Guy Power, advocate and community visitor made this video of the members of the Glenbrook with their signs at Glenbrook.
First of a series of posts on some of the wide range of people who make up Blue Mountains Support Group Inc. Our promotion says ""Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group Inc is a diverse group of ordinary Australians from all sides of politics....We are all volunteers." Some of our most enthusiastic supporters are young people. Read two accounts of young people who are helping; the Automotive Studies students at Blaxland High School and Sam who raised over $1100 by running in the City to Surf 2018.
Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen visited Sacred Heart Church Blackheath on Sunday 26 August for Migrant and Refugee Sunday. Bishop Long fled Vietnam on a refugee boat in 1979, following two of his brothers who had already left, and reached Malaysia, where he spent 16 months in a refugee camp where he learned English. He reached in Australia in 1980. In his homily he discussed Pope Francis' invitation to be “Welcoming, Protecting, Promoting and Integrating towards Migrants and Refugees”.
Peter Dutton announced to Ray Hadley that Australia was not signing 'The Global Compact". So what it is? It is the first universal instrument to provide common frameworks, guiding principles and approaches to deal with international migration. It has been developed over 18 months of multi-stakeholder consultations and six rounds of negotiations between UN member states with conflicting interests. The final draft, completed on 18 July 2018, Read two concise informative summaries that explain what it is and why it is important.
Joy Connor, Deputy Chair BMRSG visited politicians in Canberra with Marie Sellstrom President of Rural Australians for Refugees. First they met with Peter Dutton's main advisor and an advisor then they met with Shayne Neumann, Ged Kearney, Sue Templeman and the Advisor to Kristina Keneally. At these meetings they discussed Immigration Detention, the use of handcuffs on people seeking asylum when they went to medical and counselling appointments, SRSS, resettlement, The Amendments to the Migration Act, the RAR Statement on People Seeking Refuge and Asylum and the Andrew Wilkie Bill.
Blue Mountains locals were welcomed to a traditional Tibetan cultural celebration to commemorate the 14th Dalai Lama’s 83rd birthday last Friday at the old library in Katoomba. The event gave exiled Tibetans living in the Blue Mountains an opportunity to thank the Blue Mountains community and celebrate the Dalai Lama’s birthday with the taste, colour, music and dance of Tibet. There are approximately 50 Tibetan adults and children living in the Blue Mountains and many arrived in Australia on humanitarian visas. All of them are refugees or children of refugees who fled Tibet after the Chinese occupation in 1950 and made the long trek over the Himalayas to reach safety in Nepal. The first Tibetan refugee settled in Katoomba nine years ago and others arrived after the Dalai Lama visited the Blue Mountains in 2015. In the last six months some families have arrived directly from India on humanitarian visas. Ms Dhongdue praised the local community saying that Tibetan refugees had been ‘embraced with warmth and love’.
BMRSG, led by Joy Connor, ran a packed out workshop, Changing Hearts and Minds. Participants came up with a long list of activities which they had successfully tried in their home towns. The list on butcher's paper was shared with all on the wall and other participants added to it.
In this the 3rd year of the Youth Shoebox Project even more were received. More than 203 were delivered to children and young people seeking refuge and asylum. This project is a joint effort with Mountains Youth Services Team (MYST) and Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group (BMRSG) - working together to spread love and support.