KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH THE COMMUNITY
19 March 2014 6 October 2011
Independent FORTNIGHTLY COMMUNITY NEWS
No posh frocks please: 2 NEWS
Potatoes with a difference for
MEN’S SHED Meat Free Week OPEN DAY Page 3
Volume 08 No.16
BURWOOD RATE INCREASE UNDER ASSESSMENT See page 9 6 October 2011
CHAPLAIN’S HONOUR Charity worker honoured at International Women’s Day awards by Mitchell Jordan
LIKE most migrants, starting again in Australia led to a whole new life for Strathfield’s Christine Prouty and her family. It also saw her step into the spotlight when the 57-year-old was given at award at Parliament House this International Women’s Day to recognise her outstanding work with charities, school students, families and refugees in the Strathfield Electorate. “The award was something I never would have dreamed of,” she recalled. “I don’t expect any kind of award because I enjoy what I do.” Standing in Parliament House with 70 other “inspiring” women was the result of a 23-year journey for Christine, who with her husband and two children, left the United States behind and set up home in the inner-west. The family made the move after husband had gained a new position with a Christian organisation, which they saw as a great opportunity. The language may be the same between the two
Strathfield’s International Women’s Day awardee, Christine Prouty, with Homebush West Public School leaders.
countries, though Australia was not without its challenges, which included everything from learning the local lingo to meeting new people and forging friendships. When Christine’s children started studying at Homebush West Public School, she began working in the school uniform shop. Rising through the ranks of the P&C committee and tackling charities such as the
Red Shield Appeal and Wrap With Love, Christine is today a school chaplain, a position which she received under a Federal government grant. “I get to help build community and make people feel part of the school,” she said. “When my family came to Australia we didn’t know anyone and I think that helps build bridges with people because we’re in a multicultural
community. A lot of other people are from overseas and don’t know anyone, either.” Religion underpins much of Christine’s community involvement. “I know that God loves me and I want to share God’s love; that’s what motivates me,” she explained. “I’m not a mother at Homebush anymore but I know the principal and teachers
appreciate the extra hands – I’m an extension of their arms,” Christine said. A diagnosis with breast cancer has proved a turning point in Christine’s life. The community response – as much as her recent award – proved just how much her work is valued. “When I was diagnosed I didn’t want to see a lot of people,” she recalled.
“People kept sending me cards and photos and keeping me connected. This made it easier for me to go back to the school.” Being in the company of others like herself this International Women’s Day has given Christine a further boost. “We need to encourage women,” she said. “There’s unlimited ideas out there … women can do it.”
19 March 2014
T USED TO SOUND A BIT weird that Australians could hold their own in winter sports at Olympic level, let alone be medal contenders. That thinking has changed to expectation now that Australia has won medals of all colours in six consecutive Winter Olympics, beginning with a short track medal in 1994, which emanated from a program almost in our backyard at Canterbury Ice Rink. I’ve been lucky enough to be involved in eight Winter Olympics (safely now
By Belinda Noonan
THERE’S ICE IN MY VEINS
BURWOOD ‘veteran’ status I guess) as a coach then broadcaster and to see how far Australia has come on the world stage over that time is very rewarding. The inner west can lay claim to five of the sixty 2014 Winter Olympians from Sochi in Danielle O’Brien, Greg
Merriman, Taylah O’Neill, Lucy Glanville and Pierre Boda, who all either live or went to school locally. That’s a strong representation and shows that dreams can and do come true. So, what was Sochi like? The competitive venues were wonderful. The Iceberg Skating
Palace is as perfect for figure skating as Suncorp is for rugby league. In the modern age, Olympic venues are all top class. Technology in how to make faster, perfect ice for all sports and equipment advances has moved into the mind boggling and the difference between a medal and middle of the field can be measured in split hairs. Some of the stories regarding media accommodation were overblown and some were not. Certainly, my accommodation was more than adequate, but had a feeling of being in a compound, removed from any general shopping area. Security onto and off most buses was
very strict some days and not at all on others. But what of the people whose space we commandeered and treated as our own for three weeks? Thousands of young Russian students donned their Sochi tracksuits and stood in the rain, wind or snow with a welcome smile, their mobile phones at the ready and tried out their English at every opportunity. For the older Russian generations, I sensed it was more of a struggle. The level and speed of service in restaurants and shops is much lower and slower than
I expected, especially in an Olympic city. Price gouging appeared fairly quickly (imagine paying $5 for a glass of tap water?) and ‘the customer is always right’ attitude rarely applied. Cigarettes cost about $4 and smoking is allowed indoors at bars adjoining restaurants. That felt really strange. I was left wondering whether, in time, there will be a generational ideology clash between the teens of Russia today and the lifestyles their grandparents lived. We will see.
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Taskforce takes on Strathfield traffic comprised of self-nominated councillors, a representative from Strathfield Plaza, A PETITION with over Strathfield Chamber of 2000 signatures to keep Commerce and the Korean three hours free parking Business Association of in Strathfield was lodged Strathfield along with www.burwoodscene.com.au with Strathfield Council technical staff and council’s in February following a Traffic Committee. proposal to drop the free According to reports, the parking from three to two Taskforce’s first meeting on hours. 28 February lasted for around It was also at the meeting 40 minutes. Mr Nick Soulos, that Councillor Gulian a property owner in the Vaccari put forward a Strathfield Square area who motion to form a taskforce was representing Strathfield 3 of Commerce at to consider parking and NEWS Chamber traffic issues in the area. the meeting was excluded Members of the taskforce are6 October from2011 the first 20 minutes by Belinda Noonan
KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH THE COMMUNITY 360
PM VISITS YOUTH CENTRE
WESTCONNEX WORRY BRIEFLYS
6 October 2011
Page 12 Page 14
Parking problems in Strathfield’s CBD continue.
