Star Weekly - Brimbank North West - 11th June 2024

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OAM for Bella’s mum

For most people awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM), a word of congratulations usually follows suit.

But that expression feels misplaced when speaking to Taylors Hill local Allison Burns.

Allison was awarded an OAM on the King’s Birthday in recognition of her service to community health standards through her advocacy in improving safety standards around button batteries.

For Allison, this recognition is one that is bittersweet.

In 2015, Allison’s daughter Bella died at just 14-months-old after a small round battery she swallowed became lodged in her oesophagus.

It has been nine years since the death of her daughter, and with it nine years of advocating for change.

In her work to advocate for improved child safety measures, Allison has led the wave for change and inspired many other child safety advocates across the country, and around the world.

“I’ve been able to successfully campaign and help implement the button battery standards here in Australia which have then been taken overseasandwe’venowseenthemimplemented in the US, and the UK is about to implement them as well. It is incredible to know that we were the first to do this and be part of that and inspire others to follow our footsteps,” she said.

Allison also formed Bella’s Footprints, a Facebook group dedicated to ensuring parents understand the potentially devastating effects of button batteries and how to implement button battery safety practices.

“I do this out of love for my daughter, and to protect every other child,” Allison said.

“I promised Bella when I lost her that I was going to change everything I could that was wrong with button batteries.

“I made it my mission, because had a lot of these measures been in place before she passed she’d probably still be here.”

The news that she had been awarded an OAM came as a surprise to Allison, and she is still unaware of who nominated her.

“It is very overwhelming. There are a lot of emotions behind it,” she said.

“It’sanincredibleawardandI’msohonoured … but it’s also bittersweet, I would never have received it had my daughter not passed away.”

In 2021, Bella’s story captured the hearts and minds of the nation as it was aired on the ABC’s AustralianStory series titled ‘Sisters in Arms’, alongside Queensland mother, Andrea Shoesmith, who had also lost her four-year-old

daughter Summer, to a button battery accident in 2013.

“We had the opportunity to campaign and speak to ministers in Canberra which was again another amazing opportunity, I’d never dreamt of being invited there,” Allison said.

“Being able to share our stories with the people running this country and making them realise how important and urgent this issue was – was crucial.”

For Allison it was a race against the clock to achievelawreformsthatwouldpreventanother death from a button battery.

But for all her efforts in ensuring mandatory button battery standards came into effect in 2022, Allison said the changes took too long.

In 2021, three-year-old girl, Brittney Conway, died in the Gold Coast after swallowing a button battery.

“From the first day I approached the ACCC [Australian Competition and Consumer Commission] to the day the law came into effect was seven years. Considering that each week we have 20 children who end up in the emergency department from a button-related injury, that’s more than 1000 children a year. In seven years that’s 7000 children – we knew it wasonlygoingtobetimebeforewelostanother child, and we did. We lost Brittney.

“That was devastating because we had worked so hard to raise awareness and campaign and try to get button battery issues in peoples faces and we still failed to reach somebody. A family who weren’t aware of the dangers. This is the problem we still face. We have 62 million people in Australia. For us, trying to reach 62 million means education is not something you do once, it’s something you

‘‘ I do this out of love for my daughter, and to protect every other child ’’ - Allison Burns

do everyday.

“We constantly have new parents coming along, new children being born, new doctors beingtrained,nursesandpaediatricians,there’s a constant need for education and awareness.”

Allison said the ultimate end goal is to have button batteries banned for good.

“I personally want these batteries banned. I want battery manufacturers to stop making them or to redesign them so they stop killing children. I won’t stop till that happens,” she said.

“At the moment our next option is to make it as hard as we can for these battery manufacturers to get these products so that either they choose to use a different battery or people stop buying their products.”

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Taylors Hill local, Allison Burns has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM). (Damjan Janevski) 411254_03
■ More OAM honours: Page 3.
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Bachar Houli awarded an OAM

Being recognised this King’s Birthday with a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM), is AltonaNorth’sBacharHouli,anowrenowned figure in AFL history.

He has been awarded the honour for his service to Australian rules football, multiculturalism,andtheIslamiccommunity.

Houli, who has a Lebanese background, was born in Australia and grew up in Melbourne’s west, in Altona North and Tarneit.

He attended high school at Al-Taqwa College in Truganina, and played his junior football with Spotswood, before being called up to play for the Western Jets.

Houli’scareerisanextremelydecoratedone, with 232 career games, three premierships, and an all-Australian jacket. However, his career started in a difficult manner.

After four seasons with Essendon where he played just 26 matches, Houli decided to find a new home, and never looked back.

“Essendon is a great football club and Kevin Sheedy was such a great leader, but unfortunately after he left, the environment wasn’t working for me on the field and it was an opportunity for change,” he said.

“The Richmond coaches and leaders created a culture that encouraged connection and storytelling that enabled me to grow on and off the field and allowed me to get the best out of myself.”

When looking back at his long career, it was the off-field side that he held most dearly.

“There are many great memories, but you can’t go past the relationships you develop being part of a team and the lifelong friendships,” he said.

“Winning the first premiership in 2017 was also pretty special because it meant so much not only to me but the whole community.”

Community is a word that describes Houli best.

He was awarded the Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award in 2020, and the AFL’s Yiooken Award in 2019.

Further, he has been awarded a Victorian Multicultural Commission Award, and an Award for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding by the Australia Day Council.

Although he will always be hailed as a triple premiership hero at the Tigers, his legacy will stem far deeper, with his work with the Bachar Houli Foundation (BHF) supporting more than 35,000 people to date.

“I hope I can be remembered as someone authentic who role modelled his Islamic values on and off the field and played a small role in giving minority communities a sense of belonging,” he said.

Houli said it was in 2011 when he felt the Muslim community was underrepresented across the AFL, and young Muslims in Australia lacked sporting role models, leading him to develop the BHF.

Established in 2012, the BHF is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to develop young leaders within the Muslim community.

“Itwasachallengingtimeforthecommunity and I wanted to provide opportunities and pathways for our young people through sport,” he said.

“My faith has always been the driver for me because it’s a big part of our purpose as Muslim to give back and help others. I have always enjoyed helping people and seeing young people grow.

“Ultimately our biggest purpose is to enable young people to be the best versions of themselves by being physically and mentally healthy, great leaders and proud of their identity.”

He currently runs the Islamic College of Sport in Coburg, but an expansion to Melbourne’swestisintheworks,andexpected to be open from next year.

Softball umpire catches an honour

Hillside resident Leigh Evans is ‘ecstatic’ to receiveaMedaloftheOrderofAustraliaforhis service to softball through umpiring.

But it was never part of his grand plan.

“It’s great to have that recognition for something you do that you’re passionate about …butit’snotsomethingyousetouttoachieve,” Mr Evans said. “Achieving your Australian senior levels, international accreditation and attending world championships are all things you set goals for.”

Mr Evans has an extensive resume. An umpiresince1989,hehasprogressedfromlocal leagues all the way through to the international stage.

Coming from a cricket and football background, Mr Evans wasn’t always involved with softball. He said the journey began when he met his now wife.

“She was very involved with softball at a state level so I went along to watch … then we later had children and they started playing tee-ball and junior ball,” Mr Evans said.

It was a ‘never-ending shortage’ of umpires at his kids’ games that drove Mr Evans to begin umpiring, and he has never looked back since.

“I got on to those junior games to help the kids play and along the way people kept giving me games at senior level and pushing me on to achieve something even more.”

Mr Evans has since become both a Hall of Fame inductee (2015) and a Life Member of Softball Australia (2021).

He has been a national umpire examiner for Softball Australia since 2004 and member of the umpiring committee for Softball Victoria since 1994.

“It takes up a lot of hours when you are involved in all those committees and there are a lot of politics but it’s for the betterment of the sport,” he said.

It’s not just in Australia where Mr Evans has made a difference. He is also umpiring director for Oceania, umpire in chief, umpires’

commissioner, and a member of the rules committee for the World Baseball and Softball Federation.

Outside of governance, he has officiated as chief umpire and deputy umpire for men’s and women’s world championships, Olympic qualifiers, Canada Cup and Japan Cup.

Mr Evans’ invaluable service is driven not only by a love for the game, but the human element of it as well.

“I just enjoy the game itself, but particularly all the philosophies and understandings of where coaches and players come from,” he said.

“They have their own goals to achieve and what stands between them and winning can

sometimes be an umpire’s call.”

When it comes to the softball diamond, invisibility is an umpire’s best friend.

“It’s great when you come off a big game and you’ve managed to really not be in the spectators mind, they are just thinking it was a great game,” Mr Evans said.

But that isn’t always easy when the game is playedatbreakneckspeeds,andcallshavetobe made in the blink of an eye.

“There’s a lot of assertiveness and aggression particularly in the men’s game when they are pitching at 135 km/h underarm.”

An information session for students entering year 11 next year is coming up this Thursday, June 13, at the Australian Islamic Centre in Newport, from 6pm to 8pm.

‘Heart Strings’ at Bowery

The BoilOver Performance Ensemble is inviting the community to join it for an immersive physical storytelling experience at the Bowery Theatre. Its latest production, ‘Heart Strings’, promises to be an evocative journey that explores themes of love, risk, and courage, guaranteed to pull at the audience’s heartstrings.

BoilOver is an inclusive performance ensemble which aims to devise unique performances in a safe, supportive and fun environment. The ensemble creates opportunities for artists to explore their skill and creativity through a theatre setting.

Led by professional arts practitioners, members learn to develop skills and performance works over time.

’Heart Strings’ will take to the stage for its opening night on Thursday, July 18, from 7-7.45pm. The performance will also run on July 19, and 20, from 7-7.45pm.

‘HeartStrings’issupportedbyboththe Sunbury and Cobaw Community Health and Brimbank council’s Community Grants Program.

Tickets range from $20-$25, and can be purchased at au/heart-strings.

The performance is suitable for all ages and the venue ensures accessibility with wheelchair seating and a hearing loop available. Attendees are encouraged to contact the venue with any specific access requirements and can find further information at au/access.

Bachar Houli during his playing days with the Tigers. (AAP Image/Scott Barbour) Leigh Evans, who received OAM. (Damjan Janevski) 411800_02

Pilot lied to wife about deaths

Accused Caroline Springs double murderer Greg Lynn has admitted lying to his wife about his involvement in the deaths of two campers, as he apologised to their families for destroying evidence.

The 57-year-old ex-Jetstar pilot stuck to his story, appearing calm as he was questioned by lawyers from both sides when he testified on Thursday, four weeks into his murder trial.

Almost 100 people filled the Supreme Court in Melbourne for Lynn’s evidence, including his wife Melanie, one of his sons and members of Russell Hill and Carol Clay’s families.

He has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Hill, 74, and Mrs Clay, 73, in the Wonnangatta Valley, in Victoria’s northeast, in March 2020.

Defence barrister Dermot Dann KC said Lynn had offered to plead guilty to a charge of destroying police evidence before the murder trial began.

Lynn admitted he deserved punishment for that charge, as he apologised to the victims’ families.

“All I can say to their families is that I’m very sorry for your suffering,” Lynn told the jury.

“I should be punished for what I did.

“I am innocent of murder.”

Lynn claims Mr Hill threatened to show authorities drone footage of him hunting deer close to their campsite, which led to a struggle over a gun and Mr Hill accidentally shooting Mrs Clay in the head.

