International Women’s Day 2021

This week we held two International Women’s Day events, one at Cockburn and one in Kwinana. It’s always great to get our community together and share our journeys. This year’s theme was #ChooseToChallenge. A challenged world is an alert world. Individually, we are all responsible for our own thoughts and actions – all day, every day. We can choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. We can choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements. It’s a day for inspiration and change, it’s a day to choose to challenge. Our IWD celebrations kicked off on Tuesday 9 March at the CRC in Cockburn. We were excited to welcome two males to our event City of Cockburn Mayor Logan Howlett and David Scaife, local labor candidate for Cockburn. Community members gathered to listen to our guest speaker Kelley Chisholm who is a speaker, author, overseas aid worker and co-founder of ‘kinwomen’. She is also the founder of Foxglove Project, with its flagship program Grassroots Rwanda supporting more than 20,000 women into self-help groups and small business. Kelley spoke about the Foxglove Project, and how they work in the developing world supporting women into micro business so they can … Read More

Celebrating Culture in Cockburn

International cuisine, multicultural performances, live music and children’s cultural activities transformed the CRC Cockburn into a cultural hub on Sunday 1 November at the Celebrating Culture in Cockburn event. Families from across Cockburn took in sights, sounds and tastes from around the globe as they basked in the Cockburn community spirit and celebrated the many cultures that make up the vibrant Cockburn community. The event was opened with a smoking ceremony and welcome to country by Marie Taylor. Whilst people feasted on international delicacies colourful community performances brought people together through the joy of dance and music. There were performances from the Cockburn Chinese Association, Empowered Avenue Scottish Highland Dancers, Dara Thai Dancing School, Okinawan Dance and Drumming group, Chinese Cultural Dance Group as well as Persian and Indian performances from local community members.  The performances culminated with a show-stopping performance from Ngaru Pou Inc who had over 30 children perform four cultural songs and dances, including the Haka. “This event enabled local community groups and children to showcase their cultural heritage.” said Jane Miller Partnership Director at Connecting Community for Kids. “It was amazing to get the community together and help them form bonds and friendships, especially due to … Read More

My Journey to School Booklet 

Exciting News! The ECFN (Education, Care and Family Network Kwinana) have just launched the hugely anticipated ‘My Journey to School’ booklet, which is the result of a collaboration between Connecting Community for Kids, Ngala, Goodstart Early Learning and Leda Primary School, and supported by the Department of Education. The booklet was designed in consultation with the local community and families. The booklet is filled with information from pregnancy to school entry for Kwinana parents and carers and ensures a smooth transition to school by preparing children and families during the early years including: Your child’s journey from pregnancy to school age Your child’s journey the year before school When and how to enrol your child into school How to prepare your child for school Details of educational facilities and primary schools in Kwinana Services and programs available in Kwinana View My Journey to School Booklet here.  

Day of Cultural Pride

Kwinana’s cultural diversity was celebrated in style over the weekend at our Multicultural Clothes Party. The event was an opportunity to embrace diversity by bringing people from all walks of life together to celebrate the many cultures that make up our vibrant community. The Celebrate Culture team opened the event by performing Wanjoo (The welcome song in Noongar).  Host Sarah-Jane Patton (Community Development Officer – diversity at the City of Kwinana) then welcomed the attendees. Families were invited to celebrate diversity by dressing in their traditional clothes, and we saw some stunning costumes from all across the globe including India, Bali, Germany, Ireland, Pakistan, China, Philippines, Morocco and Australia. Local groups and community members were invited to showcase their talents with dances, songs and music from: Kereshmeh Dance Group – (Persian) Perth South Dance Group (CCCA) Southern Suburbs Malayali Association Ngaru Pou Inc – Maori dance group Attendees feasted on a range of traditional delights including:  Pakistani Fruit Chat (Pakistani Fruit Salad) Damper Persian Ghorme Sabzi (lamb and herb stew), Lavash (bread) and chelo (rice with saffron) Indian dip with crackers Sevaya Kheer (vermicelli milk pudding) dessert using cardamom spice mild, toasted vermicelli noodles, dried fruit and nuts Gulab Jamun … Read More