An independent fortnightly community newspaper. 100% family owned and operated. Published by Scene Newspapers next issue: Wednesday 2 April 2014 deadline: Wednesday 26 March 2014 Advertising: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 9715 2700 Fax: 9715 2007 Editorial: email@example.com Phone: 9715 2700 Fax: 9715 2007 Post: PO Box A187, Enfield South, NSW 2133 Editor: Belinda Noonan Deputy Editor: Mitchell Jordan Accounts: Aileen Soria Art Director: Kevin Robinson Sales Director: Robin Eggleton Printed by: Rural Press Burwood Scene Daily Online: Webmaster: Cameron Jelinek Burwood Scene is a registered trademark. All material appearing in this newspaper is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced without the consent of the copyright holder. Delivered across four municipalities: Burwood, Strathfield, Canada Bay and Ashfield.
because Council’s lawyer was advising the councillors on some aspect that involves the Taskforce. Sue McDonald, secretary of Strathfield Chamber of Commerce, criticised the brevity of the meeting. “The Taskforce needs to meet longer than 40 minutes each month for any chance to understand the raw data from traffic counts, interpret those statistics and explain them to Taskforce members.” “It would seem logical that you also need an expert who can input data into a Traffic Modelling Program
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19 March 2014
No ‘posh frocks’ for Men’s Shed
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Strathfield Men’s Shed, Pomeroy Street, Homebush. by Belinda Noonan
THE RISE of Men’s Sheds around Australia since the late 1990s as a not-for-profit health initiative for men to socialise and discuss their feelings, plus use their skills has been nothing short of spectacular. From the first Men’s Shed in Lane Cove in 1996, there are now 850 across Australia and the initiative has spread to New Zealand, Ireland, South East Asia and Europe. One thriving example is the Strathfield Men’s Shed in Pomeroy Street, Homebush, which now boasts numerous members and is involved in many community activities including the upcoming Strathfield May Fair. The Strathfield Men’s
Shed is hosting an Open Day on March 22 at its Pomeroy Street premises from 10am until 4pm and is inviting everyone to call in to see what they do. “The BBQ will be fired up and the members are keen to show you some of the work we have been doing,” says President Dan Brem. “Many of our ongoing community projects will be on display or being worked on during the day and we want to show you some of our activities and share some of the stories about how helping others also helps the shed and the members.” The Men’s Shed members are justifiably proud of the work they do for other groups or individuals as well as some of the personal projects that have been completed at the shed.
8 to 2
“Please make some time to drop in to the shed at 28 Pomeroy Street in Homebush, have a chat to the guys, grab a bite to eat and learn about our shed and our work,” Dan suggests. Suitable clothing and shoes should be worn. “Please don’t wear your posh frock,” advises Dan. The Australian Men’s Sheds Association was established in 2007 to represent, support and promote the Men’s Shed Movement and to act as a central hub for information exchange. The Association is funded by the Federal Government to provide initial and ongoing practical support for the development of all Men’s Sheds. They do not provide rehabilitation.
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19 March 2014
Mayor’s Message by Cr John Faker
Follow me on Twitter: @johnfaker
Cr John Faker (Mayor) 9911 9916 email@example.com Cr Tony Doueihi 0437 970 499 firstname.lastname@example.org Cr Sally Deans 0424 022 627 email@example.com Cr Lesley Furneaux-Cook 0408 227 826 firstname.lastname@example.org Cr George Mannah 0448 133 396 email@example.com Cr Justin Taunton 0488 083 108 firstname.lastname@example.org Cr Ernest Wong 0425 691 838 email@example.com
Council Meeting – Monday, 31 March 2014 at 6.00pm in Council Chambers
LOCAL ACHIEVEMENTS CELEBRATED AT INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY
he Fitzroy Centre played host to Council’s International Women’s Day celebrations.
inspirational speech from netball star Caitlin Thwaites, zumba, performances, giveaways and lunch.
There was plenty on offer with community information stalls, an
Thank you to Metro Migrant Resource Centre for their partnership in the event.
Listening to residents’ feedback at a recent street meeting in Burwood
KEEPING OUR AREA CLEAN T
hroughout my tenure as Mayor, I have always taken great pride in our community and remain passionate about making Burwood a proud place for residents. Burwood Council is committed to maintaining the cleanliness of our Town Centres and has recently implemented numerous initiatives and strategies to ensure that Burwood remains an attractive hub of the Inner West. In the recent Council Meeting, I put forward a Mayoral Minute to prohibit the placement of election advertising material on any part of street infrastructure.
I’ve had many residents complain over the past few years about election posters in their streets that have been left up, in some cases, months after an election. Council has to clean up after others and remove these posters at our own expense. These posters not only create problem for residents but discarded ones end up polluting our local environment. I thank residents who have provided feedback to Council on this matter and encourage you to report instances of illegally placed posters in our neighbourhood.
LIBRARY AND COMMUNITY HUB OPENING
Unveiling of the plaque which commemorates the opening
NSW Flames star Caitlin Thwaites, Mayor Faker, Esta PaschalidisChilas and Michael McMahon, General Manager
he Library and Community Hub was officially opened by Mayor Faker last Wednesday.
A time capsule was buried at the front of the library, which will be opened in 50 years time by future
Burwood Council, Level 2, 1–17 Elsie Street, Burwood NSW 2134
9911 9911 www.burwood.nsw.gov.au
generations as a glimpse into present day Burwood. The event was attended by Dr Alex Byrne, Director State Library, various community groups and local students.
19 March 2014
WORK ON DRUMMOYNE WHARF BEGINS
s r o i n e S e Celebrant Bur wood Week i Burwood Library and Community Hub 2 Conder Street, Burwood
Join us at the new Library and Community Hub as we celebrate Seniors Week 2014 with a range of fun activities.
John Sidoti, pictured last year, discussing options for the Drummoyne Wharf with Transport Minister, Gladys Berejiklian.
UPGRADE of the Drummoyne Ferry Wharf will commence twelve months ahead of schedule. Member for Drummoyne, John Sidoti said the much needed work would commence in April 2014 and would take approximately five months to complete. “The upgrade of this wharf has been, by far, the area of most concern to local residents,” he said. “The upgrade repesents an investment of $5 million by the NSW government and will see the existing
wharf replaced by a completely new structure designed to provide passengers with improved access and amenity.” The new-look wharf will comprise a steel floating pontoon, a small concrete entry platform and an aluminium gang way connecting the entry platform to the pontoon. Mr Sidoti said that he would be lobbying the Government to have closed-circuit television installed as part of the upgrade.
“Some local residents have advised my office of anti-social behaviour taking place at the wharf after hours.” The wharf will be closed to ferry services during the construction phase. Passengers will be provided with alternate transport options by bus while the wharf is closed. The Parramatta River Ferry Service will continue to operate to the existing timetable at other wharves on the service.