Mr Hill then came at him with a knife and Lynn claims he was trying to defend himself when the weapon went into Mr Hill’s chest.

But the prosecution alleges Mr Hill was shot dead by Lynn, who then killed Mrs Clay as she was the only witness to the murder.

two murders.

“It’s a disaster and it would’ve been a disaster if I had’ve gone to police. At the time it seemed the magnitude of disaster was irrelevant,” Lynn said.“Ineverexpectedtobeinthiscourthouse.”

Lynn said he went into crisis mode after both campers died and his training as a pilot helped give him the presence of mind to burn thecampsiteanddisposeofthecouple’sbodies.

“I was a panicked person, I’ve been trained to remain calm. I can manage stress,” he told the jury.

He described a bloodied crime scene, which he had cleaned up using gloves used to clean Jetstar planes.

“There was a large pool of blood on the ground,” Lynn said. “The scene was horrendous.”

Lynn put the two bodies in his car’s trailer and took them to the remote bushland of the Union Spur track, returning in November 2020 to burn the remains.

He took cash from Mr Hill’s wallet to pay for fuel, as he didn’t want his credit card to be detected.

“To be honest, my aim was to disappear,” he said.

Lynn was grilled for almost two hours by Mr Porceddu, who said he had more than a year to come up with his story before his arrest in November 2021.

He asked if Lynn admitted to his wife his involvement in the deaths after they were bugged by police while watching a 60 Minutes program about the missing campers.

MrHillhadtakenashotgunandammunition from Lynn’s car, and he tried to get the gun back but four to five shots went off, with one hitting the side mirror and killing Mrs Clay, he claimed.

Lynn told the jury on Thursday that after the two campers died, he panicked as he realised he could lose his career as a Jetstar pilot over improper gun storage.

The accused murderer feared he would lose his Aviation Security Identification Card over impropergunstorage,causing“severefinancial hardship” to his wife and children.

But under cross-examination by prosecutor Daniel Porceddu, Lynn admitted “things are worse for me now“ as he was on trial for the

“I lied to her, said I had nothing to do with it,” Lynn replied.

“It would be involving her in a problem that was nothing to do with her – I lied to my wife to protect her.”

The jury was sent away until Tuesday when the prosecution will begin closing their case.

4 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 NEWS STARWEEKLY.COM.AU 2024 12 July! 12695341-ET24-24
Greg Lynn said he lied to his wife Melanie (centre) to protect her. (AAP image/James Ross)
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Join Drago Ivan Milinkovi for a free comedy show on June 18.

(Damjan Janevski) 411682_06

Free dose of laughter

This June, get ready for a night of laughs as Double Deuce Comedy returns.

The best part? Entry to this comedy show is absolutely free, with 20 comedians ready to spread laughter throughout the night.

Local stand-up comedian Drago Ivan Milinkovi said the comedy night has grown since its start in early 2023.

“It’s all about engaging with the community and offering a fun, free night out,” he said.

“Entertainment needs to come back to the west. I hear stories from people growing up in the west saying that there was always something to do here. So we’re trying to offer laughs for free. The cost of living is tight and this is a free evening featuring 20 comedians from professionals to up and comers.”

Milinkovi’s passion for the local area shines through as he talks about his own experiences growing up in St. Albans. He believes that

events like this show there’s more to life than just a 9-5 job, and anyone can make a name for themselves.

“It’s like an expectation of someone from the west that they just get a normal 9-5 job, but that doesn’t need to be an overall standard being here. I grew up in the west all my life, I took that chance, and it proves someone here can make a name for themselves. My overall mission is that there is more to life… and to push the envelope. For me it all starts with comedy, come down and watch it for free.”

After the scheduled acts, there will be a sign-up list for any aspiring comedians who want to take the stage.

The free comedy show will take place on Tuesday, June 18, at Double Deuce Billiards, BarandCafeinSunshineNorth,from8-10pm.

Hannah Hammoud

Coffee & Cruising at Lifestyle Woodlea

Learn about exciting upcoming cruises and travel options from Flight Centre, Trafalgar, CostSaver and Insight Vacations & Norwegian Cruise Lines. Bring your friends, stay for morning tea and explore our brand-new Clubhouse and incredible homes.

When: Tuesday, 25th June, 10am-2pm

Where: Lifestyle Woodlea, 17 Tranquil Road, Aintree Scan the QR code to RSVP or call 1300 50


Art funding

Creative Brimbank has opened up the next round of Art Spaces Activation Partnership Funding. With up to $3000 funding available, artists and arts practitioners working across any arts disciplines can apply for art projects that engage the Brimbank community. Expressions of interest closes July 1, at 5pm. Details: https://

Apply for school grants

Victorian government schools can now apply for grants to help fund small scale projects as part of the state government’s new Capital Works Fund (CWF). Schools can apply for grants of up to $500,000 depending on the size of the project. Details: https://shorturl. at/43psS

Mental health grants

Applications have opened for Australia Post’s 2024 Community Grants program. This year, grants of up to $10,000 will be given to support projects which have the primary purpose of improving mental health and wellbeing in local communities. Organisations interested in applying are encouraged to review the Community Grant guidelines carefully to check eligibility requirements, with eligible community organisations able to apply until 11.59pm on July 1. Details:



Brimbank & North West Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly

Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY 7 STARWEEKLY.COM.AU NEWS CONTACT US PHONE \ 03 8318 5777 LOCATION \ Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042 DISTRIBUTION \ 1300 656 678 ADVERTISING GENERAL SALES INQUIRIES CLASSIFIEDS \ 1300 666 808 EMAIL \ GENERAL REAL ESTATE INQUIRIES EDITORIAL GENERAL EDITORIAL INQUIRIES COMMUNITY CALENDAR ENTRIES Published by MMP Star Pty Ltd ACN 168 220 399 Head Office Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042 Publisher/Managing Director, Paul Thomas All material is copyright to MMP Star Pty Ltd. Responsibility for election comment is accepted by Paul Thomas. All significant errors will be corrected as quickly as possible. Distribution numbers, areas and coverage are estimates only. For our terms and conditions please visit STARWEEKLY.COM.AU
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Carving out creativity

On June 6, locals gathered at the Sunshine Library for a linoprinting workshop led by the talented Sally Walshe, also known as Lady Mohawk.

With nearly 15 years of printmaking experience, Sally guided participants through the art of linocut printmaking.

During the three-hour session, attendees learned various techniques, from design and transferring to carving, inking, and printing their own original pieces. By the end of the workshop, everyone left with their unique carved linocuts and several linoprints to show for their efforts.

This event was part of the INfuse Artist Networking program, which aims to connect creative individuals in the west, offering a platform for networking, sharing ideas, professionaldevelopment,andmutualsupport.

Star Weekly photographer Damjan Janevski took a trip to the Sunshine Library to capture the creativity on show.

For those interested in joining the INfuse network, they can reach out via email at

Star Weekly seeks an enthusiastic Full or Part Time sales executive to work across our print, digital, social and online platforms.

Star Weekly is an independently owned company which prides itself on its long history of community experience but also its investment in the future.

The successful applicant will need to possess good people skills to enable them to meet with local businesses to sell solutions through our advertising platforms to help promote their business.

Plating up Persian heritage

Applicants will need their own reliable vehicle for which we will provide an allowance.

The position is salaried, plus we offer an open ended commission scheme.

Send your application letter and resume to: Advertising Sales Manager, Mandy Clark

HamedAllahyari’sSunshineCafe,‘SalamaTea’, employs people who are newly arrived in Australia as part of a personal mission to help them establish connections and support them with employment and training.

Hamed arrived in Australia in 2012 as an asylum seeker after fleeing Iran, and has since called Melbourne home. His life revolves around food and sharing his Persian cultural and culinary heritage with the community.

Recently, Hamed was featured in episode threeoftheABCshow,‘Extra-OrdinaryThings’. Journalist Tony Armstrong travels across the country to meet Aussies with ordinary things that hold extra-ordinary stories.

For Hamed, his ordinary thing was a Persian zinc plate that was sent to him by his father back home in Iran.

Hamed’s father spent six hours driving across Iran to source the zinc plate – an item

that is often used in Iran to cook traditional foods on the stovetop and then served and eaten straight from the plate.

At Hamed’s cafe, the zinc plate is used to cook the humble Persian omelette, where he strives to put in the same love and care that his mum used to.

“Cooking on this plate I feel like I’m presenting one of the most cultural dish, which [is] not really big to many Iranians. It’s just an omelette, a street food omelette. But to me, to cook in the zinc plate, to serve it in the same plate, for me, it’s big,” Hamed shared in the episode.

“ This is like sharing my culture, and I love that. I think it’s [the] journey of my life. Maybe it has a sad story, but at the end I’m happy.”

To watch Hamed’s episode, visit: https://

Hannah Hammoud SalamaTea cafe owner Hamed Allahyari with his zinc plate. (Damjan Janevski) 411886_04 Cimen Suphioglu shows off her work of art. Ari, 14, tried her hand at linoprinting. The linoprinting workshop was hosted by popular local artist Lady Mohawk. Fiona Kerr, Linda Fry (above right) and Ebony Rattle (right) let their creativity flow. (Pictures: Damjan Janevski) 410893 Lady Mohawk took the budding artists through the stages of linoprinting. Right: Steph Cox focuses in.


Luba Grigorovitch MP is a dynamic force in politics, embodying resilience and passion in every endeavor. As a dedicated representative, she channels her energy towards championing the concerns closest to her constituents’ hearts. Ms Grigorovitch’s leadership is marked by a unique blend of empathy and tenacity, ensuring that the voices of her communityresonateinthecorridorsofpower. Her unwavering commitment to social justice, education, and community empowerment reflects a profound understanding of the issues that matter. Luba Grigorovitch MP stands as a beacon of positive change, inspiring confidence in her ability to navigate the complexities of governance and and shape

Come and enjoy all that Green Gully Soccer Club has to offer! Visit the bistro for delicious meals. Enjoy a parma on Wednesdays or steak on Thursdays. Join us for Members Night on Wednesdays, participate in bingo on Thursday nights, or take advantage of Happy Hour on Fridays from 6pm to 8 pm. We have something for everyone!

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David Ettershank

I have raised in Parliament on multiple occasions the woeful state of the bus network in the west. Our network is nonsensical, inefficient and unreliable. Recent customer surveys show only 25 per cent of commuters are satisfied with current bus services, with the top two complaints being frequency of services and indirect routes. Transport experts have shown that a reconfigured bus network could fix both of these problems. For an investment of $25 million, we could double the number of patrons and take 40,000 cars off the roads in Melbourne’s west every day. Go to to learn more.

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Family’s twin fight for Kiwi rights

Tarneit’s Mackay family moved from New Zealand to Australia 20 years ago. The family is now fighting for the right for their twin daughters, who were born in Australia, to access the NDIS and disability support pension, Cade Lucas reports.

July 1, 2023, was a bittersweet moment for Tarneit’s Angela Mackay.

Originally from Auckland, Angela, her husband, Jeremy, and then 10-year-old daughter, Stella, emigrated to Australia in 2004 and have lived here ever since.

However, like scores of others from across the Tasman, the Mackays were disadvantaged by the 2001 law passed by the then Howard government which established a new Special Category visa for New Zealanders in Australia, allowing them stay, but restricting their access to some government payments and obtaining citizenship without first being granted permanent residency.

