Tackling cultural chasms

Rubina Shaheen Nawabi and Rabecca Mphande. 187775 Pictures: STEWART CHAMBERS

By Kyra Gillespie

Cardinia Shire Council’s Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Advisory Committee held the inaugural Cardinia Shire Multicultural Forum on Saturday 17 November.

People from multicultural backgrounds who live or work in Cardinia Shire were invited to join Cardinia councillors and the Victorian Multicultural Commissioner Mr Tsebin Tchen at the Pakenham Hall.

The forum aimed to share information and learn about the issues that are important for the local multicultural community.

“The purpose of the forum was to hear about the experiences people from diverse backgrounds have had since moving into Cardinia,” Cr Leticia Wilmot said.

“We asked participants what they liked about living in Cardinia, the challenges they have and what could help create a better experience of living in Cardinia for our culturally diverse communities.

“The information gathered during the day will help inform council’s new Cultural Diversity Plan as well as being useful when advocating for improved service delivery.

“Commissioner Tsebin Tchen from the Victorian Multicultural Commission was our guest speaker and he congratulated Cardinia Shire for holding this type of forum and the work we are doing to become an inclusive community.”

For attendee Shilps Kaur, the event provided a platform to learn about different cultures.

“It was a great event and great opportunity to talk to and meet people from different cultures,” Ms Kaur said.

“I personally learned so much; the discussions were good and well-facilitated. We were able to ask questions and discuss how to tackle various challenges within the community.

“More of these programs should be organised in the community; they help people come together and build bridges between different cultures and communities.”

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