Monday 24 March 2014 Library and Community Information Session Includes Library and Community Hub tour and age related enquiries. Morning tea will be provided. 10.00am - 12.00pm See a Movie We will be playing the film ‘Quartet’, an award winning film directed by Dustin Hoffman. 1.30pm - 4.30pm Wednesday 26 March 2014 Technology Adventures Surprise the Grandkids! Learn to use an iPad or tablet. Please bring an iPad or tablet if you have one. 10.00am - 12.00pm
Lecture on Knee Osteoarthritis Guest speaker is Dr Milena Simic, a physiotherapist and a lecturer at the University of Sydney. She will talk on the “Train High Eat Low for Osteoarthritis (THE LO)” topic, a clinical trial for people with knee osteoarthritis that is currently being conducted at the University of Sydney. 10.00am - 12.00pm See a Movie We will be playing the film ‘Goddess’, a 2013 Australian film. 1.30pm - 4.30pm Thursday 27 March 2014 Gliding In Life With Yoga Bring a towel and water and wear comfortable clothing. Morning tea will be provided. 10.00am - 11.30pm
Friday 28 March 2014 Shake It Up with Belly Dancing and Pilates Bring a towel and water and wear comfortable clothing. Morning tea will be provided. 11.00am - 12.30pm
Bookings are essential for all activities, to book or for more information please contact Council on 9911 9911 Parking: The newly opened car park is available for use by the public. Residents who have a valid 2P Prime Parking permit receive up to 2 hours free parking within the car park each day provided the permit is clearly displayed.
19 March 2014
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19 March 2014
Youth bonus boosts hope in Sydney’s west AT A MORNING tea in the Auburn Youth Centre hosted by Reid MP Craig Laundy last week, Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced his Job Commitment Bonus starting
on July 1 this year, which will see unemployed youth who are able to get and keep a job being rewarded by up to $4,000. “We ca l l it t he Job Commitment Bonus and what
that policy means is that if you have been unemployed for twelve months or more and you get a job and you keep it for twelve months or more – don’t go back on social security
– there will be a bonus of $2,500 at the end of that year. If you keep the job for two years – don’t go back on social security – there’ll be a further $4,000 made available, because we want to break the culture of unemployment,” Mr Abbott told his young audience and community leaders. For the Burwood-based Inner West Skills Centre (IWSC) CEO, Patricia Frost, Mr Abbott’s announcement is welcome news and comes on top of another announcement from Dooleys Club at Lidcombe, who have pledged over $55,000 to renovate the Youth Centre following an agreement between IWSC, Auburn Diversity Services and the Centre to work together.
“Kids will be able to come to Auburn Youth Centre and do accredited training courses, access counselling, employment services and take part in recreational activities. There is an increasing need for these services,” said Ms Frost. Youth unemployment in Western Sydney prior to September 2013 was just over 9
per cent and now stands at 19.4 per cent IWSC advised. Dooleys Chairman, John Munce says the club is committed to the community, donating $1.8 million in the 2012/13 financial year. “We are here to help our community. There was a need to help young people in the area,” Mr Munce said of the club’s $55,000 donation to renovate the Youth Centre.
Left: Dooleys CEO David Mantle, IWSC CEO Patricia Frost and Dooleys Chairman, John Munce at the Auburn Youth Centre. Right: Prime Minster Tony Abbott and Reid MP, Craig Laundy.
DEPRESSION DOESN’T CHOOSE by Belinda Noonan
“Circumstances are the triggers for depression,” says Catherine Karanja, and as the Program manager at Mission Australia’s Yaralla Cottages in North Strathfield, she is well placed to know. Yaralla Cottages provides temporary accommodation in 24 self-contained single occupancy cottages for around a year for single, unaccompanied women aged 35 and over who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The majority of women who have found themselves homeless through the loss of their job, divorce, domestic violence or difficult circumstances are aged in their 50s, 60s and 70s “Yaralla provides a place and chance for women to transition post-crisis,” explains Catherine. “Standing beside them, so that they can grow and be empowered until they can stand alone.” For Catherine, who previously worked for UNHCR after migrating from Kenya, making a difference to women’s lives is very rewarding.
“I knew inside of me that I wanted to make a little difference and support and empower disadvantaged people.” “There is no doubt that mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety and psychosis are the number one issue. It’s like a small cycle.” Yaralla has established and developed an in-house clinic under volunteer psychologist, Susie Walker, that has been very successful. “We’ve seen women grow, accept that they have mental health issues and go on to improve their lives, be independent and be able to run their own lives in the community,” Catherine says. For Jennifer, or Aunty Jenny as she is known, Yaralla has been ‘like heaven”. A dedicated, professional community worker for 31 years, Jenny had to leave her job, and with that went her security. “Anyone can be homeless if you are living from pay to pay and lose your job,” Jenny explains. “My rent went up after I lost my job and I had to put my 15 year old dog down. It was
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Aunt Jenny (left) with Yaralla Program Manager, Catherine Karanja.
extremely traumatic and I cried for one-week non stop.” “I thought, I am too old for this and couldn’t cope, eventually calling the Homeless hotline and staying at ‘A Woman’s Place’ in Potts Point before coming to Yaralla.” “As soon as I walked in, I thought, this is heaven and there are all these angels,” Jenny said referring to the Yaralla staff and volunteers. “I didn’t realise how unwell I was from stress and the adrenalin from fright and flight.” Jenny suffered a heart attack five days after moving to Yaralla. “Depression, anxiety, panic attacks – the lot. I pulled the blinds down for a month and wanted the world to leave me alone so I could rest. Yralla has given me space to breathe, advice and information.” “I’d love to go back to work. I am intelligent and need to use my brain. Probably with women and children,” Jenny says of her future in a few more months. Yaralla Cottages was established in 1897 by Dame Edith Walker for “gentlewomen in straitened or necessitous circumstances.” It has been run by Mission Australia since 2010.
Come and Meet
Putting your feet first Home and Community Podiatry Service, auspiced by Burwood Council, is for residents of the Ashfield, Burwood, Canada Bay, Canterbury, Leichhardt, Marrickville and Strathfield Local Government Areas. We aim to provide a comprehensive, responsive and flexible podiatry service for the Home and Community Care target group which includes the frail aged, people with disabilities, and their carers. If you think you, a friend or family member may be eligible please call the Podiatry Service on 99 11 99 39 to talk to someone about the service.
Charles Casuscelli RFD MP Member for Strathfield
I look forward to meeting you at one of the following local places: 1. Saturday 5th April at Croydon shops, The Strand, Croydon between 10am and 12pm 2. Saturday 12th April at Flemington, The Crescent, Homebush West between 10am and 12pm If you aren’t able to make it on the day, please feel free to visit me at my Office: 54 Burwood Road, Burwood NSW 2134 (02) 9747 1711
(02) 9747 6054
Authorised by Charles Casuscelli RFD MP. This advertisement was produced using parliamentary entitlements.