But at the start of the last financial year, the “direct pathway to citizenship” changes brokered by Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and his then New Zealand counterpart, Chris Hipkins, came into effect, allowing the 350,000 Kiwis living in Australia to become citizens after four years of residency. The right to vote and access to government benefits were among the other rights Australian-based Kiwi’s now had access to that they previously didn’t.

Well, not quite.

‘‘ A lot of Kiwis will be in our same situation and don’t even realise it, and won’t until they need help ’’ - Angela Mackay

While the path to citizenship for New Zealanders has been made quicker and easier, thesocalled‘standdown’periodsrequiredfor them access to some government services and welfare payments, remain in place.

Effectively waiting periods introduced as a means to collect enough taxes from people in order to offset possible future social security claims, stand downs can range from one to 10 years depending on the type of payment being sought.

For New Zealanders like Angela , who’ve spent years working and paying taxes in Australia as permanent residents before becoming citizens, the stand downs can come as a particularly rude shock.

Knowing that shock was coming for many of her fellow Kiwi’s tempered Angela’s joy on July 1 last year.

“A lot of Kiwis will be in our same situation and don’t even realise it, and won’t until they need help,” she said.

“This goes against the equality and fairness that Australia prides itself on by looking after its citizens.”

Angela is speaking from experience.

While Jeremy and Stella, are now in the process of becoming Australian citizens and Angela - due to having lived here in the 1980’s and having a return residency visa –wasabletobecomeacitizeninOctober2023, there are two other members of the Mackay family who became Australian citizens long before any of them.

“In 2007 we had identical twins born in Australia with a rare chromosome deletion, they both have a intellectual disability,” said Angela of her daughters Kyah and Luca, who as a result of their birthplace, became Australian citizens upon turning 10.

But as Angela explains, this was no cause for celebration.

“Because of our immigration status (both being Kiwis) our children were not granted citizenship at birth. Although my husband paid taxes and paid taxes into the NDIS our children could not access the NDIS until 10 years old as they were not citizens, missing out on years of valuable therapy.”

Turning 17 later this month, Kyah and Luca have been citizens and had access to the

NDIS for seven years and have attended Warringa Park Specialist School’s Werribee South campus since they were in prep.

Yet rather than being a figment of the past, standdown periods blocking their access to much needed public support is now a more acute problem for the Mackay twins than ever before.

“They’re now finishing their schooling years so we have applied for the disability pension,” said Angela.

“Both girls qualify under the medical side but were declined on residency status.”

Access to the disability support pension (DSP) still requires a 10-year stand down period from the moment citizenship is granted.

Despite being Australian born and citizens for the best part of a decade, Kyah and Luca

still fall three years short of eligibility.

“This is ridiculous,” said their mother who is worried about what the twins will do without full-time education, but unable to perform full-time work.

“When my girls finish school they can possibly get the jobseeker (which has a shorter stand down period). If they do get the jobseeker, they will have to actively look for full-time employment and report every two weeks which is ridiculous when having a learning disability. Worse case they will get nothing and myself and my hubby will have to fully support them until the age of 20,” she said.

The Mackay’s might be an extreme case, but

they’re far from the only Kiwi’s who’ve spent years living and working across the ‘ditch’, but who’ve found their rights don’t match their contribution.

Erina Morunga is an Adelaide-based migration agent who said ex-pat Kiwi’s make up an increasing amount of her business.

“Over the past seven years, most of our work has focused on assisting New Zealanders who are eager to become Australian citizens because they or their families lack full rights, privileges, and entitlements – despite paying full taxes for one or two decades,” said Erina who has assisted the Mackay’s.

She said the 10-year stand down period for access to the DSP should be scrapped and that more consideration should be given to the needs of long-term ex-pats.

“These should be taking into account the unfair legislation that have occurred over the past two to three decades which has unilaterallydisadvantagedallNewZealanders who came after February 26, 2001, including those who have been tax-paying, law-abiding, community-driven, English-speaking, often skilled, long-term residents of Australia,” Erina said, pointing out that those who paid thousands of dollars in visa charges under the old scheme, should be reimbursed.

The Mackay’s case has been referred to Federal NDIS Minister Bill Shorten and the Department of Social Services (DSS).

A spokesperson for the DSS said Australia’s social security system was a non-contributory, residence-based system and to qualify for the DSP, a person must generally have resided in Australiaasacitizenorpermanentvisaholder for 10 years and at least five continuously.

The spokesperson said anyone who meets the residence, disability/early intervention and age criteria under the NDIS Act will receive supports through the NDIS.

NZ immigrant Angela Mackay says a loophole has meant her disabled twin daughters Kyah and Luca (pictured left) have been denied a disability pension despite being born in Australia and being Australian citizens. (Damjan Janevski) 404992_01 Immigration agent Erina Morunga says ex-pat New Zealanders make up an increasing amount of her work. (Pictures: Supplied)

More scholarships offered at top sports academy

Victoria’s only government funded school sports academy will open the door for more students through the introduction of 26 new scholarships in 2025.

Maribyrnong Sports Academy usually does an intake of students when they enter year 7, with a very small number of scholarships for students in the higher grades each year to fill spots.

The academy from next year will introduce 26 scholarships which will be awarded to athletes going into year 9.

The academy provides a genuine high-performance environment for student-athletes to thrive in both sport and education, and achieve their dream to compete at an elite level.

Principal Mark McAllion said it was an opportunity to bring in more children at an older age, when they’ve got a better understanding of their talent.

“Obviously with talent ID, it’s difficult at age 11 and 12,” he said.

“So an actual couple of extra years, gives us more information to make better informed decisions on the students that are fortunate enough to get the opportunity to come here on scholarship.

“So what we’ve been able to do is open up a whole class of year 9 as a whole class at once. It’s really exciting at that age.”

The academy has coaches for 14 different sports and also accepts athletes from outside of those sports.

The program includes high performance coaching, strength and conditioning, physiotherapy and injury management, performance psychology, nutrition, and academic and personal mentoring.

Vice-principal Tayatea Mackenzie said they normally get about 300 applications for year 7, while they might have another 200-300

applicants for any open gaps across the rest of the year levels.

There will be no limit on how many students there are per sport in the new group, with selection based on the best athletes and then meeting academic and character criteria.

Mr McAllion said in some sports the junior pathway hasn’t started by the time children are ready to start school and some haven’t found their talent.

He said it also gives an opportunity to those interested who had missed out in year 7 to

apply again.

Ms Mackenzie said when they speak to the kids that came in later, some hadn’t even started playing their preferred sport when they were 11 or 12.

She said that previously the academy had knocked back great kids just because they don’t have space for them, despite thinking they are a good fit and this will help give some of those students opportunities later on.

Among past students to join the academy in year 9 include Port Adelaide star Zac Butters,

A-League player Seb Pasquali, badminton player Gronya Somerville, athlete Celeste Mucci and Reba Stewart who represented Australia at the Olympics in taekwondo.

Ms Mackenzie said they are targeting that 50 per cent of all scholarships go to females.

Mr McAllion said the environment is an individual development model.

“It’s not about us winning school championships with the kids we bring in here. It’s actually what we can do for that individual to get to their highest level.”

Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY 11
IN FOCUS Advertising feature
Maribyrnong Sports Academy will introduce new scholarships for year 9s.

Reward for effort for local clinic

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Last year, Western Region Health was awarded the Business of the Year Award as part of the City of Melton Business Excellence Awards.

Owner and director Jade Scott, who started the clinic 21 years ago, says people are more aware of her business as a result.

“Winning gave us greater exposure across a multitude of other areas,” she said.

“It also showed how embedded we are in the greater community – we are not just in healthcare, we are a community focused business and that is why winning Business of the Year meant so much.”

Ms Scott said the spotlight was a long overdue nod to the staff at Western Region Health, which is made up of osteopaths, physiotherapists, massage therapists, and clinicians. “You’re only as good as your people, so it was a great recognition of the amazing people that I have around me,” she said.

“You don’t win awards like this on your own, so it was a great testament to our team and it meant a lot to them because it was recognition of going above and beyond.”

The award also allowed the clinic to emphasise the morals that drive the business, including diversity and quality.

“We were able to showcase our core values at a community level,” Ms Scott said.

Ms Scott said she found the application process ‘quite cathartic’ and ‘therapeutic’.

“It was a really lovely walk down memory lane for me. It’s nice to be able to look back and take some time to be proud of how far you’ve come as a business,” she said.

“The process is a great tool of reflection

regardless of whether you win or lose.”

deserve to be commended for their efforts.

Businesses within the City of Melton can nominate themselves or others they believe

The awards provide an opportunity for traders of all sizes to showcase their strengths and celebrate what sets them apart. Applications are open and close midnight Friday, July 12. Councillors Lara

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Protest for ‘fair pay’ continues

For the second consecutive week, Victoria University (VU) staff launched strike action over workloads, calling for a “fair pay rise”.

Victoria University staff launched a half day strike action on Wednesday, June 5, following a protest rally the week before on May 28, targeting university management over what they’ve described as a lack of a fair pay rise.

The second strike on June 5, took place from noon to midnight across all VU campuses, as anger continues to rise over what staff have declared as a “failure” from the university to give staff a fair pay rise and safe workloads.

The National Tertiary Education Union

(NTEU) said despite receiving the union’s claims more than a year ago, VU management has failed to make a “concrete offer” on pay.

NTEU said unmanageable workloads are a major sticking point, with VU’s teaching model and recent job cuts that resulted in almost 20 per cent of staff leaving, putting enormous pressure on remaining staff.

VU’s “block model” teaches students one semester-length subject in four weeks at a time rather than multiple units concurrently like at every other university in Australia.

NTEU VU branch president Brandy Cochrane said instead of trying to resolve the issues, VU management is, “playing for time and not sending anyone with real

decision-making power to talk about staff’s reasonable claims”.

“Enough is enough. We expected VU management to come to the table – instead they’ve launched a hard-line attack, increasing already excessive workloads to spread teaching from 36 weeks per year to 40,” Mr Cochrane said.

“Staff have endured hundreds of colleagues being made redundant, an unsafe teaching model and a cost-of-living crisis, yet management clearly thinks they don’t deserve to be paid fairly”.

A Victoria University spokesperson said it is incorrect to suggest VU is “not serious” about the bargaining process and a pay offer.

Powderkeg Players’ peachy show

The Powderkeg Players Youth Theatre, also known as Sunshine Community Theatre, is set to bring the Roald Dahl classic, ‘James and the Giant Peach’, to life this June.

Earlier this year, the theatre group made a significant move from its long-standing home in North Sunshine, with the help of Brimbank council. The council has installed upgraded lighting and blinds at the St Albans Senior Citizens Centre, at the corner of William and Alfrieda streets.

The performance features about 20 local young talents, including a few who are young at heart, and will retell the famous story of the young orphan James who spills magic beans on the roots of a dead peach tree, only to begin an adventure across the sea.

‘‘ I’ve had a blast with these kids creating all the props and puppets for this show ’’ - Donna Prince

Directed by award-winning puppet designer, educator, and local artist Donna Prince, the show will include a life-size giant peach which inflates before the eyes of the audience.

“I’ve fallen in love with Roald Dahl’s wonderful story,” Prince said.

“We’re having so much fun recreating the inside of the giant peach with a cast full of fun insect characters. I’ve had a blast with these kids creating all the props and puppets for this show and we can’t wait for the audience to see it.”

