Obaid Jamshidi.

“To all my Afghan family and friends” from Obaid Jamshidi. “We are going through some of the darkest days in our life. A lot of things are racing through our minds in the last couple of days or weeks – what will happen to the future of our generation with Taliban being in power and what will happen to our hard work over the last 20 years and everything we have achieved is going backwards in a matter of a week.

“I have never ever felt that I will be this upset about Afghanistan. However, here we are.

“Watching the devastating situation rapidly developing over our beloved Afghanistan.

“I don’t want to focus on the political side of this issue. However, let me remind you that Afghanistan has long history of conflicts by foreign affairs. Many tried to control the country but failed; from Greeks, to the Persian, Mongols, Sikh, Soviet, British and even to the American and now back to the Taliban.

“This cycle will continue due to the geographical location of the country and its wealth of natural minerals.

“Let me reassure you that at the end of the tunnel there is light. So please don’t give up, don’t lose hope, don’t panic and most importantly don’t lose your temper. We are well educated now and we have learned a lot from the past.

Continue reading “Obaid Jamshidi.”

Catalyst for Change, Lisa.

“I never imagined I would find myself homeless. I am an articulate, well educated, professional who has worked as a teacher, security guard and in the welfare sector. I was raised a Jehovah’s Witness in a single parent household.

“At age eleven, I came out to my mum. The response I received was to pray and study harder because my sexuality was not acceptable in the Jehovah’s Witness religion.

“I developed feelings of shame, guilt, isolation, and of not really fitting in or belonging. Over the years I’ve worked hard to change my mindset and become comfortable in my own skin, which in 2015 led me to write and publish a book to help others. I won’t play the victim. I’m going to use my lived experiences as catalysts for change, serving to empower others to be their change.

Continue reading “Catalyst for Change, Lisa.”

Salty Sundays.

“When I was young, I endured physical and psychological abuse, which resulted in serious trauma. This led to a spiral downwards of alcohol and drug abuse, and mental health issues. But I’ve been able to turn this around.” Dylan Chidley, of Salty Sundays tells us more.

“I’d been working in the mining industry, where I was set up for life, earning an attractive salary, but I felt dead inside. I threw it in, to spread the strength of the power of the mind, clean living and physical activity. I started a Personal Training business called Universal Strength that serviced people in getting strong physically but also mentally, focusing on mental health. Lockdowns saw the end to this business. I’m working a trade now, but I needed to connect with others who wanted more from life. Salty Sundays has been the answer.

“I have successfully beaten cancer twice and overcome a brutal bone marrow transplant. It’s Hodgkin’s Lymphoma which is Leukemia’s little brother. I know a combination of mental strength, physical strength, healthy diet and supplements helps. If you don’t truly believe you’ll get better, then you won’t get better. I have a very firm belief that the mind controls our every cell. I’ve shared every step of this journey via @sweetchillidilly.

“Salty Sundays started about 4 months ago with me jumping in to the freezing water off the swimming enclosure at Easter Beach. I believe it’s a great way to reset your mind by making the cold your friend.

Continue reading “Salty Sundays.”

WILD 2021.

WILD (Women in Local Democracy) is establishing a new Network, Empowering Women 50/50 to reach the State Government target of gender parity at the next Council elections.

The Network will be chaired by City of Great Geelong Councillor, Dr Belinda Moloney, and launched by Dr Niki Vincent, Victoria’s Public Sector Gender Equality Commissioner, at an early evening event at the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre on Thursday, 30 Septemberplease save the date.

WILD invites you to join this exciting initiative.

We are aiming for 100+ Network members of both progressive women candidates and supporters by the launch date, and building to 1,000 in the lead up to the October 2024 elections.  In this way we will demonstrate strong community-wide support for gender equality in Council representation.

WILD hopes you will join the Network, and also encourages you to promote membership of the Network with friends/colleagues/neighbours who support the achievement of gender parity on Councils by 2025.  Please feel free to forward to others who might be interested.

If you would like to be part of this exciting initiative to achieve gender parity on Councils please email your name, phone number and email address to wildgeelong@gmail.com

Photo supplied. WILD committee: Maria Bohan, Mahnaz Khan and Priscilla Pescott.

Lazarus Community Centre, Les.

“Being out on the streets has depressed me at times. I was born in Apollo Bay, grew up there, went to school there. I worked on a dairy farm for a while, did roadworks and Council work.

“I think the most significant challenge was getting use to not having my parents around. They use to help me out at times if I needed it.

“After I lost my parents, it made me realise, ‘I have to do all this on my own’. I had a job working on King Island at the meat works. Before the redundancy happened, I thought I’d be sticking that one out until retirement. The redundancy threw a spanner in the works. I ended up in Geelong staying at a friend’s but that didn’t work out.

“Just a couple of bad breaks and you are out on your butt, out on the streets, with a back pack on, thinking, ‘what am I going to do now?’ The worst thing for me, and a lot of homeless, is finding somewhere to camp for the night, out of the weather and all.

“I’ve found an abandoned house with a shed out the back. I have a mattress, couple of blankets and a pillow, it is somewhere to go back to. At least I’m not camped in the mall or in a street somewhere. How long that’ll last, I’m not sure.

Continue reading “Lazarus Community Centre, Les.”

Miniature Railway.