19 March 2014
Dr Herrett’s investigation of government policy on gender equity in education from 1975-2010 involved research into a much broader analysis of government policy – federally and at state level – and of the relationship between policy and what actually happens in schools.
Information Morning Wednesday 28 May Secondary Campus
Santa Sabina College has a very distinctive mission, and one that Dr Herrett has lived as a former student, teacher, and parent. The school’s motto ‘Veritas’ compels the community to seek and question, to think critically, and act justly. Dr Herrett is committed to educating the whole person, and to supporting them academically, socially, physically and spiritually. Dr Maree Herrett: BA, GDip Ed, MA, Principal Leadership Course at Harvard Graduate School of Education, PhD Gender Equity Policy and Practice in Australian Education (USyd), FACEL Dr Maree Herrett’s engagement in doctoral study enriched her understanding of educational research, and reinforced her commitment to gender equity.
Friday 30 May Primary Campus Tuesday 12 August Try Year 5
Dr Herrett’s vision for Santa Sabina College involves honouring the past while facing the future. Leading students and staff towards an intelligent use of liberty. Encouraging them to be risk-takers, discerning, scholarly. To reject empty rhetoric and say what we mean. Tell our stories. Celebrate our achievements. Engage with research. Listen, look, learn.
SANTA SABINA PRIVATE BUS
Friday 22 August Primary Campus Book online: ssc.nsw.edu.au
Primary Years Programme Santa Sabina College is thrilled, excited and energised by our status as an IB Candidate School - for the Primary Years Programme, which has commenced in 2014. The College (primary campus) is pursuing authorization as an IB World School. These are schools that share a common philosophy - a commitment to high quality, challenging, international education that Santa Sabina College believes is important for our students. International Mindedness - a sense of Global Citizenship underpins all IB programmes and aligns with our Santa Sabina College Mission. An internationally minded person is a person who demonstrates the attributes of the Learner Profile:
Santa Sabina College runs two private buses, from Hunters Hill and Balmain. Both buses terminate at Santa Maria del Monte, the primary campus of Santa Sabina College. The Hunters Hill bus starts at Hunters Hill collecting students from Gladesville, Tennyson Point, Putney, Ryde, Breakfast Point and Cabarita. The Balmain bus starts at Balmain East, collecting students from Balmain, Rozelle, Lilyfield, Annandale and Leichhardt.
· · · · · · · · · ·
Inquirers Knowledgeable Thinkers Communicators Principled Open-minded Caring Courageous Balanced Reflective
The Learner Profile Attributes have given us a ‘common language’ to communicate our learning and enriches our sense of community.
Santa Sabina College. Independent Catholic School. Co-ed K-4, Girls 5-12. 90 The Boulevarde Strathfield 2135 Phone: 9745 7030 Email: email@example.com www.ssc.nsw.edu.au
19 March 2014
Cooks River naturalisation progress WORK continues on the banks along Cooks River, with NSW Minister for Finance and Services Andrew Constance and Member for Strathfield Charles Casuscelli calling in to inspect work on Sydney Water’s $9 million project to naturalise the river. The naturalisation involves replacing steep, deteriorated concrete panels constructed in the 1940s with more gently sloped river banks stabilised with sandstone and native plants. “The Belfield site, which is upstream of the Second Avenue Bridge, is the first section of the river to be naturalised and is almost complete,” Mr Constance said.
MP Charles Casuscelli, Minister Andrew Constance with representatives from Sydney Water.
“We will be planting over 80,000 local native plants in three sites at Belfield, Campsie and Canterbury. “Included in the design are new pathways, seating, interpretive signage and viewing areas, allowing the community to reconnect with a more natural river.” “ The Cooks River Naturalisation project aims to improve the liveability of the foreshore area by creating attractive, healthy places that the local community can be proud of,” Mr Casuscelli added. “The naturalisation will provide new habitat for birds and aquatic life and will improve the amenity of the river for people to enjoy.”
Dance talent in the spotlight
Council’s rates being assessed by IPART KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH T THE Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) has notified Burwood Council that it has begun its assessment of their application to increase general income above the rate peg from 1 July 2014. Burwood Council has applied for seven consecutive increases including 5.5% in 2014/15, 6.5% in 2015/16, 7.0% in 2016/17 and 7.5% for each year from 2017/18 to 2020/21, all including the annual rate peg. The rate peg in 2014/15 is 2.3%. If approved, the increases would be permanently maintained in Burwood’s rate base. IPART Chairman Dr Peter Boxall said that all applications would be assessed against guidelines published by the Office of Local Government,
Department of Premier and Cabinet.
“The assessment criteria include demonstrating the need for and the purpose of the additional revenue, evidence of community engagement and awareness and an assessment of the impact on affected ratepayers,” Dr Boxall said. “Councils need to provide evidence that their communities are aware of the need for, and extent of, a rate rise.” “They need to show that they have listened to the input they have received, weighed up community concerns against alternatives to the increases sought, and that they have considered the impact on ratepayers. “We are also weighing up the
applications against the costs savings councils are making to reduce the need for increases above the rate peg.” Dr Boxall said that while the primary avenue for community consultation is via each council’s planning processes, interested groups and ratepayers are able to make submissions directly to IPART until 24 March 2014.
Full details about the assessment criteria for Special Variations, details about Burwood Council’s application and how to make submissions can be found on the IPART website www.ipart.nsw.gov.au under Local Government, Fact Sheets & Information Papers. Burwood Council is one of 32 councils across NSW to apply for a special variation.
EMERGING dancers and choreographers can get a leg up by joining a new dance project, Out of the Studio. Sydneyʼs DirtyFeet is a not-for-profit contemporary dance organisation run by artists. DirtyFeet producers Anthea Doropoulos and Sarah Fiddaman usually perform in the company’s works, but this time they are stepping off the stage to make way for new early-career artists to showcase their work. Two choreographers will present first drafts of their dance works at Shopfront C ont e mp or a r y A r t s & Performance in Carlton on 21 and 22 March. Rob McCredie is redeveloping work that he began in DirtyFeet’s Choreographic Lab program, while Sarah-Vyne Vassallo is creating an integrated dance piece with four dancers, two of whom identify themselves as having a disability. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for concession. Book at www.trybooking. com/73551
Westconnex worry over 6 October 2011 Burwood high-rise 2
ACTION group Burwood Community Voice has raised concerns about the controversial infrastructure project, WestConnex bringing more high-rise buildings to Burwood. “Westconnex states that it will improve amenity, public transport and living conditions for local residents but funding the project by further increasing densities in Burwood will be a disaster,” says BCV Councillor, Lesley Furneaux-Cook.