Powderkeg Players president Stephen Andrews said Powderkeg Players began life in the 1970’s at the former explosives factory, now home to Cairnlea.

“After two decades in North Sunshine, we’re moving back to St Albans. We are thrilled to

Eight-year-old talents Jasper and Cassidy with the giant peach. (Stephen

work with the St Albans Senior Citizens in using their wonderful venue for community theatre productions, hopefully for many years to come,” he said.

The performances are scheduled for four matinee shows, beginning at 2pm on Saturday, June 22, running across two weekends, along

with an evening show on Friday, June 28, at 7pm.

Tickets are available at www. or by contacting 0407 802 165.

“In March, all staff colleagues were given a 4 per cent salary increase in recognition of their contribution and ongoing commitment to?putting our students at the heart of everything we do,” the spokesperson said.

“We have always maintained a regular leadership presence at the bargaining table, as VU is very keen to conclude bargaining?without delay, including further competitive salary increases?and new leave entitlements for staff.

“VU is proud of our award-winning and evolving VU Block Model. It is central to the ongoing success of all our students, and as a responsible employer, we are committed to supporting the staff who deliver it.”?

A director and his two companies operating in Brooklyn and Great Western will pay more than $45,000 in fines and costs after charges that they failed to comply with a host of regulatory notices and deposit of industrial waste by burning were proven by the environmental protection authority (EPA).

NicholasLimbournewasfoundtohave illegally deposited industrial waste by burning at his property in Great Western and fined $20,000 without conviction. Mr Limbourne was fined a further $5000 as part of an aggregate sentence for charges related to the same conduct as the companies of which he is a sole director.

Limbourne Group Pty Ltd was ordered to pay a $5000 fine and $7081 in EPA costs after it failed to comply with notices requiring the preparation of a compliant emergency management plan andfireriskassessment,andtomakesafe non-compliant piles of combustible and recyclablewasteatitsBrooklynpremises.

Limbourne Group further failed to comply with a prohibition notice requiring no further waste be received at the premises until compliance with the separation and dimensions of stockpiles of waste was achieved.

Tombell Limsed Pty Ltd was also found to have not complied with an environmental action notice and was fined $3000 and ordered to pay $5331 in costs to EPA. Tombell Limsed was also ordered to remove all remaining industrial waste from the affected premises on Sandy Creek Road in Great Western and dispose of it lawfully by November 8.

Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY 13 STARWEEKLY.COM.AU NEWS Keeping up to date with your local news has never been so easy... Simplyregistertodayandgetourlatest news articlesandDigital EditionsinyourinboxforFREE SenttoyourinboxeveryTuesday 12665718-SN08-24
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WANT YOUR EVENT LISTED? Community Calendar is made available free of charge to not-for-profit organisations to keep the public informed of special events and activities. Send item details to Star Weekly Community Calendar, Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042, or email to by 9am Wednesday the week prior to publication

Men’s Health Week

From June 11-16, Brimbank council is hosting a range of activities to mark Men’s Health Week, where residents can participate in events including cooking classes, exercise sessions, social gatherings, family activities, and art workshops across various locations in Brimbank. To explore the events on offer visit:


All abilities workshops

Join the Duke Street Community House for free workshops filled with fun and engaging activities and informative sessions alongside a supportive and inclusive community. Workshops range from nutrition, art therapy, wellness and fitness, financial support, mental health and sustainable planting. Workshops are held weekly on Thursdays, from 10am-12.15pm, until June 20.

Women’s only conversation English

Duke Street Community House is inviting locals to make friends, learn new skills and practice English in this fun and free women’s social group. Tuesdays during school terms 9.30am-noon, at Duke Street Community House, 27 Duke Street, Sunshine.

■ 9311 9973, or


Duke Street Community House is inviting locals to a free adult social opportunity to get together and be creative. Learn a new craft or bring along your own craft projects. Tuesdays during school terms, 12.30-2.30pm, at the Duke Street Community House, 27 Duke Street, Sunshine.

■ 9311 9973, or

Sunshine Heights Junior Soccer Club

The club is on the lookout for more girls to join its junior soccer teams from ages under-8s through to under-14. If you are keen to join, training is held every Tuesday and Thursday at Castley Reserve from 5.30pm – except for under 14 girls who train from 6.30pm.


Girl Guides

Brimbank District Girl Guides is inviting locals to come and try guides before committing to join. Girls aged 5-18 and adults are invited to enjoy the fun and friendship of guiding.

■ Carolyn, 0418 536 084

Sunshine Repair Cafe

Do you enjoy fixing things or have skills in mending clothing and textiles? Kororoit Neighbourhood House is looking for volunteer repairers for the newly launched Repair Café in Brimbank. Events happen once a month and are an opportunity to meet others in the community and share your skills while helping fix broken household items.

■, or 0413 434 082

Al-Anon Family Groups

Al-Anon Family Groups is offering help and hope to anyone living in an unhappy home because a loved one drinks too much. There are no contracts to sign, just a voluntary donation to cover room rental. Confidentiality is protected. Confidential meetings held at the Sydenham Neighbourhood Centre (rear of library) every Wednesday, from 1-2.30pm. New members welcome. No appointment necessary. The group is also offering two introductory Alateen meetings in the July school holidays on July 3, and 10, at the

This week’s photographer’s choice picture is of comedian Deborah Barrese dressed up as ‘Carmen’, a character from her upcoming live comedy. (Damjan Janevski) 410912_01

same time as the Al-Anon meeting in an adjacent room. Facilitated by two certified (WWCC) and experienced Al-Anon members. Parents are invited to bring their teens and join the adult meeting.

Card games

Love playing the card game 500? Card games are played every Monday, from 7-10pm, at the Sunshine RSL offices, 99 Dickson Street, Sunshine.

■ Leisa, 0425 768 808

Keilor Day View Club

The Keilor Day View Club meets at 11am on the first Thursday of each month at Green Gully Soccer Club, Green Gully Reserve, Club House Place, Keilor Downs. The club is inviting locals to come along and enjoy a meal and fun with a friendly group of ladies.

■ Robyn, 0425 387 880

Deer Park Lions Club

Deer Park Lions Club is looking for new members. It holds dinner meetings on the first Wednesday of every month at the Deer Park Senior Citizens Club, 119 Station Road, Deer Park.

■ Michael, 0417 307 572

Sunshine Community Brass

Sunshine Community Brass is looking for trumpet and percussion players to join its vibrant band of musicians. With more than 90 years of history, the band rehearses

at 45 Furlong Road, North Sunshine, on Tuesdays, from 7.30pm.

■ Andrew, 0419 444 620

Palliative volunteers needed Mercy Palliative Care is looking for volunteers to visit palliative care patients in their homes to offer social support.

■ 9313 5700 or

St Albans senior citizens

St Albans Senior Citizens group meet at the centre at the corner of Alfrieda and William streets, St Albans, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, from 9am-2pm. Annual membership: $10. Cost: $1 entry on attendance day.

■ Roma, 0435 991 064

Seniors lunch

Deer Park Branch of National Seniors Australia hosts a lunch on the third Friday of each month at different venues. The group also arranges activities each month, sometimes to the theatre, morning melodies, train or bus trip. The group also holds a general meeting at The Club in Caroline Springs on the first Wednesday of every month at 1.30pm. Locals are invited to join in for lunch or just attend the meeting and make new friends.

■ Pamela,

Caroline Springs Rotary

The Rotary Club of Caroline Springs is

inviting new guests to join its meetings in person or via Zoom. Meetings are held every Wednesday at the Western Emergency Relief Network in Ravenhall, from 7pm.


Chatty Cafe Melton

Are you feeling lonely, isolated or just wanting to make some new friends? If so, Chatty Cafe is for you. The group meets on Friday mornings at 10am for delicious free coffee from Latin foods and wines at 10 Wallace Square, Melton.

■ groups/352071857283331

Women’s Support Group

Women’s Support Group Melton is for any women who feel they would like to attend a peer support group which is relaxed, friendly and non-judgemental. The group meets weekly at 1pm on Mondays (except for public holidays) at Djerriwarrh Neighbourhood House, 239 Station Road, Melton. The group can discuss most subjects that may be of help.


Melton Ladies Probus Meets from 10am on the second Wednesday of each month at Melton Country Club on Reserve Road, Melton. All visitors are welcome.

■ Dianne, 9743 7446


A journey of Vietnamese history

Embark on a cultural journey with Bach Viet Danceastheypresent‘TheEmperorCity(From Past to Present)’, a captivating performance showcasing the rich history and traditions of the imperial city of Hue in central Vietnam.

This cultural show will feature a blend of traditional court music, contemporary music, and poetry recitations, brought to life through costumes, singing, and traditional dance. DiTran,thepassionateorganiserbehindthis cultural showcase, emphasises the importance

ofsharingVietnamesehistoryandculturewith the broader community.

“To understand our culture is to appreciate its beauty, and this applies to all cultures,” Tran said.

“I have always had a personal passion for introducing Vietnamese history and cultural aspects into the mainstream so that children and people from other ethnic backgrounds can understand and appreciate our heritage.”

Since its establishment in 2019, Bach Viet Dance has been dedicated to fostering cultural understanding and cohesion within the


The group, consisting of 14 members aged 36 to 62, has previously collaborated with other organisations and continues to receive strong support from the community.

Last year’s cultural show focused on North Vietnamese culture and attracted a diverse audience. This year, the group is excited to expand their reach and share the beauty of Vietnamese culture with even more people from various backgrounds.

“It’s been about five years now since we started and we’ve done a number of events that

performance will take over Town Hall Broadmeadows on Friday, June 14. (Supplied)

Cultural performance coming soon

Bukjeh’s performance, Hakima, is coming to Broadmeadows.

Hakima means ‘Wise woman’ in Arabic, and embodies the essence of strength, wisdom and resilience of women.

The performance brings together local poets with roots in Africa and the Levant to honour and uplift the stories of women in times of war and displacement.

Through stories, poetry and songs, Hakima shares the experiences of mothers of survivors and martyrs, of women who couldn’t say goodbye, and mothers who are amplifying

their voices and drawing inspiration from their resilience, faith and unwavering fortitude.

It’s an exploration of the wisdom that emerges from challenges, offering a platform for these wise women to share their invaluable life lessons and tales of perseverance.

The performance has support from Hume council’s arts grants program, and will take place on Friday, June 14, from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, at Town Hall Broadmeadows.

Also coming to the Town Hall is a Hakima exhibition in the gallery.

Opening up on June 14 and staying until

Friday, September 13, the multimedia installation that transports visitors into a sensory experience of the bustling markets, kitchens and serene landscapes of the Levant, inviting an exploration of the connections between the food we savour, the stories we tell, and the art that transcends time and borders.

The exhibition celebrates the artistry of preparing traditional dishes, as well as the communal spirit of sharing meals with loved ones.

Free tickets:

Stockroom visual art spectacles on show

Kyneton Stockroom is hosting two new visual art exhibitions – ‘Dystopia’ by Guillaume Dillée and ‘Homage’ by David Doyle. French-bornandself-taughtartistGuillaume Dillée moved to Australia with his family 10 years ago, and was confronted by the harshness of the Australian natural environment.

“When we arrived in Australia, we had to face almost every day hearing the news about all the climate change issues with the huge fires we had ... with all the issues with water, with the air, with pollution, with climate change,” Dillée said.

