Category: Anouncements

Business Connect in COVID19

On 13th September 2020, the Business Wing of Indian Society of Western Australia (ISWA) organised time for our business people to connect and share information during the challenging times.

About 130 Indian origin business persons participated in the event. The new ISWA website was launched and a business directory (free for corporate members of ISWA) was launched to promote and showcase local business through ISWA website.

It was a great networking event with delicious dinner.

Links for photos below

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Student Connect in COVID19

The Student Wing of Indian Society of Western Australia (ISWA) organised a Free lunch and networking meet-up for all students of Indian origin in WA across all universities and colleges. The event was held in Murdoch University. More than 180 students from different Universities and institutes joined the event.

Kelly Smith, Pro Vice Chancellor International at Murdoch University and Phil Payne,  Chief Executive Officer, StudyPerth, Australia were also present in the event.

On 15th August, 2020, Hon Minister Paul Papalia presented a check of $188,000 to ISWA for extending the support to Indian students during COVID19 time.

During this event the procedures to access the student grant was explained to students seeking help from this relief fund and registration was initiated.

ISWA’s first ever Mentorship Program focusing on the Indian diaspora to identify, develop, connect, integrate, and help excel Indian students in Western Australian industry / market was launched along with $50 grocery voucher to each student who registered for grocery help and

It was a great networking event with great talks, food and DJ.

Links for photos and videos below

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Language and cultural classes

Mast Cultural and language Association

The association has restarted the language and cultural classes. The classes were stopped due to Covid19 now it’s started regularly. The classes are scheduled at 2 pm every Saturday @ Riverton Library.

The students are learning basic Gujarati and Hindi languages. Students are encouraged to identify fonts. Taught and encouraged to speak and express their feeling in their own language i.e. Mother tongue. Students are encouraged to communicate with their elder’s, grandparents in our own language. Students learn about our rich culture, traditions and social traditional festivals. They learn about religious celebrations with social and humanitarian principles. The classes are running free of cost.

You can contact Mausam @ 0470 384 254 or Ranna @ 0413 572 311 weekdays after 5.30 pm.

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Shabri: Mahan Ram Bhakt Ji Katha

Yatendra Sharma

Shri Ram Katha Sansthan Perth, a proud Associate Member of ISWA, is very pleased to announce the publication in e-book form of its new novel authored by its Founder/ President Dr Yatendra Sharma, Shabri: Mahan Ram Bhakt Ji Katha.

It is Hindi edition, English Edition may be available soon. For those interested in Hindi literature on Aryan culture during Treta yug, this book may interest. It may be downloaded from Amazon at a marginal price, around  AU$2.20 only. Since Shri Ram Katha Sansthan is a not for profit organisation, the price is kept very low.

Whomsoever interested but may not have access to Amazon, please advise me on and we will send you free PDF version. Eventually, subject to the approvals of the MC of respective organisations of Hindu Council of Australia, Hindi Samaj of WA and ISWA, a hard copy launch of the novel will be organised once COVID situation is eased. Please circulate this message to those interested in Hindi literature.

त्रेता युग श्री राम का भू अवतार समय।

शबरी: रामायण की एक महत्वपूर्ण पात्र, श्री राम की एक अनन्य भक्त। सीता हरण के पश्चात अरण्य वन में श्री राम और लक्ष्मण एक वृद्ध महिला के आश्रम जाते हैं, और पूछते हैं: “जनकसुता कइ सुधि भामिनी। जानहि कहु करिबर गामिनी॥” क्या शबरी अयोध्या की एक गुप्तचर थीं जिन्हें सीता हरण की पूर्ण जानकारी थी? भील समुदाय के सरदार शबर सेन की पुत्री एवं महर्षि मतंग की शिष्या आचार्य श्रमणा, और एक आर्य महर्षि कुर्तुक की पुत्री , महर्षि भारद्वाज की शिष्या, दसराज्ञ युद्ध की सैन्य-नेता, प्रयाग गुरुकुल की उपकुलपति, ‘पुष्पक विमान’ एवं ‘अग्नि-वाण’ जैसे महान यंत्रों की महर्षि भारद्वाज की सह-आविष्कारक कुर्तकी, के क्या सम्बन्ध थे? महात्मा शबरी एवं महर्षि कुर्तकी को मोक्ष प्रदान एवं उनकी गाथाएं पढ़ने एवं सुनने वालों को सुख, शांति, ऐश्वर्यता एवं वैभवता का वरदान।

जानने के लिए पढ़िए, ‘शबरी: महान राम भक्त की कथा’, पौराणिक कथाओं पर आधारित।

कथा लेखक डॉ यतेंद्र शर्मा – सन १९५३ में एक हिन्दू सनातन परिवार में जन्मे डॉ यतेंद्र शर्मा की रुचि बचपन से ही सनातन धर्म ग्रंथों का पठन पाठन एवं श्रवण में रही है। तकनीकी विश्वविद्यालय ग्राज़, ऑस्ट्रिया, से रसायन तकनीकी में पी.अच्.डी की उपाधि विशिष्टता के साथ प्राप्त करने के पश्चात वह सन १९८९ से अपने परिवार सहित पर्थ ऑस्ट्रेलिआ में निवास कर रहें हैं, तथा पश्चिमी ऑस्ट्रेलिआ के खनन उद्योग में कार्य रत हैं।