“The only image of the ‘urban rejuvenation’ used in the consultation process shows 10 storey developments not just along Parramatta Road in Burwood but in the blocks behind as well.” Cr Furneaux-Cook believes that Burwood LGA currently has the lowest provision of open space per head of population in Sydney. “Really, Burwood residents have, more than anyone, done their share of increasing housing
stock. It is not fair to ask us to do more,” she added. Burwood Mayor, John Faker, also has his doubts over the Westconnex project. “Traffic and parking are major issues for suburbs in the Inner West. While I welcome infrastructure projects which will ease congestion and improve traffic flow, I have concerns with the proposal put forward by the NSW Government,” he said.
“The State Government hasn’t undertaken adequate consultation with local residents for one of the largest projects to be undertaken in Sydney in recent times.” Cr Faker believes the NSW Government will need to work with local Councils and speak with residents throughout the process to ensure that residents’ needs are taken into consideration and the impact on local housing is “minimal.”
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Meat the veggie challenge Fight disease with fibre
AUSTRALIANS are being asked to swap the snags for tofu and participate in Meat-Free Week from 24-30 March. The national week is dedicated to raising awareness of the amount of meat Australians eat and the impact it has on human health, the environment and the welfare of animals. Participants of Meat-Free Week are sponsored to go without meat, including seafood, for seven days in order to raise funds for one of three charities: Bowel Cancer Australia (health), The Australian Conservation Foundation (environment) and Voiceless, the animal protection institute (animal welfare). Me at-Fre e We ek was launched in 2013 to raise awareness of excessive meat consumption and the animals harmed by factory farming.
“Meat-Free Week quickly became a hot topic, creating debate in both traditional and social media,” said co-founder, Lainie Bracher. “Ultimately, our goal is to get Australians thinking and talking about the amount of meat they eat and how it’s produced. When it comes to our eating habits, a small change can make a huge difference.” During the 2013 campaign, Greens NSW MP Dr John Kaye introduced a motion to the NSW Legislative Council congratulating Meat-Free Week and calling on all members of the Upper House to support this important initiative. Visit www.meatfreeweek.org Get cooking Belinda Jeffery’s Recipes for Meat-Free Week SALT-BAKED POTATOES WITH GUACAMOLE 8 medium-sized baking potatoes
Sea salt A good-sized dollop of butter 1 ⁄3 cup finely chopped spring onions Guacamole: ¼ cup finely chopped red onion 2 small ripe tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped ¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint 1-2 small red or green chillies, very finely chopped 4 ripe avocadoes 2-3 tablespoons fresh lime juice Tabasco sauce Sea salt, to taste Very finely slivered tomato and red onion, herb sprigs (oregano or mint are really nice) Preheat the oven to 200OC. Line an oven tray with baking paper and set it aside. Scrub the potatoes well and shake off the excess water; don’t dry them though as they need to be damp. Prick each one a few times with a fine skewer. Pour some sea salt into a shallow bowl and roll each potato firmly
in it, so the potato has a light coating of salt. (The salt won’t stick all over, but don’t worry, just pat it on as best you can.) Sit the potatoes in the prepared tray then pop it in the oven and bake them for about an hour or until they’re tender when pierced with a fine skewer. While the potatoes are baking, start preparing the guacamole. Mix the onion, tomatoes, mint and chillies in a bowl and set it aside. When the potatoes are ready, take them out of the oven. Using a tea towel to protect your hand, slice a lid off each one and set it aside, then use a teaspoon to carefully scoop out the flesh from the potatoes into a bowl, leaving a shell about 6mm thick. Sit the lids and scooped-out shells back into the tin. Mash the potato flesh with a big dollop of butter, then stir in the spring onions. Cover the bowl loosely to keep the mixture warm while you finish the guacamole. To do this, halve the avocados, scoop out the flesh into a bowl and mash it coarsely. Then stir in the tomato mixture along with the lime juice, a dash of Tabasco sauce and some salt. It’s a good idea to taste the guacamole now and adjust the flavours to suit you – I often add a bit more lime and salt. Stir some of the guacamole into the mashed potato mixture, then pile this back into the potato shells. Leaving the lids off for the time being, return the potatoes to the oven for about 10 minutes to heat through. When they’re ready, take them out and spoon a bit more guacamole on top, then sprinkle it with the tomato and onion slivers. Sit the lids back on top at a jaunty angle and finish them off with herb sprigs. Makes 8.
Play shines a light on privacy by Mitchell Jordan
Actor Luke Holmes
STRATHFIELD actor Luke Holmes has swapped the stage for sound design in the upcoming play, Dancing Naked in the Backyard. The 22-year-old artistic director of Brave New Word, a new, independent company creating original Australian works in collaboration with the writers, insisted that – despite the title – the new play is in fact very family-friendly. “It’s a socially minded play and the title is based around the idea of privacy,” he explained. Set in the quiet Hinton Street, the play focuses on the lives of residents whose lives are turned upside down with the arrival of a CEO who wants to build a six-storey apartment
block in the otherwise-serene neighborhood. Luke’s decision to stay out of the limelight was based on the fact that the play has an older cast. “We were looking for people in their mid-thirties,” he explained. He will return to the stage again in July this year to star in a play called It’s Been a While. “What I like most about theatre is the immediacy; you get a bit of it in live music but having human beings in the same room as you is something you don’t get anywhere else,” Luke said. Dancing Naked in the Backyard runs from 15 to 26 April at Tap Gallery in Darlinghurst. For bookings visit www.bnwtheatre.com.au
EATING plenty of fibre will do more than keep you ‘regular’ – it can also fight back against diseases, new research revealed. One of the findings of the survey was that many Australians believe they are not consuming enough fibre and have limited understanding of its benefits. According to dietitian Shane Landon, chronic disease is rapidly increasing in Australia. “Obesity, heart disease, type two diabetes, stroke and cancer account for almost two thirds of $100 billion expended each year on health. Where conditions are preventable, we clearly each need to take responsibility for our health to reduce this cost burden and we need to start by looking at nutrition,” Mr Landon said. He believes Australians need to consume more fibre-rich plant-based foods and put more focus on fibre. “Amazingly, fibre may also help reduce the risk of asthma with new research from Europe indicating fibre could play a protective role against
the respiratory condition in animals,” he added. Top Five Fibre-boosting tips 1. I nstead of white bread, rice and pasta, go for grain based or wholemeal varieties of bread, and brown or wholemeal varieties of rice and pasta. 2. When buying cereals, look for wholegrains. Choose products with wholegrain ingredients at the beginning of the list (wheat, brown rice, barley, oats, rye, millet, sorghum or triticale etc) and look out for words such as whole, wholegrain, mixed grain, cracked, flaked or kibbled next to the name of the grain. 3. Add legumes such as baked beans, kidney beans, lima beans, soybeans, chickpeas, dried peas and lentils to soups, casseroles, salads and sauces. 4. Sprinkle chopped fresh or dried fruits, wheatgerm or seeds on breakfast cereal. 5. Try a handful of dried fruit and nuts as a snack or add some nuts to a stir-fry.