From observing this, Dillée was inspired to begin creating artworks that reflected the link between humans and the Australian natural landscape.

“I started to understand that nature was struggling against all types of human activities and also humans were struggling against nature – so that balance was very inspiring for me and it was one of my main concerns,” he said.

In his exhibition statement, Dillée said that the title ‘Dystopia’ refers to the dreamlike

quality of his work and a “conceptual world where the relationship between man and nature is perpetually at odds”.

David Doyle is a Barkindji/Malyangapa man based in Broken Hill, NSW, and presents his

benefit the community,” Tran said.

“This year we’re lucky enough to continue to be supported to produce this cultural show focussing on Vietnamese culture. We have been rehearsing relentlessly every week, twice a week.”

TheEmperorCity(FromPasttoPresent)will hit the stage at the Bowery Theatre in St Albans on Saturday, July 6, from 7-9.45pm. Tickets are $15, or $10 for children 12 years and under.

The show will be presented in both English and Vietnamese.


Art honours Mother Earth

Hopetoun Park local Tanisha Quilliam is probably one of the most accomplished 15 year olds in Victoria.

The Bacchus Marsh Grammar year 10 student has displayed her artwork in the LUME Melbourne and spoken at the United Nations.

Now, the three time Koori Heritage Trust winner is displaying her art in an exhibit for the Moorabool council as part of Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week.

Quilliam said she is proud First Nations artists are getting a spotlight.

“It’s really amazing that they wanted to include more Indigenous people in exhibiting art and I just love sharing my culture with everybody,” she said.

Titled ‘The Art of Destruction and Rejuvenation’, Quilliam’s exhibit explores the different understandings that Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians have with nature.

“I’ve noticed that the Indigenous community is struggling with trying to show that burning off the land is a way to rejuvenate it and bring back the natural growth and cycle of the land,” she said. “I really wanted to showcase that because I’m very connected to Mother Earth.”

Quilliam said her favourite part of the exhibit was the end piece.

“It’sa3Dfacewhichhastheillustration ofpartoftheWerribeeRiveranditshows her beauty after all she’s been through.”

Quilliam’s father, Wayne, is a renowned photographer and curator. She said he inspires her in organic ways.

“He helps me grow in my creative ability but he pushes me in a way that creates my own sense of what I want to do.”

The outdoor exhibit, at The Village Green, 197 Main Street, Bacchus Marsh, will be open until Monday, July 29.

exhibition ‘Homage’ covering three different series: Glass Coolamon, Unbroken Shields and Curved Parrying Shields.

In The Glass Coolamon series, Doyle uses the glass art medium to pay tribute to his grandparents, ancestors, Barkindji country, and his Malyangapa heritage.

The two shield series communicate his cultural identity and the struggles of preserving it, with some designs hailing from his ancestors.

“When creating these works, I made sure to do extensive research into shields and designs pertinent to my Aboriginal heritage,” Doyle said.

“A shield is like an ID, individual to the owner, so I didn’t want to take the identity of anyone else … I made small changes to ensure they were unique but still followed the Barkindji design principles.”

The shields are part of a larger story that can be viewed on the Kyneton Stockroom website.


Oscar Parry

Eddie Russell Tanisha Quilliam in front of her exhibit. (Supplied: Moorabool council). A painting from Guillaume Dillée’s exhibition ‘Dystopia’. (Magali Gentric) Bukjeh’s Hakima

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Applicants will need their own reliable vehicle for which we will provide an allowance. The position is salaried, plus we offer an open ended commission scheme.

Send your application letter and resume to: Advertising Sales Manager, Mandy Clark

16 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 SAIDA’S PAINTING Top Quality Guaranteed EST. 2008 • Domestic • Commercial • Interior • Exterior • New Homes • Renovation • Plaster Repairs • Roof Painting Call for a Free Quote 0416 561 594 0403 610 782 12664534-SN05-24 CONCRETING PTY LTD GTVSpecialising in all types of concreting. Plain • Colour • Stencil • Slate Pattern • Exposed Aggregate • Driveways • Pathways • Garage Floors • Factory Floors • Car Parks • Driveway Pressure Cleaning FREE QUOTES. Call Matthew: 0413 789 755 12589153-MS06-23 V Concrete Products & Services seaview 12416368-CG17-19 ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ 0439 858 298 Painting Services AA CABINETS Specializing in: • Kitchens • Wardrobes • Vanities • Custom Built Storage Space For a free quote please contact Andy 0408 081 888 Showroom: 45 Knight Ave, Sunshine North Email: 12586003-MS03-23 V Painters/Decorators V Cabinet Makers 12418345-SN21-19 AK BRICKLAYING All Types of Bricklaying Restoration Work ฀ Brick Fences ฀ Repair Work Contact Adam 0422 250 675 V Bricklayers TLC Domestic Home Maintenance Promotion Gutter Cleaning - $175+GST (single story) Window Cleaning - $235+GST (single story – both sides) Email: Mark: 0416 707 477 or Nam: 0416 038 813 NDIS & My Aged Care Service Provider 12693972-MS23-24 V Home Maintenance section of Network Classifieds. Motoring Your local paper has brought together local employers and local employees for generations... Then give us the job... Call our Network Classifieds team on 1300 666 808 or email us - NEED LOCAL STAFF? AIR CONDITIONING ANDHEATING REPAIR, SUPPLY AND INSTALLATIONS Evaps from $2800 • EVAPORATIVE COOLERS • SPLIT SYSTEMS • HOT WATER SYSTEMS • DUCTED HEATING JAD COOLING AND HEATING 0425 804 593 or 0425 876 176 AU 21094Lic 12642070-ET42-23 V Heating One stop shop - Kitchen, bathroom, laundries & renovation needs. Complete service from start to finish, including kitchen 3D design. Appliance packages available. Bathroom tapware, accessories & tiles on display in our showroom. Showroom by appointment only Free Quotes & Mobile Ensuite Hire. terms & conditions apply Plumbing Tiling Electrical Carpentry Plastering 8348 5441 Kitchens & Bathroom Renovations 12420493-CG25-19 Please note that we specialise in renovations - we do not do repairs or maintenance V Bathroom & Kitchens ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ FREE QUOTES 0421 421 640 RJ GUTTERS New & Existing Homes ★★ 1232632-ACM26-16 V Guttering SAME DAY TV ANTENNA SERVICE • 40 Years Family Owned & Operated • 25 Year Warranty • Senior/Pensioner Discount 0488 816 557 FAST FRIENDLY EFFICIENT #1 in KEILOR DOWNS Phone 7am-8pm| FREE QUOTES 12619649-FC29-23 12682149-SM16-24 Call Sam 0450 820 170 - 7 days • Lawn mowing • Rubbish Removal • Hedging • Pruning • Gutter cleaning • Tree Lopping • Screenings gravel • Mulching • Installation of natural and synthetic grass and lots more Garden Maintenance & Rubbish Removals A1 V Antennas AMAZING GARDEN SERVICES Specialist in • Lawn mowing • Edging Pruning / HedgeTrimming • Regular Maintenance • Rubbish Removals •Tree Lopping • Gutter Cleaning Call Joe 0498 375 094 - 7 days V Garden Services AIR CONDITIONING COOLING & HEATING • House • Commercial, Evaporator Coolers • Ducted Heaters • Split System, Commercial Refrigeration System, Supplying, Installation, Service • Repair • Get done by us Industrial Ave, Hoopers Crossing 3029 Call 1300 850 696 or 0433 874 699 L065074 12612983-KG24-23 We accept 0% Interest Payment Plans V Air Conditioning Lou 0412 339 445 Tony 0431 339 739 Lou’s Colorbond Fencing Gates & Pergolas 12402755-RA44-18 ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ V Fencing & Gates 12629487-MS35-23 Residential - Commercial - Industrial NATHAN FENECH CONCRETING FREE QUOTES Mobile: 0478 129 330 | ABN. 43462185813 All• Footings • Slabs • Foundations • Permeable Concrete • Concrete Paving • Concrete Restorations NO JOB TOO SMALL! SMALL CONCRETING JOBS SMALL CONCRETING JOBS SMALL CONCRETING JOBS "We do all the small jobs that the bigger companies don't have time for" Up to 60 square metres Shed floors, paths, driveways etc. Coloured, plain, slate and stencil. FREE MEASURE & QUOTE Workmanship guaranteed, with over 30 years experience Phone Tony 0404 775 573 12416265-CG17-19 Placing
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1. Which team did Central Coast Mariners defeat 3-1 to win the 2024 A-League Men Grand Final?

2. Which Canadian city is set to become home to the WNBA’s 14th team?

3. Which 1977 NBA MVP and two-time champion (1977 and 1986) was the number one pick in the 1974 draft?

4. What women’s single sculls medal did Tara Rigney win at both the 2022 and 2023 World Rowing Championships?

5. Which Australian bowler was awarded player of the match after Kolkata defeated Hyderabad in the 2024 IPL final?

6. Jack O’Loughlin became the 38th Australian to play Major League Baseball, after debuting for which team?

7. A proposed NHL team in which US state is said to be choosing from names including Ice, Yetis, and Blizzard?

8. Which Slovenia-born NBA player wears number 77 for the Dallas Mavericks?

Michael Maguire coaches which rugby league State

Leek Aleer plays for which AFL club?

Which two Italian Serie A soccer clubs played a friendly match in Perth in late May?

Which Monégasque Formula One driver recently won his home race, the Monaco Grand Prix?

13. Which Indian batsman was the leading runscorer in this year’s IPL cricket tournament?

14. And which team were the eventual champions for the third time in its history?

15. Which golfer, the women’s world No.1 player, scored a 10-over par in the opening round of the US Women’s Open?

16. Which country has won the most men’s and women’s World Curling Championships?

17. Which Norwegian men’s tennis player finished runner-up at the French Open in both 2022 and 2023?

18. Phil Waugh is the CEO of which Australian sports governing body?

19. Which AFL team has had a continuous, active sponsorship with the Ford Motor Company since 1925?

20. In which country is the headquarters of the International Olympic Committee located?

21. In which year did Carlos Alcaraz win his first Grand Slam singles title?

22. Former Geelong captain Tom Harley is the current CEO of which AFL club?

23. In curling, what is the name of the circular target area on the ice that players aim to get their stones into?

24. In darts, how many points is a bullseye worth?

25. In which year did West Coast play its first AFL season?

26. Which country has emerged as a contender to become the first African nation to host the Commonwealth Games?

27. Which men’s Super Rugby team will be axed at the end of the 2024 season due to financial difficulties?

28. Which club has never been relegated since the foundation of the English Premier League in 1992: Aston Villa, Everton or Manchester City?