Would you like to see a miniature railway in North Geelong? Geelong Miniature Railway Inc and the Lions Club of Corio Norlane Inc, have come together, and joined forces to make this happen. This exciting and unique project will provide an affordable outdoor family recreational activity within a safe and inviting environment. The miniature railway would be a 7 ¼ inch and 5 inch passenger carrying railway.

The miniature railway site will offer a place for people from all socio-economic demographics to participate and forget life’s trudges for a while. Geelong Miniature railway plans to construct a fully equipped fabrication workshop, which will allow us to teach and train the wider Community trade-based skills from welding, metal fabrication, electronics, spray painting, small engine repairs, and much more…

Involvement in the project will minimize the issues of isolation, loneliness and depression among interested members from our community.

Both Clubs have a great interest in our youth and want to engage with local youth and teach them trade skills on and off local high school campuses. Skills learnt through the project, will give students an advantage, when applying for trade-based apprenticeships and employment.

Continue reading “Miniature Railway.”

Mangroves from the Water, Exhibition.

‘What I have been preparing to say is, that in wilderness is the preservation of the world.’ HD Thoreau

“I moved to Geelong from the United Arab Emirates in 2017.  I was happy to discover the mangrove forests at Barwon Heads and began to learn the history of the land around my new home.  I researched how the mangrove landscapes of the Port Phillip and coastal fringe areas were irrevocably transformed by colonial occupation.  I also discovered that such change has caused a loss of biodiversity that unfortunately is now a feature of Australia’s ecology.” Zahidah Zeytoun Millie tells us more.  

Contributing artists.

“Mangroves – Vanguards of the Sea.  Ecologically important in linking land and sea, mangroves are part of Nature’s wilderness.  The estuarine forests along northern Australia’s coastline are at risk, as stated by the Australian Government, Department of Environment and Energy.  In southern Australia, though, where wilderness areas have suffered all so greatly, mangrove forests are rarely noticed or celebrated.  A common perception of the beauty of the Victorian coastline is white sandy beaches, not an estuarine forest of mangrove trees.  Searching tourism and environment websites of the Barwon Heads region where mangroves surround Lake Connewarre I find information about ocean greens relating to golf clubs and white sandy beaches for surfing, swimming, or walking.  One can be amazed by plants like bull kelp, sandstone arches and sponge gardens, yet nothing about mangroves. 

Continue reading “Mangroves from the Water, Exhibition.”

Play On.

“Last year, the statistics show that there were 3,318 suicide deaths in Australia. 75% of these deaths were males. Play On has been inspired by Abraham Knox. We hope to make a difference. The event is scheduled for August 15th or when Covid rules allow. All males are welcome at this event.

“There will be a traditional Welcome to Country and ceremony. Guest Speaker and Ice Bath facilitator, Mark Kluwer, will share with us breathing techniques that can be used to connect mind and body, which builds physical and mental strength. Ice Bath optional.

“Facilitator, Joel Hines, brings a wealth of knowledge to the table, in regards to teaching different techniques and exercises that we can use as blokes to change the way we view and discuss mental health.

“Guest speaker, Boh Evans, will share his story about his own battle with mental health and the loss of his nephew Abraham Knox. You can read Boh’s earlier story here: https://humansingeelong.com/2021/04/29/just-breathe/

“To finish off the day there will be delicious roast free range pork from Catherine Farm and 100% grass fed beef from Brooklands Free Range Farms, Blampied, Central Highlands, Vic.

“All profits from this event will be donated to Hope Bereavement Care Geelong, a not-for-profit organisation based in Geelong offering free information, support and counselling when grieving the death of a child, the sudden and unexpected death of an adult, and those experiencing loss after suicide.

“Due to the subject that will be discussed, parental discretion is advised. Come on men get behind this great initiative and be a part of keeping Abe’s legacy alive.”

From the Play On team. Photo supplied.

Calling all First Nation’s Artists.

Humans in Geelong love a chance for artistic talent to shine, especially  in our local area, so if you’re a First Nations artist, here’s an opportunity not to miss!

Geelong Arts Centre are looking for First Nations artists to have their creations be part of the  centre’s redeveloped spaces.. but be quick as applications close 5pm next Thursday 29 July 2021! 

Find out more at   https://geelongartscentre.org.au/news/calling-all-first-nations-artists-and-creators/

Geelong Arts Centre, photo supplied.

National Tree Day 2021.

Yes, I’m a tree hugger! I always get excited to see that National Tree Day is coming up. This year the school’s Tree Day is next Friday 30th of July. I’ve planted thousands of trees over the years with students at Leopold Primary School and now Highton Primary School.

National Tree Day, City of Greater Geelong planting, has been rescheduled to Sunday August 29th.

The City of Greater Geelong holds community tree planting on the Sunday. With the assistance from the community the aim is to plant 3,500 trees along the large section of the Ted Wilson Trail at the rear of Haines Reserve. The address is 1a Wilks Street, Hamlyn Heights, VIC 3215

You can find out more and register here: https://treeday.planetark.org/site/10025503

It’s always great to see families working together planting trees.

Organisers tell us “Dress according to weather condition. Hat, sunscreen, gloves & appropriate foot wear. Lions Club will be in attendance with a sausage sizzle and refreshments along with Blood Toyota Geelong who are a major sponsor of Planet Ark National Tree Day & Barwon Water.

“Come for an hour or come all day and enjoy being a part of protecting the future.”

Photo supplied.