REFUGEE WEEK…..Restoring Hope
NORTHERN RIVERS REFUGEE FUNDRAISER
Movie Screenings…short films & feature film
‘MARY MEETS MOHAMMED’
Refugee Week is Australia’s peak annual activity to inform the public about refugees and celebrate positive contributions made by refugees to Australian society. The ultimate aim of the celebration is to create better understanding between different communities and to encourage successful integration enabling refugees to live in safety and to continue making a valuable contribution to Australia.
Leandro Mendes (St Vincent De Paul) and Kat Cobley are organising a Refugee Week fundraiser in Byron Bay on Wednesday 18 June. This is a very exciting event as it will be the first event in Byron Bay for Refugee Week in many years ! There will be a big raffle, interesting guest speakers and the screening of some short films and the feature film Mary Meets Mohammed. This film follows the arrival of Tasmania’s first detention centre through the eyes of local Christian woman and knitting club member Mary and Muslim Afghan Hazara asylum seeker Mohammad, who is detained inside the centre – as they connect through the gift of a knitted beanie.
The objective of this fundraiser is to raise awareness of refugees in this region and across Australia, some of the challenges they face moving to a new country and the significant contribution they can make to a new country. The funds raised will allow St Vincent De Paul to organise an excursion for local refugees in to Byron Bay to visit the beach and lighthouse. Although Byron Bay is not very far from Lismore, the reality is that for a lot of people from refugee background transport is a real issue.
Some of the aims of Refugee Week include educating the Australian public about who refugees are and why they have come to Australia; to help people understand the many challenges refugees face coming to Australia; to celebrate the contribution refugees make to our community; to focus on how the community can provide a safe and welcoming environment for refugees and for community groups and individuals to do something positive for refugees, asylum seekers and displaced people, within Australia and also around the world.
Refugee Week is a unique opportunity for us all to experience and celebrate the rich diversity of refugee communities !