29. Only two countries have won Olympic gold medals in skateboarding: Australia (1) and which other country (3)?

30. In which year did Lance Franklin kick more than 100 goals in a season?

1. Melbourne Victory 2. Toronto 3. Bill Walton 4. Bronze 5. Mitchell Starc 6. Oakland Athletics 7. Utah 8. Luka Doncic 9. New South Wales 10. Greater Western Sydney Giants 11. AC Milan and AS Roma 12. Charles Leclerc 13. Virat Kohli 14. Kolkata Knight Riders 15. Nelly Korda 16. Canada 17. Casper Ruud 18. Rugby Australia 19. Geelong 20. Switzerland 21. 2022 2. Sydney Swans 3. House 4. 50 5. 1987 6. Ghana 7. Melbourne Rebels 8. Everton 9. Japan 10. 2008 Carlos Alcaraz Lance Franklin 1406 Tuesday, 11 June, 2024 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY 17 Real Estate section of Network Classifieds. Andrew for a Free Quote 0421 836 152 MELTON TREE & STUMP REMOVALS 12621309-AP29-23 “Your Local Tree & Stump Removalist” • Fully Insured Tree Lopping • Mulching & Stump Grinding V Tree Lopping/Surgery FREE CAR REMOVAL Pay up to $500 for most cars Dead or Alive LMCT 10268W 7 days a week service Call Gus for a free quotation on 0435 904 818 12321532-HM36-16 LICENSED & INSURED 17 YEARS GUARANTEE ALL SUBURBS COVERED COUNCIL PERMIT SUPPLIED 10% PENSIONER DISCOUNT NO HIDDEN FEES 12690060-FC21-24 V Wrecking Motoring CHEAP BIN HIRE AND RUBBISH REMOVAL • 2,3,4,6,8m 3 Bins available • Bins starting from $150 Mixed rubbish accepted PENSIONER DISCOUNT CALL: 0415 177 388 12558257-ET28-22 V Rubbish Removal ADVERTISERS, in this section are qualified practitioners and offer nonsexualservices. CALL 1300 666 808 ADVERTISE with us and get better results G6795050AA-dc29Apr MEMBER OF MASTER BUILDERS ASSOCIATION NICK’S RE-BLOCKING SERVICE ALL SUBURBS ★ RAISING ★ LEVELLING ★ UNDERPINNING ★ RESTUMPING WITH CONCRETE OR REDGUM STUMPS ★ COUNCIL PERMIT ★ ALL WORK GUARANTEED FREE SMOKE ALARM PH: 9360 5357 Mobile: 0412 378 193 Reg No 8659 Registered Building Practitioner 1132314-LB19-14 V Massage Therapists Trades & Services ANY TREES LOPPED C & D Schroeder 9337 3695 or 0415 816 882 Free Quote 7 Day Service 45 yrs exp. Trees Pruned Reshaped Grubbed out. All Foliage/Rubbish Removed Fully Insured $20m Pensioner Discount 12689471-CB21-24 EXTREME REBLOCKING The best Reblocking & Underpinning • Full Insurance • Building permit supplied • Pump to be used • 100% Computer leveling • Since 1999 Call Sam for a Free Quote 9324 8575 or 0409 237 487 12639993-HC41-23 V Reblocking/Underpinning ‘It’s All In The Name’ 12 - Year Warranty Open 24/7Free Inspections 9702 4952 12681352-MS15-24 •Roof Repairs & Replacement •Gutter Repairs & Replacement •Fascia & Eave Repair & Replacement •Tile Roof Restoration • All Metal Roofing •Architectural Cladding • Senior Discounts • Family Business ADVERTISERS PLEASE NOTE Anyone advertising a puppy, dog, kitten or cat in Victoria for sale or re-homing will need a source number from the Pet Exchange Register and a microchip identification number. It is now an offence to advertise unless the source number and microchip identification number is included in the advertisement or notice. For further information, call 136 186 or visit 12423634-SN31-19 Rainbow Club 48 Davies Avenue, Sunshine North 0468 693 833 SWA6566B $110/ 30mins Open 7 days 12652832-AI48-23 12690823-MP21-24 QUALITY WORK AT DISCOUNT PRICES DAWSONS TREE SERVICES $20 MILLION INSURANCE • No Fuss • No Mess • No Stress 9720 5111 V Pets & Services V Adult Services For all roof restoration needs. Cleaning, repointing, painting, leak repairs, etc… ฀ ฀ ฀ ฀ Call Mark 0401 478 799 TILE COAT 12386073-RC18-18 MIRMIC PLUMBING Lic 35031 • General Plumbing & Maintenance • Spouting & Roofing • Hot & Cold Water Services • Gas work FREE Quotes Call Mick 0417 352 040 12530339-JW02-22 V Roofing General Classifieds TO: CHRISTINEMAY WALLACETakenotewe adviseyouRussellNoel Wallaceisdeceasedand youareabeneficaryof hiswill.Toclaim contactColinWallace. 12553448-JC23-22 • Stumps Removed • Fully Insured • Woodchipping & Mulching • Pensioner Discounts Certificate in Tree Climbing & Tree Felling 0418 378 097 5% DISCOUNT on presentation of this ad A& ARCHIE’S TREE SERVICE REMOVED OR TRIMMED 12586475-SN03-23 DHEZROZ RENOVATIONS Alan 0422 597 449 Dhez 0423 087 259 20 years experience • Bathroom Kitchen & Toilet Renovation • Carpentry • Plastering • Painting • Gardening • Landscaping • Concreting 12694766-MP23-24 Professional Services Find it in the section of Network Classifieds. V Renovations V Tree Lopping/Surgery V Plumbing V Public Notices and Event General Notices Trades & Services


1 Suns (5)

4 Stages (9) 9 Sneak (5)

10 Bite-sized appetiser (5,4)

11 Work of Charles Dickens

– Twist (6)

12 Nullify (8)

14 Preferred things (10)

15 First book of the Christian Bible (abbr) (3)

17 Pile (3)

19 Self-centred (10)

23 Women’s underwear and nightwear (8)

24 Doctor (6)

26 Happen (9)

27 Smooth transition (5)

28 Settler (9)

29 ‘Not on your – !’ (coll) (5)


1 Aid (6)

2 The A in USA (7)

3 Highest rank (coll) (7)

4 Pontiff (4)

5 Exercises (10)

6 – contract, a standardised forward contract (7)

7 Rampaging (7)

8 Scalpel users (8)

13 First concerns (10)

16 Logical (8)

18 Arcade game involving steel balls (7)

19 1970s band, – Lake and Palmer (7)

20 Treachery (7)

21 Against the law (7)

22 Throughway (6)

Using the nine letters in the grid, how many words of four letters or more can you list? The centre letter must be included and each letter may only be used once. No colloquial or foreign words. No capitalised nouns, apostrophes or plural nouns ending in “s”.


became the oldest Oscar nominee in any category?

3 Who is trapped in the ninth and final circle of Dante’s hell?

4 Which US state is the only one with a single-syllable name? 5 The fictional Lydia Tár is the chief conductor of which orchestra? 6 What were the

No. 189 No. 189 No. 189
25 Close (4)
QUICK CROSSWORD DECODER WORDFIT 9-LETTER WORD 5x5 QUICK QUIZ To solve a Sudoku puzzle, every number from 1 to 9 must appear in: each of the nine vertical columns, each of the nine horizontal rows and each of the nine 3 x 3 boxes. Remember, no number can occur more than once in any row, column or box. No. 189 78 9 1749 42 3 52 58 63 7 6 582 916 7 96 12 4 16 easy 3712 7143 1574 2 6 912 935 674 269 5 6 medium 87 5 165 42 3 569 2 98 721 467 49 5 169 hard No. 189 SUDOKU
How many extra teeth did Queen frontman Freddie Mercury have?
95th Academy Awards, which 91-year-old
2 At the
first living creatures to be sent to space in 1947?
Which artwork at the Louvre has its own mailbox for fan letters?
In what decade was the Taiwanese beverage bubble tea first released?
Which three Baz Luhrmann films has actor David Wenham (pictured) appeared in? 10 Oobleck,
afire, after, fain, faint, fainter, fair, fame, famine, fare, farm, fate, fear, feat, feint, feria, fern, fiat, fine, finer, fire, fireman, firm, FIRMAMENT, frame, fret, infer, infra, raft, refit, rife, rift
a substance that mimics both a
and a liquid, is made by mixing water with what?
I A E S O E I I A E T A S P E N S C O R E T I B I A A G E N T M A S S E P R E E N F R N M M T 15 words: Good 23 words: Very good 31 words: Excellent Today’s Aim:
LETTERS AGENT AGILE AILED AORTA ASHES ASPEN ASSET CARAT CHESS COWER CRANK DOERS DUELS ESSAY GLEAM GRAPE HEATS HORDE IGLOO IRATE ITEMS LOSES MAIZE MANES MEDAL METER MOVER NIECE OLIVE OMEGA OPERA PYRES REEDS REGAL SAVED SENSE SHINE SHOVE SIREN SLEDS SLEEP SLIME SORTS STUNT TERSE TORSO TREES VISES WIVES ZESTS 6 LETTERS ARTERY LLAMAS RIDDLE SPHERE 7 LETTERS BUNGLER DESSERT EASTERN PROSPER REVENUE TRAINER 8 LETTERS AMICABLY EPILEPSY PEERLESS PENITENT ASSET CARAT REGAL SHINE OMEGA IGLOO HORDE WIVES DOERS EVE NIECE KID ATE SEND CRANK LLAMAS UTE BUNGLER MOVER LEER TACT EPILEPSY WAIT SHE DESSERT PROSPER ARE SOUP PEERLESS LASS NOTE SENSE EASTERN HOE SPHERE MAIZ E PASS LYE TAX ITEMS GAL IRATE MANES OLIVE METER AGENT AILED ESSAY SORTS REEDS 12 345678910111213 1415 1617181920212223242526 U J W O Z D B I G R Y C X A F H K Q E N L M T P V S Insert the missing letters to make 10 words – five reading across the grid and five reading down. NOTE: more than one solution may be possible 14-06-24 Puzzles and pagination © Pagemasters | 437912568 871529436 328156749 185463297 569341872 914738625 692875314 243687951 756294183 easy medium hard 231567489 312754896 428376951 657948132 584692317 765189243 849213675 976831524 193425768 871245369 713869254 197456823 356918742 265174938 638792415 942637581 489523176 524381697 1 14 7 20 2 15 8 21 3 16 9 22 4 17 10 23 5 18 11 24 6 19 12 25 13 26 EASTERN PS 1. Four 2. John Williams 3. Satan 4. Maine 5. The Berlin Philharmonic 6. Fruit flies 7. The Mona Lisa 8. 1980s 9. Moulin Rouge! (2001), Australia (2008) and Elvis (2022) 10. Cornflour ANSWERS: 18 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY Tuesday, 11 June, 2024

Toyota banks on stylish new BEV

What’s in a name? Plenty if you happen to be one of the world’s largest automobile manufacturers pumping out products by the boatload.

Take Toyota, for example. Nothing goes better to describe the Land Cruiser as a prestigious go-anywhere off roader; then there’s the Prius, relating to its being the first mass produced petrol/hybrid car.

Now comes Toyota’s first wholly electric SUV, the BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle) bZ4X. The what? Surely that’s an internal maker’s code. Where’s the snappy showroom moniker? Was the marketing department on leave? ‘Oh, what a feeling’ . . . not!

So, what have we got? To say the car is simply a plug-in RAV4 is to undersell the bZ4X. Drawing on more than a quarter of a century of the company’s leadership in hybrid vehicle technology, this is the first Toyota in Australia to make use of the new BEV-dedicated e-TNGA platform, integrating battery and motor into the vehicle’s structure, providing extra rigidity and a low centre of gravity for stable driving dynamics.

The bZ4X is a midsize SUV that comes in twoversions–front-wheeldriveandall-wheel drive – priced from $66,000 and $74,900, respectively. A standard Toyota five years/ unlimited kilometres warranty applies, or seven years on motor and driveline with logbookservicing.Alsoofferediscappedprice servicing for the first five years/75,000km, witheach12-month/15,000kmservicecosting $189.