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19 March 2014
Driven to dangerous distraction
Art overcomes adversity AN HORRENDOUS car accident just minutes from home 14 years ago changed then 24 year-old Alex Zivkovic’s life forever.
Mother and son artists, Smilja and Alex Zivkovic
The young Concord man who had just started his own metal fabrication company suffered severe head and internal injuries, a broken pelvis and leg breaks. “The doctors said if Alex survived, he’d never be the same again,” said his sister, Nenna. Months became years of intensive rehabilitation, with music being an early connection between Alex and his devoted family and parents, Smilja and Milan. “Over the years with the loving help and the determination of our parents, Alex has made a miraculous recovery. He now walks unaided every day, assists around the family home and works two days a week,” said Nenna. Another startling outcome is Alex’s love and
success with oil painting, a new-found passion he shares with his mum, Smilja who is a passionate artist. After some years of coaching from renowned artist John Perkins, Alex and Smilja will fulfil their dream to display and sell their paintings at a special exhibition on March 22 and 23 at
the Concord Function Centre on Majors Bay Rd in Concord. A percentage of their profits will be donated to the Brain Injury Unit at Ryde. Alex has previously raised $6,000 for the unit. For more information, email Nenna at firstname.lastname@example.org
Art for sale at Concord Function Centre March 22 and 23.
See the “country” YouTube version to promote ‘Get Your Hand Off it’.
MOTORISTS in the inner-west are being urged to take a look at the next stage of the NSW Government’s road safety campaign on mobile phone distraction. John Sidoti MP said that talking while driving is a huge road safety issue for Drummoyne. “Very few people can say they’ve never used their mobile phone inappropriately while driving,” Mr Sidoti said. “The truth is that no text, no status update and no email is worth risking your life for.” A new campaign, called ‘Get Your Hand Off It’, has been launched to highlight the problem. “After a hugely successful launch last year of the first video about Derek’s
misadventures on his phone our You Tube clip received more than 620,000 hits,” Mr Sidoti said. “Now we have continued to follow Derek as he crashes his beloved car while Instagramming his latte.” The new videos are: Country – http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=BdFCsRdQmI0 Hip hop – http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=lg8RD6BB34s Rock – http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=frGWfL93o9A
THE BABY GAME BABIES and politicians go hand in hand you would think? Well, at least they do for federal MP, Anthony Albanese who will be hosting a special ceremony, ‘Welcoming the Babies 2014’, on Saturday, 29 March at Ashfield Town Hall. Mr Albanese says the ceremony will be to officially welcome babies from the local area into the Ashfield community. “Every baby who attends will receive a special certificate of welcome, and a gift bag which will also contain useful information about health and community services available to parents, carers and babies,” his spokesperson said.
The baby ceremony is the second that Mr Albanese has held following last year’s inaugural Marrickville Children’s Festival where he officially welcomed new babies. “It was a wonderful occasion and I look forward to this year’s event. The “Welcoming the Babies” ceremony is designed to celebrate new births in our community and also to say “Thank you” to parents and guardians for the important job they do,” he said. Older children in participating families are also welcome to attend. Places are limited to 50 babies. Contact Mr Albanese’s office on 9564 3588, or email email@example.com to participate.
An answer to cancer – we need your support ANZAC Research Institute Medical Appeal The ANZAC Research Institute has launched this public appeal to fund pre-clinical research and the proposed clinical trial of a new treatment for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia, in collaboration with the Haematology Department of Concord, Royal Prince Alfred and Westmead hospitals. Donate O NLINE: www.bendigobank.com.au/foundation/anzacresearch IN PERSON: at any Bendigo Bank BY POST: Send a cheque or money order to Homebush Community Bank, 27 Rochester Street, Homebush NSW 2140
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19 March 2014
FRESH START FOR RETRENCHED WORKERS New support is now on offer for businesses to create new jobs for retrenched workers. The NSW Government will provide a $6,000 payroll tax rebate to businesses in the Strathfield electorate that employ workers who have recently lost their jobs through large-scale restructures. The $6,000 Fresh Start Support payroll tax rebate includes the existing $5,000 rebate already available under the NSW Government’s Jobs Action Plan (JAP). The JAP provides a payroll tax rebate to businesses that employ new workers in new eligible employment – paid in two parts, at 12 months and 24 months after the employee is hired.
Emotional good bye from Amcal Chemist
A $250,000 INTERSECTION upgrade began on March 16 to improve safety for turning vehicles and pedestrians at the intersection of Georges River Road and Burwood Road at Croydon Park. “Roads and Maritime Services will install a right turn arrow to improve safety for southbound traffic turning from Burwood Road and a new pedestrian crossing on the southern side of the intersection across Burwood Road,” Member for Strathfield Mr Casuscelli advised. The upgrade work will be carried out in four night shifts
NEXT VIEW CLUB MEETING Concord West VIEW Club will hold its luncheon meeting at Burwood RSL on March 26. The speaker will be Jane Tracey, who will talk about The Ovarian Cancer Foundation. VIEW Club ladies help to raise money that helps to educate the children of less fortunate families. For all enquirers please ring 97472829. TV RETUNES Some free-to-air digital TV channels will soon be changing frequency in greater Sydney and surrounds. These moves are part of a national retune programme that will free up broadcasting spectrum for new services such as mobile broadband. Retuning is done using the remote. For most systems press the ‘menu’ button on the remote. Look for settings such as ‘channels’ or ‘auto-tuning’ and follow the prompts to retune. A video and 3-step guide to retuning is available on the website www.digitalready.gov.au/retune CARERS INFORMATION Carers NSW is the state-wide peak organisation for carers with an exclusive focus on supporting and advocating for all carers in NSW. For information, support, referral, counselling, or to access one of the many programs delivered by Carers NSW, call the Carer Line 1800 242 636 (9am-5pm weekdays) or visit www.carersnsw.org.au. THE FRIENDLY PLACE TO SHOP
AUTHORS AT ASHFIELD DURING APRIL All talks will be held at 1pm, Level 6 Ashfield Council Chambers, Liverpool Road, Ashfield. April 3: Dr Joanna Penglase will give an illustrated lecture on Baroness Orczy’s classic novel The Scarlet Pimpernel. April 11: Local author Noela Boorman talks about and signs copies of her book Tala Tala. Noela Boorman discovered her father’s diary and was inspired to write this fascinating true story of her parents’ years as Methodist missionaries in Fiji from 1936. Hear about Noela’s experiences researching the book and the struggles and hardships that her parents endured. April 23: Literary lecturer and author Susannah Fullerton will give an illustrated talk on William Shakespeare on the day of the Bard’s 450th birthday.
