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Harman Foundation’s ‘Light and Hope’ dinner raised funds for ‘HER House’

Harman Foundation organised its 9th ‘Light and Hope’ Dinner on 29 April 2022 at Bowman Hall, Blacktown. The function was well attended by many dignitaries and political leaders including the community people and volunteers.

Committed group of volunteers have always been a backbone of Harman Foundation and their efforts were quite evident from the programme they put forth to raise funds for the worthy cause. This time the funds raised from the dinner will be used for Harman Foundation’s HER house initiative.

As the name goes, ‘Light and Hope’ the funds raised through this event will be used for various community services offered by the Harman Foundation including family support services, senior support services, food for needy, help to the domestic victims, shelter for the needy, disabled support services to include a few.

The programme stated with Australian National Anthem followed by a Shabad.

A tribute was paid to the indigenous community of Australia and emcee introduced Zona Wilkinson- a representative from Aboriginal community.

She is popularly called as ‘Aunty Zona Wilkinson and is a Gamiliraay artist from North-western NSW and has contributed a lot in the arts industry as an artist, art teacher and a curator and is equally involved in Aboriginal Football Knockout.

Zona Wilkinson while speaking on the occasion praised the efforts of the Harman Foundation and assured every possible support to the Harman Foundation.

Political leaders along with government officials including Michelle Rowland – MP, Tony Bleasdale – Mayor of Blacktown, Stephen Bali- MP, Kevin Conolly- Member for Riverstone, Dr Geoff Lee- Minister for corrections, Nathan Burbridge- Chief Operations Officer SydWest Multicultural and others attended the function.

Chief guest Tony Bleasdale while speaking on the occasion appreciated Harman foundation for their remarkable community work.

He said that Blacktown Council is always there to support Harman Foundation and their community initiatives in every possible way.

Michelle Rowland and Dr Geoff Lee also applauded the efforts made by Harman Foundation to help the community and the nation in the times of need and distress.

Harinder Kaur, CEO and co-founder of Harman Foundation while talking to Public Telegraph said, “Harman Foundation is all because of its volunteers who with their own set of expertise are always upfront to offer different community services.”

While speaking about the Community services being offered by Harman Foundation, Harinder Kaur said, “We are expert in doing things which are either left out or don’t catch the attention of other community organisations. We find the gaps and try to work on those gaps rather than duplicating the things.  For example, many people from our cultural background have no one to talk to or share their problems, there is when we jump in.”

“As a part of the local sub- continent community, we have a better understanding of the cultural and community barriers, so we can respond to their problems in a better way while keeping in mind cultural mind-sets and sentiments. Being from the same background they feel a sense of safety and we can also relate to them. Domestic violation is a big issue in our community and many communities here is Australia as well.”

As Domestic Violation (DV) still is a taboo in the society many people either remain silent or don’t speak about it publicly.

“Harman Foundation has been working very closely with domestic violation victims. Harman Foundation Empowerment and Refuge House (HER House) is one of major initiatives of the foundation. HER house provides a safe refuge to the vulnerable women and their children while also offering them case and management services.”

“I have come across cases where DV victims have called us in the mid of the night that they don’t have a place to go, so that is where our role starts.”

“HER house is all about providing a safe shelter to DV victims. Apart from that we always assist the victims to become self- independent and regain their confidence and self-esteem. This year all the money raised through this fundraiser will be used towards HER house initiative,” she added.

To keep the audience entertained the whole evening was well spread in various sections of speeches, dance and music performances, raffles along with auctions.

Neeru Singh and Emie Roy did a fabulous job as emcees for the evening.

Ruchi Sanghi Dance company presented an enthralling Kathak performance while    the Bollywood performance by NIPA Sydney- choreographed and led by Dr Kannan Shah was another highlight of the evening.

Upbeat bhangra performance by Rooh Punjab Di set the mood for the evening and the dance floor was opened for everyone to enjoy and dance.

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