वह पर्थ स्थित एक धार्मिक संस्था ‘श्री राम कथा संस्थान पर्थ’ के संस्थापक/ अध्यक्ष हैं। उन्होंने पौराणिक कथाओं पर आधारित कई लघु कथाएं एवं काव्यों की रचना की है। यह संस्था धार्मिक कथाओं का प्रवचन, सनातन धर्म के महान संतों, ऋषियों, माताओं का चरित्र वर्णन एवं उनकी जीवन कथाओं के संकलन में अपना योगदान करने का प्रयास करती रहती है। यह लघु उपन्यास ‘ शबरी: महान राम भक्त की कथा’ उसी प्रयास के फल स्वरूप एक प्रस्तुति है।

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Susy Thomas, Moderator of the Uniting Church WA

Obedient to God’s call: Susy Thomas

When Susy Thomas received a tap on the shoulder to nominate as Moderator Elect of the Uniting Church WA, she was thrown. As a retired, successful CEO of a community service organisation, she was ready to enjoy some rest and much-loved time with her grandchildren. 

She was encouraged to think about being nominated for the position as Moderator  from several people. After a lot of prayer and discernment with her family and friends, she decided she needed to listen to God. “It was a process,” she said. “But I felt very clearly God telling me that I need to be obedient.” 

At the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Synod of WA, Susy was elected to serve as Moderator of the Uniting Church WA from September 2020 to 2023.   

Susy has often felt the call of God on her life. She was born into a Christian family in Kerala, India, raised to act justly, with mercy and to walk humbly with God, never being ashamed of the gospel. She completed a Bachelor of Economics in India and met her husband Philip, before she relocated to London to be with him and begin a family. In 1982, Susy, Phillip and their two daughters migrated to Perth, Western Australia. 

After working as a teacher in Perth for a while, Susy took on the role of CEO of Drug Arm WA, now called Hope Community. In this challenging role, Susy supported disadvantaged people in the suburbs of Perth.

“We talked about how we could do hands-on things for young people, so we started a street outreach program. We had street vans staffed by volunteers who went out to different spots like Fremantle, the city and regional centres.

“I was also a Justice of the Peace by then, so I was often called in to the Rangeview Remand Centre to sign release papers to bailout kids.”

Susy proposed to the board to use a property as accommodation for young people they had bailed from lockup. They would live there while also learning various hands-on skills like woodwork or computer skills, and also receive counselling.

When they had finished the course, a letter was written to the Magistrate advising them of the course they had completed, in the hopes they would take it into account during sentencing – and that the young person might have a brighter future.

“The programs were funded by the State and Federal Governments and we had similar programs in regional centres such as Kalgoorlie and Geraldton.”

During the time Susy worked at Drug Arm, the organisation experienced huge growth and Susy was also involved with setting up a 13-week drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Geraldton.

Since being elected as Moderator Elect in September last year, Susy has been busy preparing for the role. The COVID-19 pandemic has meant that she was unable to visit as many people in person as she would have liked, but it hasn’t stopped her from getting her head stuck into everything required of her as Moderator.

“After I was elected as Moderator Elect, I wanted to learn more about the Uniting Church. Though I was a member of the Uniting Church for 38 years, I have very little understanding of the enormity of the work and the services we provide.

“I’m excited about it. We are a pilgrim people, on the journey for our promised land. Along the way we are worshipping and serving our God. God promises to feed us with Word and sacraments.

“In my mind, our service is whatever we do to please God – that is the worship. You don’t necessarily have to be singing, praising and praying; whenever you’re honouring and pleasing God, it’s worship.”

Susy has spent the year learning from the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC), the Multicultural networks, Uniting Church WA schools, and our agencies such as Uniting WA, Good Sammy Enterprises and Juniper.

“All is in the name of Christ through the Uniting Church WA,” she said. “Our faithful congregations, with their prayers and support, enable us to continue the Lord’s work.

“I want to pray with them, I want to walk with them, I want to be supported by them and I want to support them,” she said. “I am a team player; I don’t think I could do anything without a team. I get energy from others and I want to be a support to others, and also supported by others.

“I also firmly believe in giving ownership. We all have different skills, so give people ownership, so they can blossom in that skill.”

One of the things Susy has done this year, is set her theme for her three-year term. She has chosen Romans 15: 13.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Susy felt this verse came to her from God, and was a great verse to support people through all the challenges of 2020 so far.

“I thought, ‘what a wonderful God to give this hope to God’s chosen people,” she said. “It is a weird time and the world is trying to sort out everything. This is God showing that without God we cannot do anything in our life.”

“I look forward to see what God calls me to do in this job.”

Susy Thomas been installed as Moderator of the Uniting Church WA on Friday 11 September, 7.00pm at Wesley College Chapel, during the Opening Worship of the Annual Meeting of the Synod of WA. 