Elias Toomeh (left) with George and Belinda Bounzanos during their last week at Burwood Amcal Chemist.
AFTER 25 years at Burwood Plaza Amcal Chemist, George Bournazos, his wife Belinda and partner Elias Toomeh are calling it a day, having sold their business to Blooms. An emotional George, who celebrated 25 years in Burwood on March 6, has been thanking his customers one by one.
Night roadworks for Georges River Road
“I have been very blessed to know such a beautiful group of people – both the customers and staff, with whom I’ve shared half my life,” George said. “I want to thank them all for their friendship and support.” George and Belinda plan to take a few months off.
Red Shield Doorknock Appeal not far away
ON THE last Sunday in May students from the meeting the Salvo’s annual Red Shield place at Strathfield Town Hall, Doorknock Appeal raises drive them to and from their millions of dollars nationally. nominated area,” Pete explained. This year the appeal falls on All adults involved on the day Sunday, May 25 and Strathfield will be required to complete organiser, Pete Smith is again and sign all the normal child calling on schools for support. protection forms. All students Pete and many members of receive a free McDonalds Strathfield Rotary Club have voucher and are given fruit and organised the appeal for many bottled water on the day. The NSW Government years. “The Strathfield zone receives has appointed a ClubGrants “As in previous years the great support from Strathfield Category 3 Fund Committee students, in teams of four will Council, Strathfield Rotary and to assess grant applications collect in a pre-determined most importantly the schools and recommend projects for area, and will be supervised and colleges in Strathfield,” Pete by a responsible adult team said. approval by the Government. For more information contact Expressions of interest for leader, probably a Strathfield Rotarian, who willTO collect the Pete Smith on 0412 232 753. THE FRIENDLY PLACE SHOP AND DINE 2013/14 Category 3 grants close on Thursday 10 April and successful projects will be announced mid-year. For more information contact local NSW ends in NSW on Sunday, 6 April 2014, when MPs, John Sidoti or Charles clocks go back one hour at 3:00 am. Casuscelli.
Cash for clubs up for grabs
ORGANISATIONS in the inner-west are being encouraged to lodge applications for grants under the ClubGrants program to help build new community facilities and infrastructure. The ClubGrants Category 3 program will provide grants of between $500,000 and $2 million to community organisations for new and upgraded infrastructure, with $12 million to be allocated statewide in the 2013-14 financial year.
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BACK TO DRUMMOYNE
A step up for road safety THE NSW government has announced a new $15 million commitment to help fund road safety officer positions in local councils across the State, including Strathfield, Burwood and Ashfield. The funding for this program is $5 million dollars a year for three years and will be run by Transport for NSW’s Centre for Road Safety. The Local Government Road Safety program will see council officers receive longer-term funding for projects that address road safety issues specific to their local community.
DRUMMOYNE WATER POLO CLUB is hosting a ‘Back to Drummoyne Day’ on Saturday, March 29 in celebration of 110 years since the club was first formed. 2014 also marks the centenary since Drummoyne won three successive first grade premierships. All past and present players and supporters are invited along for a barbecue and refreshments on the balcony at Drummoye Pool from 4pm to relive many great memories and create some new ones. The Drummoyne Devils Men’s and Women’s National League teams will also take on the Hunter Hurricanes at 6pm and 7.30pm, and everyone is encouraged to wear Devils gear – the more retro, the better – to cheer the Devils along.
NEW BOARD FOR ANZAC CENTENARY A NEW five-member Board has been appointed to oversee the operation of the ANZAC Centenary Public Fund.
Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson said the role of the Board would be to assess projects and make
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recommendations to the Government for project funding from the ANZAC Centenary Public Fund. The Board consists of Gary Humphries as Chair of the ANZAC Centenary Public Fund Board and the Hon Con Sciacca AO as Deputy Chair. Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, AC, AFC (Ret’d), David Tune, Secretary of Finance and Simon
Lewis, Secretary of Veterans’ Affairs. “The ANZAC Centenary Advisory Board’s work is now complete and I will be writing to every outgoing Board member to personally thank them for their contribution, time, ideas and effort in ensuring Australia is well set up to commemorate the centenary,” said Senator Ronaldson.
Some of the projects run by local government address issues including speeding on local roads, drink driving and fatigue. The new $15 million commitment will also allow councils in NSW who can not afford a road safety officer to have the option of applying for one-off road safety projects. The Local Government Road Safety Program is a partnership between the NSW Government and participating local councils throughout NSW. The program currently funds 76 full or part-time road safety officer positions within 91 NSW councils.
Last chance for nurse scholarships SYDNEY Local Health District is urging school leavers and those seeking a career change not to miss out on the current round of scholarships for the Diploma of Nursing, which close on Friday 22 March. The nationally recognised diploma provides students with hands-on experience through clinical placements as part of their training. “Careers in nursing are incredibly rewarding and offer a vast range of experiences from
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Women’s soccer officials course a success ST PAT’S MAKE A RUN FOR IT STUDENTS from St Patrick’s College will be running in the adidas School Fun-Run to raise extra funds for their school. Grant Andrews from St Patrick’s College said the adidas School Fun-Run presents an excellent platform to get students excited about physical activity. “I am ver y proud of the students for getting involved,” Mr Andrews said. Over the last three years the adidas School Fun-Run has helped schools to raise over $9.1 million to purchase computers, books, sporting equipment and other resources. Plus with the additional option to use online fundraising, students can now reach family
and friends interstate or overseas which saw schools increase their overall profit by 16.4 per cent in 2013. A further $230,000 has been donated in school grants by program partner, CUA, through its Community Care initiative - an extension to the adidas School Fun-Run. CUA’s Chief Executive Officer, Chris Whitehead, said they are passionate about supporting local communities and the School Fun-Run program delivers positive outcomes for everyone involved. “We are delighted to be involved again in 2014 and look forward to another successful year,” Mr Whitehead said.