An optional full-service lease, covering maintenance, mechanical repairs, replacement tyres, roadside assist, Toyota Comprehensive insurance plus registration and third-party insurance, is on offer through one single monthly payment.

The FWD version is equipped with LED headlights, 20-inch alloy wheels and a list of convenience and safety features, synthetic leather trim, heated front seats, the driver’s eight-way adjustable and dual zone climate control.

The AWD bZ4X (the test vehicle) is taken to the next level with roof spoiler, panoramic sunroof, roof rails and gloss black bonnet highlight.


Designers were tasked with combining the character of a BEV with the stylish and functional look of an SUV. The bZ4X is the first model Down Under to display Toyota’s hallmark ‘hammerhead’ front, with the bonnet surface reaching out to the nose and each corner.

A spoiler above the horizontal tail-light line contributes to aerodynamics, along with the diffuser surfaces below the rear bumper. Other details that contribute to the car’s 0.279 coefficientofdragincludeafrontgrilleshutter that closes when limited cooling is needed, front air curtains that promote airflow down thebodysides,andafullycoveredunderbody.

ThebZ4X20-inchdoublefive-spokewheels, with contrasting black and machined finish andgreyresinaccentsforathree-dimensional detailed look.

Oneofsixexteriorcolours,thetestcar’swas Feverish Red – or as one would-be influencer put it: ‘ A bit like a winter red nail polish.’ –with gloss black roof and bonnet panel.


The e-TNGA platform has allowed the wheels to be extended outward to the front and rear, making more room for occupants, and optimising the traction of all-wheel drive off road.

The AWD variant gains a nine-speaker JBL premium audio, Premium SofTex seat trim, Qi-compatible wireless charger, ventilated front seats, heated steering wheel driver’s seat memory function and power tailgate with kick sensor.

Boot capacity is 441 litres for the AWD3, thanks to clever packaging of the AWD rear

e-Axle and JBL sound system. A further 10-litre storage space under the cargo floor houses the included charge cables and tool kit And. don’t go looking for a glovebox. There isn’t one. A large space under the floating centre console takes its place.


The latest Toyota multimedia technology is harnessed through a 12.3-inch touchscreen with access to DAB+ radio, wireless Apple CarPlay,andAndroidAuto.Voicerecognition, called up by the command ‘Hey, Toyota’, will control a range of functions such as opening windows.

This multi-media system provides access to the latest Toyota Connected Services online features, including the myToyota smartphone app, which is complimentary for a 12-month period.

BEV specific features include charge station locations and charge management. Over-the-air updates, cloud navigation and live traffic information are included.

A 7-inch driver multi-information display is cleverly situated directly behind the steering almost up against the windscreen but below the bonnet line, making it almost a head-up display and is visually sharp and easy to read.

The 350mm steering wheel, smaller than on other Toyotas, also aids visibility.



Looks: 8/10

Performance: 9/10

Safety: 7/10

Thirst: 7/10

Practicality: 8/10

Comfort: 8/10

Tech: 8/10

Value: 6/10

TheFWDmodelincorporatesafront-mounted e-Axle combining transaxle, motor and inverter into an integrated, compact unit, while the AWD variant uses front and rear 80 kW e-Axles with maximum combined outputs of 160 kW and 337 Nm.

Providing the power is a 71.4 kWh lithium-ion battery that is extensively tested for 20 days before being fitted to the vehicle.


As well as seven airbags, up-to-date Toyota Safety Sense, a combination of technologies is designed to protect passengers, the battery and other vehicles and pedestrians.

A pre-collision system can detect vehicles, motorcycles, cyclists in daytime only, and pedestrians even at intersections. Other features include active cruise control, emergency steering assist, lane trace assist, emergency driving stop system, road sign assist with speed signs only, and parking support brake.

Features above those of FWD include driver attention and blind spot monitors, safe exit assist, intelligent parking assist and 360-degree panoramic view of the vehicle.


The bZ4X set off almost in silence (road noise taking its place) with just a gentle push in the

back. The 337 Nm of torque was put to good use in all driving conditions, from stop/start city going to the freedom of an open-road rush.

Rideandhandlingqualitywaswhatwehave cometoexpectovertheyearsfromToyota,the small steering wheel outwearing its gimmicky introduction to come into its own, especially during tight manoeuvres.

Regenerative braking (using the electric motor to slow the car) was more ‘hands-off’ than some similar systems and needed brake pedal back-up to bring the car to a complete halt.

Energy efficiency is put by the maker at 18.1kWhper100kilometres.TheAWDontest averaged 18kWh per 100 kilometres.

Charging was a breeze at the local public fast charge station, with the tester going from 30 to 90 per cent in 45 minutes. I could live with that.

Off road, the all-wheel drive variant is helped by 212 mm ground clearance and dedicated X-Mode driving aids that optimise traction in snow/dirt or deep snow/mud and take in crawl and downhill assist.


For more than 25 years Toyota led the electrification way with the Prius petrol/ electric hybrid. I wonder if the bZ4X can do the same for the BEV.

Now comes Toyota’s first wholly electric SUV, the BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle) bZ4X. (Pictures: Supplied)

Winless Roadrunners committed to improving

It may not be pretty on the scoreboard for North Sunshine, but it doesn’t tell the story for the Roadrunners in the Western Football League women’s competition.

The Roadrunners are winless this season and have been on the wrong end of some very big losses.

Coach Emily Smith said the group were so committed and just wanted to get better.

“It is amazing,” she said. “It’s been really enjoyable and the core group has been here for a while.

“There’s some new girls, some who have never played before and some from other clubs. We get compliments from other clubs that we keep turning up each week and I think we do much more than turn up.

“I tell people, the group don’t think twice about it.”

Smith said they’ve set smaller targets they want to achieve and are focusing on playing as a team.

She said making sure they enjoy it is something else they look at.

“Things like tackling and marking and some things they’ve never done before,” she said. “They tick them off each week.

“They’re slowly improving and making progress and having fun as they do it.”

Smith said one of the biggest things for the clubwasmakingsuretheyhadthatcommunity connection and a place of belonging.

She said there were many women who had come to the club for their children and were volunteers who are now getting out there and playing.

Smith in her second season coaching the women’s side said she was loving being back involved and coaching.

She said she loved being back involved at her junior club.

She played her junior football at the club before moving on to play cricket, including playing in the WBBL.

Smith later returned to football and played nine games for Collingwood in the AFLW.

She said never say never to looking to playing AFLW again, but she said she’s enjoying her football now.

As well as coaching the Roadrunners, Smith is playing for Aberfeldie in the Essendon District Football League.

She said both clubs were supportive of allowing her to do both. The two clubs had a joint banner for my 200th game as a player.

“The girls now train on a different night,” she said. “It allows me to get down there and I coach before my game on a Saturday.

“I’m enjoying my time at Aberfeldie and it’s a chance to play at a club that will be in my life for a long time.”

There were no games on the weekend, with the Roadrunners back in action this week against the Suns.

Gray ready for challenge

A conversation with Keilor coach Mick McGuane led new Richmond recruit Campbell Gray on the right path to achieving his AFL dream.

Gray, a Keilor premiership player, was picked up by the Tigers in the mid-season draft after a stunningsixmonthswithEssendon’sVictorian Football League side.

Like many footballers, Gray was keen to test himself at VFL level at the end of the 2022 season.

“After that first full season I had a conversation with Mick about going down that path and he didn’t think I was ready,” he said. “He didn’t think I had played enough senior football and that he didn’t think the time was rightandthatIwouldbeshootingmyselfinthe foot.”

Whilehedidn’tagree,Graydecidedtofollow McGuane’s advice.

He pushed hard last season with the Blues and played a key role in their Essendon District Football League premier division premiership.

He then gave it a crack to get on a VFL list in the off season and the rest is now history.

Gray enters the AFL having never played Coates Talent League or in the Victorian Football League.

He had spoken to the Tigers in the lead up to the draft, but they had given nothing away.

“There’s still a lot to process,” he said. “It’s prettyamazingtobehonestasnotmanypeople get to do that.

“It’s been six months [in the VFL] and I’ve been learning so much and I wasn’t really focusing on how well I’ve done.

“It’s pretty crazy, I’m now on an AFL list. Eight months ago I was playing with Keilor. Gray started his football career with Pascoe Vale and played most of his junior career there. He made the switch to Keilor to play with his schoolmates from Overnewton College.

His Blues debut came in 2021 with Gray saying he was a long way from where he needed to be.

“It was a bit of a culture shock,“ he said. “I got the opportunity to play one game in the seniors which was an experience.

“As Mick likes to say, he likes to rattle the cage a bit [by giving opportunities] and I learned a lot.

“I went back to the 18s and took those tricks I learned about how to use my body.”

Gray said he was fond of McGuane and the way he went about things.

He said a lot of McGuane’s values and saying have helped get him to this point of his career. McGuane isn’t the only one he has taken advice from at Keilor, picking the brains of the likes of Corey Ellis and Nick O’Kearney about being in an AFL system, “Those types of players have experienced it,”

he said. “They know better than moos guys as they’ve been there and know what this is.”

Gray didn’t have long to settle in, playing in the Tigers VFL match on the weekend.

He said he’s trying to find his feet.

“I’m loving the opportunity and trying to gain as much knowledge as possible,” he said.

‘I’m coming in every day to use the facilities and certain aspects and have meetings about


Luke Vickery and Khoder Kaddour have signed their first professional contracts, signing two year deals with Western United.

Both players have progressed through the ranks in the Western United Academy and each made their A-League Men’s debuts in the 2023-24 season.

Vickery’s rapid development earned him a maiden Young Socceroos call-up last month. The 18-year-old has been in electric form with five goals in 11 Victorian Premier League 1 matches this season.

Kaddour made five first-team appearances last season before his season was cut short by an ACL injury.

Kaddour and Vickery said they are ready to step up into an exciting future at Ironbark Fields.

“All my hard work has been building towards this. I honestly thought this was never going to happen, so for it to happen is a dream come true,” Kaddour said.

“It feels good having my friends who I’ve known for years signing for the same club. That’s the kind of thing you don’t think would happen. It gives the club something to look forward to – a good future with a lot of young players signing.”

Vickery added, “I can’t wait to keep growing both as a player and a person with the club and I’m so grateful for this opportunity – the hard work starts now.

“The fans definitely have to come out and watch us. There’s a lot of youth, a lot of excitement, a lot of energy. It’ll be a very exciting season next year and it’ll be awesome for a lot of fans to come and support us at our home in Tarneit.”

United football general manager Mal Impiombato celebrated the achievements of Vickery and Kaddour.

what is next.”

While he would love to make his AFL debut, it isn’t his main focus just yet.

“Being able to get there would be off the back of hard work and learning the systems and learning what AFL is and what it’s about.

“I want to get better over the next six months andtaketheopportunityandlearningoffsome of the stars.”

“We are immensely proud to confirm these two signings – players that have come into our academy pathway, developed as footballers and as people in our system and are now ready for the professional game,” he said.

The pair of youngsters join Abel Walatee in signing their first senior contracts for next season, while Matthew Grimaldi has committed to a three-year contract as Western United.

Vickery, Kaddour get Emily Smith. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 333197_35 Campbell Gray. (Scott Sidley/Keilor FC)

Caroline Springs continuing to build

Caroline Springs is taking it week by week in the Western Football League women’s competition.