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Diwali Mela 2020 – Festival of India

Diwali Mela 2020 – Festival of India, the biggest multicultural festival of Indian diaspora in WA on 7th and 8th November 2020 at the Claremont Showground.

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COVID-19 Support

Dear Community Members,
Indian Society of Western Australia (ISWA), in an unprecedented measure, has been joined by forty five (45) of its member associations in a joint appeal to support Indian origin people in the current COVID-19 situation.

ISWA in collaboration with SEWA Australia, is working with the member associations, and has entered a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with SEWA Australia for the purpose of raising funds jointly. SEWA Australia having deductible gift recipients status will collect donations from public and members of associated organisations of ISWA to provide assistance for Australian temporary residents of Indian origin living in Western Australia who are affected by COVID-19.

All the donations are tax deductibleDonations can be made through credit cards online, or by direct bank transfer, as per the following link:

Context – Why the Appeal?
Over the past few weeks, ISWA has taken up a number of initiatives in collaboration with Indian associations in WA, Consul General of India in Perth, Department of Home Affairs, Department of Jobs, Office of Multicultural Interest, Universities and Colleges, Leaders of the various student bodies, and wider community to provide support to the Indian origin people in WA who are affected by COVID-19 pandemic. Some Key Highlights are:

  • A registration link created and widely circulated in the community, to develop a database of the people who need
    help – 
  • A regular live video conference forum established – bringing together students in need with WA Govt officials, CGI Perth, Education experts and community leaders to address the issues quickly
  • Communication channel established with Study Perth, universities and other institutions to discuss opportunities and avenues to help students.
  • A central Covid-19 Support Team established comprising representatives from various associations. 500+ help seekers have been assisted so far by ISWA and association members working closely, through food, groceries, online yoga and other mental health initiatives, live student forum, accommodation support and so on.
  • Push bikes organised for students to commute to jobs / delivery services.
  • Some accommodation organised with the help of associations and individuals for students and parents
  • In collaboration with Australian Indian Medical Association (AIMA), medical help extended to Indian origin students & visiting parents of Indian Origin people with No Medicare Card who are in Perth during this challenging Covid-19 time
  • Special information sessions by experts being organised for small businesses affected by COVID19.

Through this well-coordinated effort we have been able to fulfill the basic needs so far, with the help of our volunteers, community members, grocers and restaurants. However, a number of gaps identified, e.g. wider rental and accommodation issues, lack of jobs and income, education loans, and other needs of the temporary residents of Indian origin which will require significant fund to provide any meaningful solution.

How We Will Use the Fund?
ISWA and participating 45 member associations have jointly established a Project Team that will define the scope and criteria for disbursement of the fund to some key focus areas such as accommodation, job support, urgent relief situation, domestic violence, mental support etc. We believe this fund is very critical to provide a sustainable support to the affected students and families, work permit holders, and other temporary residents of Indian origin to come out of this situation and continue on with their life. 

Member Associations of ISWA Participating in the Appeal
1. Agrawal Association of WA
2. Ambedkarite Buddhist Community
3. Anglo Indian Association of WA
4. Art of Living Foundation
5. Assam Association of Western Australia
6. Australian Indian Club Inc
7. Australian Indian Medical Association
8. Basava Samithi of Australasia Perth Chapter Inc.
9. Chinmaya Mission Perth
10. Goan Overseas Association (WA) Inc
11. Gujarati Samaj Of Western Australia
12. Haryana Society of Western Australia
13. Hindi Samaj of WA
14. Hindu Priest Services
15. Hindu Swayam Sewak Shangh WA
16. Indian Ocean Performing Arts, Culture & Commerce
17. Jain Community of Western Australia
18. Kashmiri Pandit Cultural Society of WA
19. Kerala Hindu Samajam
20. Maharashtra Mandal of Perth WA Inc
21. Malayalee Association of WA (MAWA)
22. MAST Cultural and Language Association
23. Mata Amritanandamayi Association of WA
24. Odia Samaj of Western Australia Incq
25. Orioz WA
26. Panchajanya Inc
27. Perth Malayali Cultural Forum Inc
28. Perth United Malayalee Association Inc
29. Probasee Bengali of Perth
30. Probashi Bengali of WA
31. Punjabi Sath Perth Association Inc.
32. Purobi Association of Western Australia
33. Rajasthani Kutumb of Australia Inc
34. Rangmanch Incorporated
35. Samskruthi Perth
36. Sanskriti Seniors of WA
37. Shri Shirdi Sainath Perth Inc
38. Sikh Gurudwara Perth Inc
39. South West Indian Group, Bunbury
40. Tamil Association of Western Australia Inc
41. Telugu Association of Perth
42. The Vedic Training and Cultural Services of  WA
43. United Indians of Western Australia Inc
44. Western Australia Sindhi Association Inc
45. Western Australia Telugu Association

On behalf of ISWA, SEVA Australia, and all the 45 member associations of ISWA who are participating in this appeal, I request you all to come forward and donate generously. Let us stand together as a community.

Warm Regards,
Supriya Guha
President, ISWA
Mobile: +61 412 977 552

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