolling along the walkway and visited the antique shops in High Street.
Next, we went to Hindmarsh Island, the Southern Hemisphere’s largest freshwater marina development. We crossed over to the island using the bridge that is connected from Goolwa. The driver took us to Sugars Beach where you can see the mouth of the Murray River – where the river
meets the sea. He gave a brief description about the Murray River which weaves its way through three states – NSW (Yarrawonga), Victoria and South Australia (Goolwa). What a great learning journey.
Subsequently, we arrived at Goolwa Wharf around 1pm. However, due to the unexpected cold and windy weather, the seniors decided to have their picnic lunch in the park instead. They had lunch under a big shelter overseeing the riverfront at Richard Ballard Park. The seniors enjoyed
eating their lunch in the company of their friends. Some even engaged in games and activities while others preferred to explore the town centre. The social interactions indeed had livened up their mood after not being able to go to Wallaroo.
We departed from Goolwa around 2:30pm. The bus driver took a different route back home and passed by Middleton and Port Elliot. It was indeed a scenic and spectacular drive as he took us near the seaside. The sea was beautiful, and we might have spotted two whales in the sea! It was the
highlight of the day.
Recently MWASA hosted a Citizenship Session under the SETS (Settlement Engagement and Transition Support) program, specifically for Syrian clients. The presenter had requested for it to be Syrians only, due to visa differences in clients from Syria and Afghanistan.
The presenter was Okke Velzeboer, from the Department of Home Affairs. Okke is the South Australian Community Liaison Officer in the Citizenship and Multicultural Programs Division.
The session covered the rights, responsibilities and privileges of being an Australian citizen. Okke also went through the eligibility criteria, application process, documents required, interview and citizenship test and application processing duration.
The ladies enjoyed the session and had lots of questions to ask from the presenter. The session was fun and also very informative and useful as the ladies will soon be eligible to apply for citizenship.
The excursion coincided with the celebration of the 22nd year of the SALA (South Australian Living Artists) Festival, where 8,000 artists participated in 700 exhibitions across Adelaide and regional SA.
Ten members participated in this event.
The group started with a leisurely walk to the Migration Museum. The weather was excellent and the 30 minute walk was good exercise for the seniors.
The Migration Museum offers a range of permanent and temporary exhibitions and activities. The exhibitions that were showcased on the day include:
- Portraits of Elizabeth explores the migration experience and the resilience of community through the stories of Elizabethans, both past and present.
- Island Welcome Exhibition explores contemporary jewellery as a gesture of greeting in response to current Australian immigration and refugee policy.
- Leaving Britain & Establishing South Australia explores what it was like for British settlers making the journey to South Australia and taking the first steps towards building a new colony.
Next, the seniors visited the Art Museum which showcased the exhibition “Love From Damascus: The art of devotion in Islam”. The exhibition explores the divine and worldly aspects of Islamic devotion expressed artistically over one thousand years.
One Saturday towards the end of September, MWASA (Muslim Women’s Association of SA) held “A cross-cultural exploration of women’s rights through time to commemorate 125 years of women’s suffrage in SA”.
The event was held in the Bradley Forum of the Hawke Centre, on the UniSA City West campus. UniSA allows the centre to be used for educational free community events and we acknowledge and thank them for that.
The event was opened with a lovely Quran recitation from Sister Ulfat. She recited paragraph 35 of the chapter Al Ahzab (known in English as The Confederates) in the original Arabic and then the English translation was shared so that everybody could fully appreciate the meaning. For your convenience we have included the paragraph here.
Following the Quran recitation, Chairperson Dora Abbas welcomed the gathering with a few dignified words.
Each speaker of the day was introduced by a supremely elegant MC: Sister Peta Abdalla.
The Guest of Honour for this event was Katrine Hildyard MP. Katrine works tirelessly towards bettering the lives of all South Australians. In Katrine’s fight for a fair and inclusive society she has actively encouraged and made space for CaLD women to have their voice heard in parliament. She shared with us a few words about her own personal journey and experiences as a female Member of Parliament. Everyone present was touched by Katrine’s words, she is truly a brave and highly motivated woman.
Presenting directly on the SA women’s suffrage movement was Mandy Paul. Mandy is Director at the SA Migration Museum and she herself contains an immense wealth of state history. Her speech was accompanied by a slideshow, it was very interesting to put faces to the names of the leading suffragists and their key supporters. Whilst celebrating the achievements of the suffragists, we must acknowledge and respect that the same freedoms were not extended to Aboriginal men and women until much later. We are grateful for and enriched by Mandy’s unbiased talk.
Presenting a Muslim woman’s perspective on the SA women’s suffrage movement was Melati Lum. Melati Lum is a practising lawyer specialising in public law and criminal prosection, an Australian/Malay/Chinese Muslim mum, and author of the Ayesha Dean mystery series for children. In her spare time, she is working on her next novel for a young adult audience. Melati brought several historical Muslim women to life for the audience by recounting some monumental achievements. There is a misconception that Islam oppresses women, when in reality it is humans who oppress each other and rather Islamic guidelines provide structure where a woman can be heard and be successful with her education and/or business empire.
Proceedings were concluded with an opportunity for all attendees to network over refreshments.
Everybody had the opportunity to provide feedback after the event. A template was provided asking specifically how satisfied people were with everything from promotions before the event, to the venue and seating, to each of the speeches. We can proudly say that we received 5 out of 5 across the board!
For more information about the Suffragists
The Muslim Women’s Association of SA would like to congratulate the Governor of South Australia, His Excellency the Honourable Hieu Van Le AC, on his extended appointment.
The Government of SA Government House website is an official source for the biography of the Governor, we will instead speak only from personal experience.
His Excellency has been a friend to our organisation, graciously attending and speaking at milestone events.
When our office relocated to our current location in the Flinders University building, His Excellency cut the ribbon during the auspicious ceremonial opening.
Earlier this year, at our Silver Jubilee Celebration for Service Providers, His Excellency gave a particularly insightful and moving speech where he expressed his gratitude and pleasure regarding the community services provided by MWASA for the settlement and wellbeing of refugees, in light of his own lived experience as a refugee.
Governor Hieu Van Le is an admirable role model, not only for refugees but indeed for everyone, a symbol of how much a person can raise themselves above dire circumstances through integrity, humility and generosity.
MWASA would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate and thank Mrs Le for her strong history of community involvement and support.
His Excellency and Mrs Le are charming guests on top of being absolute pillars of the South Australian community, we look forward to continuing our friendship with them and can hardly wait to see what other positive projects and progress the future brings.