Wider Circle of Friends
On Sunday November 10, MWIA welcomed 62 guests for a morning brunch at the Melbourne Museum to acknowledge the outstanding support we receive and to present our 2019-2020 projects.
The cheerful gathering provided an opportunity to bring together our Wider Circle of Friends including members of the Province leadership team, Loreto Sisters, members of the MWIA Board, staff from MWIA, Loreto Ministries and Loreto Mandeville Hall, past pupils, and many of our loyal supporters.
In 2019 – 2020 MWIA will fund 21 projects across 9 countries, enabling the Loreto Sisters and their associates to provide life changing opportunities for the empowerment of women and children through education, personal support, quality nutrition, and health services.
MWIA is committed to supporting projects throughout Australia that have been developed through consultation with outback communities. For these projects to achieve positive impact, it is critical for the community to have a voice and be heard.
It was a privilege to hear from special guest, Dorothée Crawley, Executive Leader – Program Development & Delivery for CatholicCare – Wilcannia Forbes. She provided deep insights into the challenges faced by Indigenous communities in the Wilcannia-Forbes region.
Dorothée spoke of the “Men of Burke” Hub initiative, a program supporting the Indigenous men of Bourke, Western NSW, who commonly face issues of depression, lack of self-esteem, demoralisation, alcohol and substance abuse, incarceration, poor literacy and numeracy, unemployment, domestic violence, and sexual assault. These are symptoms of the underlying effects of the process of colonisation, and the loss of culture, identity and spirituality.
Through years of work with the community of Bourke, CatholicCare identified a need for a dedicated space for Indigenous men, a place that creates a vision of hope and healing providing opportunities for Indigenous men to reconnect with their culture, spirituality and community, a space that feels like ‘home’.
The “Men of Bourke” Hub provides opportunities for learning and connection for men, creating a ripple effect that positively impacts their partners, children, extended family members, and the entire Bourke Community.
To enable the community to grow and become independent, is the greatest gift. Mary Ward International Australia proudly supports the “Men of Bourke” Hub. The hope and healing that this project facilitates is a wonderful example of the vision of Mary Ward progressing through the work of the Loreto Sisters and their associates.
Author: Kim Nass
MWIA Executive Officer
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