Hot on their heels
More female soccer referees will take charge of local fields.
THE Canterbury District Soccer Association has taken another giant leap forward following its inaugural Referees Course for women and girls only with the assistance of the local Referees Association. 21 female candidates undertook the course at Club Belmore under the guidance of presenter Sarah Ho, a current FIFA and A-League Assistant Referee, and fellow presenters Stephanie Stanyer and Christina Gill. The ageless Jim Skuthorpe was given ‘special leave’ to also present at the inaugural female only Referees Course. Sarah has refereed at every level of the game within the football structure and was able to impart her experience. The latest material from FIFA as presented via video, along with presentations from USA and Canada. “It is about doing our part to grow
participation in the game for females,” said Canterbury District Soccer Referee Association secretary Tony Johnstone. “Having a significant role model such as Sarah headlining the team of presenters was critical to this initiative.” Canterbury District CEO Ian Holmes outlined the importance of the course saying, “It is a joint objective of the Football body and the Referees’ Association to implement a strategy which is consistent with a philosophy of building a strong community focussed approach encouraging and developing greater participation in football by females.” “It is the aim of both bodies to improve the ratio of female match officials to male officials refereeing and running lines in CDSFA competitions.” Further courses for female match officials are being planned.
Greater growth for grassroots sports LOCAL sporting organisations and councils can now apply for NSW Government funding to help build sporting facilities and boost sports participation in their communities. The Sport and Recreation Participation and Facility Program assists grassroots organisations improve local sporting facilities as well as encouraging people to get involved in recreational activities.
Member for Strathfield, Charles Casuscelli, encouraged those within the Strathfield area to apply. “Crucially, this program makes sport more accessible which in turns encourages people from across Strathfield to get active and healthy through sport,” he said. Applications close on 2 April. For more information and to apply, visit www.dsr.nsw.gov.au/grants or phone 131302.
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WALKING groups are in vogue, with the newly established Strathfield group pounding their local footpaths and this is very welcome news to 2013 Senior Australian of the Year, Sue Whitechurch, who helped establish the Heart Foundation Burwood Walking Group some years ago. “I’ve been hoping a Heart Foundation walking group would start up in the Strathfield area for a few years, and we’ve got two now,” said Sue. “Strathfield Council helped St Anne’s register a walking group that started walking last month
and the Strathfield Park walkers have also registered, so residents have a variety of walking times to choose from.” The Burwood group is still going strong and meet at Henley Park in Enfield on Friday mornings from 8.30am for a one hours walk, weather permitting. The next Friday walk is on 21 March, then 28 March. Meet near the Henley Park amenities block in Portland Street for a brisk walk around the park - or you can walk at your own pace for as long, or short, as you want to. For more information email email@example.com or phone Sue on 9747 1953. Burwood walkers meet each Friday at Henley Park.
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OSLO ON THE RISE OSLO IS SUCH A TIRED CITY. My first thoughts upon arriving in the Norwegian capital were merely an echo of what I had already been told by many other Norwegians, Europeans and travellers alike.
It’s easy – and almost forgivable – to see why. For a country characterised by its majestic fjords, magical skies and imposing mountains, Oslo seems, at least on face value, to have little connection with the
Cycling 500km for charity NOT MANY people would undertake a 500 kilometre bike ride, but that’s how John Michel spent last Thursday after he heard about the Kwik Kopy Hands Classic charity ride.
Ashfield Cycles owner John Michel on the ride for Hands Across the Water.
John, the owner of Ashfield Cycles for 36 years, was keen to participate after hearing about the charity. “I was really moved by the stories of the founder Peter Baines at the launch of the ride,” recalled John. “Peter saw first-hand what damage the Thailand tsunami caused, and wanted to help the many orphans it left behind.” Hands Across the Water is a boutique Australian charity that gives at-risk Thai children and their communities a helping hand. “It was a 500 kilomtre bike ride from Cooma to Thredbo. To participate I needed to raise $2,500 for Hands Across the Water. Thanks to some generous friends and customers I reached the target but am keen to now reach $5,000, even after the event. In its first six years, the charity raised more than $7 million without spending a cent of donors’ money on administration or marketing. Donations can be made online at www.handsacrossthewater. org.au/rider/john-michell/
rest of Norway. A multicultural melting pot which last year trumped Tokyo for the title of the most expensive city in the world to live, Oslo has – literally – risen from the ashes after burning down in 1624 and later surviving Nazi occupation to become a cosmopolitan jewel that shines with opportunities. While there is a pervading sense of fatigue or lifelessness to many of the buildings which seem bland and generically European, there is also an undeniable sense (owing to the ever-present buzz of construction) that Oslo has no signs of giving up. It takes a little time, but making the effort to look beyond the super-slick sight of a wealthy city that could become another Zurich is definitely recommended. Oslo, I soon discovered, is an acquired taste. The best way to begin is by taking in its past. The undisputed highlight for any visitor is Frogner Park, home not only to Norway’s largest collection of roses but also the city’s most-visited attraction, Vigeland Sculpture Park, which contains 200 sculptures by Gustav Vigeland. Not only a drawcard for tourists, the park is also a popular choice for locals looking to relax while still remaining in close proximity to the city. In many ways as much a work of art as Vigeland’s sculptures, Oslo Opera House sits on the harbour, striking as a glacier that
Oslo Opera House.
has drifted from a no man’s land and decided to set up home in the city. The marble and glass building, which only opened in 2008, attracts everyone from visitors through to locals wanting to soak up the sun or youth who see the slopes as perfect for skateboarding. Other worthwhile sights include the Nobel Peace Centre and the Holocaust Museum, but to really feel like you are in another country, it’s worth visiting the neighbourhood of Grønland, which is as ethnically diverse as parts of London or Berlin. My first impression of this city was far from accurate. For now, Oslo is too much of a pastiche to be boring. Its striking, if sometimes discordant character is morphing into something that could easily become Europe’s new hot-spot.
One of the 200 pieces in Vigeland Sculpture Park.
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