Lora’s Story

Lora grew up in Sarajevo during the war and siege of Sarajevo. Read her story of remarkable human resilience and and togetherness. Lora’s Story Lora grew up in Sarajevo during the war and siege of Sarajevo. She was born in 1984, the year that the city held the Winter Olympics. The first seven years of Lora’s life were peaceful and happy, growing up with her Mum, Dad, and younger Brother. She grew up in a predominantly Muslim household, however, Lora was raised to explore her own choice and was always encouraged to engage and befriend into other cultures and religions. But eight years later Sarajevo found itself at the heart of the Bosnian War. Bosnian Serb troops encircled the city, their snipers taking position in the surrounding hills and mountains. Lora, her family, and residents of Bosnia were relentlessly and indiscriminately bombarded with mortar shells and were under constant fire from snipers. The first Bosnian army recruits Lora said “were our fathers, uncles and brothers who had never held a gun before”. As time went by supplies began to dwindle. Lora and her family were without food, electricity, heat and water for most of the war. She lived in constant … Read More

Ravneer’s Story

Ravneer was in an abusive marriage at the age of 22. She was scared of ruining her family’s reputation and suffered years of abuse in silence. Ravneer’s Story Ravneer was born in (Punjab, India) where she lived with her family for all of her childhood years. Her family was very open-minded, different from traditional Indian culture and she led a happy, independent and sheltered life. Once she entered her 20’s, she found her love of her life and her parents supported the decision.  Just after her marriage, Ravneer and her Husband moved to Perth. Life was looking bright in a wonderful new Country. However the bubble of happiness didn’t last long and red flags started appearing very early on in the marriage with controlling behaviour, nasty words and constant humiliation. This quickly escalated into physical, emotional, financial, mental and psychological abuse. When he beat her it wasn’t just the pain and bruises, but the sense of shame she was putting onto her family and the torrent of earth shattering insults that would follow – not just from her Husband but his family as well. The psychological abuse and mind games also hit a peak. She was constantly being told she … Read More

Belle’s Story

Belle is an inspirational local mother of five children who has overcome a toxic relationship, cancer, loss and hardship to become a strong centred mum who now looks forward to the future with hope and joy. Belle’s Story Belle is a local Cockburn mum of five children. When we met her in mid-2018 her children were aged from 15 months (twins) to just seven years. She was a single mum who had just fled from an abusive relationship and arrived in Perth with limited connections outside of her immediate family. Belle was the first mum to receive support from our Community Mothers Program. (A volunteer-led support program where local mums receive training to provide in-home support to mums in the community).  At the time we met Belle she was facing challenges from all directions – financial, housing, schooling and professional support for her older children. Belle was doing an amazing job, raising five healthy, happy children but it took an enormous toll on her own mental and physical health. In 2019 she faced the devastation of losing both her dad and grandfather within 5 weeks and was then diagnosed with cancer herself.  “Losing all the male role models in both … Read More

Stevie’s Story

We met a lovely lady called Larissa in June 2019 when she contacted us to see if she could be matched up with one of our Community Mothers for some parenting support. She would often talk about her supportive husband Stevie, and her two gorgeous children aged 2 and 1 years.  Larissa told us that she met Stevie many years ago when they were both receiving treatment for cancer, and she spoke about how she was now in remission and life was blooming, she had a wonderful family and friends and they were thinking about buying a forever family home. It was only a few months later that the cancer sadly returned and it was ruthless – Larissa lost her battle in December 2019. It was a very dark time for Stevie who was now facing life alone as single Father of two young children. He was unable to leave the house and lost all of his confidence and independence. Our wonderful Community Mother Steph who had been allocated to Larissa contacted Stevie one day to see how he was doing. When she realised the anguish that Stevie was in she quickly put a plan into place, along with Kyle from … Read More