The Lakers are sitting in third spot with five wins from their seven matches, as they are again set to be one of the contenders come the pointy end of the season.

Coach Alex O’Shea said the season had flown so far.

“There’s been a few challenging games whichhavebeengood,”hesaid.“Therearetwo different types of teams in the competition, but everyone wants to play and have fun and that is why we play footy.

“Every week we take it as it comes and we treat every opponent with respect. It’s been nice to play different teams that we have not played in a while and reconnect in the football community.”

O’Shea said they again had a really good group of girls who were willing to do what they needed for the team.

She said this year they had looked to change things up a bit with some girls playing in new roles.

“We’ve been building consistency with a few girls having moved positions and it takes some time to adjust and learn new roles.

“They are open to feedback. Week by week we change things up and the forward line will go to the backline and the mids to the forward line.”

O’Shea highlighted Ashlee Wallis as one player who had taken on a new role, moving to the back line.

She said Taya Meiers, who joined from Keilor and Nyomi Stowers, who has come from a basketballer ground, as two new players who were having an impact.

“They are learning the game as well,” she said. ”They’ve been of great value to the team and the other players are helping them adapt.”

The Lakers had the weekend off due to the King’s Birthday weekend.

O’Shea said it came at a good time. They have another bye in a few weeks before a big run home.

O’Shea said they would look to head down to junior training during one of the breaks to help the next generation.


“It then starts again with the Werribee Centrals,” she said. ”Everyone wants to play finals.

“We’ll keep doing what we’re doing and work on what we need to improve on and hopefully get a few more wins.”

The Lakers’ men’s division 1 side faces Werribee Districts this Saturday.

Falcons keep on going

A stunning start to the second half was the key to the City West Falcons win against the Wilson Storage Southern Saints in the Victorian Netball League championship on Wednesday night.

Playing each other for the second time in less than a month, it was the Falcons that again came out on top, winning 63-52.

The Falcons had won the first match up with a similar result.

Falcons coach Marg Lind said there were similarities between the two matches. She said the Saints were always a good match up for them.

“IttookawhilebutIthinkitwas prettymuch the same as when we played Saints last time,” she said. “Again we changed our defensive strategy and then we started turning the ball over and got a bit more momentum.

“We made a couple changes in the attack end that worked quite well. Bringing Liv Cameron on was a good change.

“And Cookie [Jane Cook] just stood up a bit more in the second half. She said to me at half time, ‘what am I doing?’

“I said you’ve been a bit soft and she knew it and she was much better in the second half.“

Lind said the playing group again needed to recognise on court that the defensive structure needs to change instead of waiting for the coaches to tell them.

She said as soon as they made the change, things started to turn.

“I think we scored the first eight in the third quarter and that was with turnovers, four turnovers straight up made a big difference.” Cook shot 32 goals while Uneeq Palavi shot 23 as they shared the minutes around with Olivia Cameron and Genna Ogier both getting court time in the circle.

Lind said Mel Oloamanu did some good things under pressure, as did Sussu Liai. She said it wasn’t their best attacking game but they still scored more than 60 goals.

Lind said it was another good team effort.

The Falcons remain in top, six points clear of the Boroondara Express, which has played an extra game.

In under-23s, the Falcons beat the Saints 49-45.

Lind said after they started well they had a terrible game until late in the match.

“They lost the plot a bit, just wasting ball,” she said.

The Falcons sit in fourth spot a game clear of the Geelong Cougars in fifth.

The Falcons this week face the Bendigo Strikers.

It will test the Falcons depth with the Pacific Netball Series on at the same time.

Mel Oloamanu, Palavi and Lucia Fauonuku

will all miss the Strikers match along with under-23s player, Beyonce Palavi.

Lind said they had looked at moving the game, but stuck with the same time slot.

She said with it looking like Soli Ropati not

Sports shorts


The Deer Park Club has announced the signing of former Scotland international Kevin Anderson for the Bowls Victoria pennant premier division season. Head of bowls operations Mark Casey was thrilled with the signing. “After losing some incredible talent from last year’s premiership team, to be able to sign Kev gives us a massive boost heading into a new season,” he said. “Kev brings international experience and plenty of enthusiasm, he will be someone our members will draw to. It’s great news for our club.”


Two Western Jets footballers featured in the AFL National Academy girls Australian squad against a nationals all-stars side on Sunday. The all-stars team comprises of players aged 21 and under from across Australia for the first time, having previously been made up of talent from Victoria, Northern Territory and Tasmania only. Sierra Grieves was part of the Australian team, while Lou-Lou Field was part of the all-stars team. There was no Coates Talent League matches on the weekend due to the King’s Birthday long weekend.


Keilor Park has announced the signing of Nathan Kramer for the Victorian Turf Cricket Association division 3 season. Kramer joins the club from Glenroy where he played last season. He’s the latest in a number of signings for the Devils, who finished bottom in division 2 last season.


Keilor Thunder’s Maddy Rocci played a key role for the Australian Opals in their three match series against China. The Opals won the series, 2-1, with Rocci playing in each three games starting in the two wins. She played at least 17 minutes in each game. Rocci was expected to be back on court for the Thunder on Friday night.


making the trip to the series they would nearly have their starting line up.

“Wejustwon’thavemanyoptionsdefensively, but we’ll probably sit some 23s there just in case.”

Web: Brimbank & North West Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly
Ashlee Wallis. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 359360_37 Sussu Liai. (Robbab Photography)

‘Needed that one’: Cavaliers get Falzon first win

GreenGullyhasitsfirstwinontheboardunder Ramon Falzon.

After a draw in his first game in charge of the National Premier League side, the Cavaliers wereabletoclaimthepointsagainstHeidelberg United on Saturday afternoon.

Neither team was able to score in the first half, before the Cavaliers hit the front early in the second half.

The Cavaliers were able to seal the win late with their second goal, claiming the three points, 2-0.

Falzon said the win would do the playing group’s confidence the world of good.

“The boys really needed that one,” he said. “It was a good performance and a good result.

“I think it’s a step in the right direction after the first match where Manningham United equalised in the 94th minute.

“We were more structured and disciplined.”

The Cavaliers started well and were soon a

man up after Jamal Ali was given a red card in the 23rd minute.

Falzon said even though they were a man up, there were still some challenges.

“They were still structured and hard to break down,” he said. “The goal early in the second half was much needed.

“Against 10 men if you don’t find that first goal, it can get really frustrating. It can lead to mistakes.”

Falzon said he was enjoying his time at the Cavaliers so far.

Falzon joins the Cavaliers after a distinguishedcareerinNPLWesternAustralia, where he won four league premierships and championships, three top four trophies and one night series title, along with the 2021 NPL WA Premiership.

“It’s a really good club and has good people,” hesaid.“Withthepedigreeoftheclubeveryone wants to be higher up the ladder.

“Even in a tough situation when I came in two weeks ago, I feel like everyone is going in the same direction.”

The win has the Cavaliers in ninth spot, nine points outside the top six after 17 rounds.

Falzon said he was just keeping it simple.

“I’m taking it week by week, game by game,” he said. “We managed to be a lot better yesterday [Saturday] and got the win.

“It’s a step forward. We face Altona Magic next week. They had a 4-0 win, they are on a high at the moment.”

In other matches, Melbourne Knights faced St Albans Saints after deadline.

In the Victorian Premier League 1, Caroline Springs lost to Langwarrin 3-2 on Friday night.

In VPL2, North Sunshine Eagles beat Box Hill United 2-1 on Friday night. The Eagles sit atop the table, goal difference ahead of Melbourne Srbija

Harrower scores WNBL job

KeilorThunderwomen’scoachKristiHarrower will take the next step in her coaching career, appointed the Southside Flyers new coach.

Having been an assistant coach under Cheryl Chambers last season as they won the title, Harrower was last week announced as the WNBL side’s new coach.

For Harrower, it’s something that she had dreamedof,butdidn’tthinkitwouldcomethat quickly.

“It’s exciting times,” she said. “I hoped at one stage that I would get a chance, a few years down the track.

“I joined Keilor to get some experience and it’s not easy to get into the WNBL as there’s not always jobs.

“There’s eight teams in the league and something has to become available. I didn’t think it would happen that quick.”

Harrower said the Flyers were such an amazing club and that owner Gerry Harvey had done an amazing job.

She highlighted his commitment to

development and the teaching side of things, which Harrower also loves.

The appointment means Harrower will follow in the footsteps of her father, Bernie Harrower, in being a WNBL coach.

Bernie was the Bendigo Spirit’s inaugural coach, taking them to two championships.

Krisiti was part of those championships as a player.

“He always knew I would coach at some point,” she said of her dad.

“I was a coach on the floor as well and I learned so much from him.

“I feed off him and I brought back so much experience from overseas. When I was a player, he was coach, it was never a dad-daughter relationship.

“He is really proud I’ve what I’ve achieved along the way.”

Harrower said despite taking on the new role attheFlyers,shewasn’tplanningonleavingthe Thunder any time soon.

In her first season at the club, she’s loving being involved.


Reds coaching ‘parted ways’

Sydenham Park had to settle for a draw after a mid week coaching change for the FV state league 1 north-west side.

The Reds announced during the week that it had mutually parted ways with coachMilanBaturandhiscoachingstaff Mario Gouder and Bobbie Gagovski.

“The Sydenham executive board would like to thank them for their hard work and dedication over the years.

“The club is in the process of finding suitable replacements and will make further announcements in the coming days.”

Batur had been an assistant coach at the Reds the past three seasons after finishing his playing career.

The Reds had dropped their last two games heading into Saturday’s clash with Western Suburbs.

Western Suburbs scored first before the Reds were able to find an equaliser through Lochlan Johnston.

With Geelong winning, the Reds slipped to fifth spot with that result. The Reds are four points outside the top two.

In other results, Brimbank Stallions beat Upfield on Friday night, 2-1. Habib Fleifel scored both goals for the Stallions.

Second placed Westgate had a 3-2 loss to Ballarat City.

of Keilor,” she said. “I enjoy the people around the club and I’d like to stay there as long as possible.

“It’s five minutes from home and it’s a great fit for me. Coaching has become a job and do it all year round would be nice.”

Returning from China on Tuesday after being with the Australian Opals squad, Harrower will be back on the court coaching the Thunder on Friday night.

The Thunder was at home to Mt Gambier.

Harrower said before the match that they needed to step up against Mt Gambier after being terrible against them the last time they played.

“It’s a huge game for us. We have to make sure we’re physical as they were last time.”

Harrower got her wish with side getting the win, 78-73.

The Thunder led throughout the match but was never able to blow out the margin.

Penina Davidson top scored with 22 points, while Maddy Rocci had 21 points in her return from Opals duties.

The Thunder remain at the top of the table.

Scores were locked at 1-1 at half time, with Ballarat able to find two goals in the second half to claim the win.

Julio Beltran was the goal scorer for Westgate.

With top side Whittlesea United also suffering a loss, Westgate remains five points off top.

In state league 2 north-west, Keilor Park beat Albion Rovers and Westvale Olympic beat Craigieburn City, 2-1.

22 BRIMBANK & NORTHWEST STAR WEEKLY Tuesday, 11 June, 2024
Jason Hart and Goran Petrovski on Saturday. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 412101_12 Tara Murray Gianluca Iannucci. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 412089_13 Kristi Harrower. (@sgp_media)


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