Star Weekly - Wyndham - 12th June 2024

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Boy From Oz’s mum

Musical theatre legend Maureen Andrew tread the boards with Hugh Jackman in the original The Boy From Oz. Now, the Hoppers Crossing resident is back on the stage playing Peter Allen’s mother in the latest performance of the hit musical. Andrew is one of two western suburbs’ residents staring in the show, with opens at The National Theatre on July 6. ■ Story: Page 3

12 JUNE, 2024 Established in 1902 as the proudly serving Wyndham INDOOR/OUTDOOR | KIDS ACTIVITIES LIVE MUSIC | FOODTRUCKS 9am - 2pm | 3rd Sunday of the Month Werribee Racecource (Entry via BULBAN Rd) GOLD COIN ENTRY 12673749-AP10-24 (Ljubica Vrankovic)_410898_07

Plea to lock cars to stop thefts

Wyndham police are urging car owners to secure their vehicles as new data reveals the majority of vehicles targeted by thieves are unlocked.

Police intelligence showed 63 per cent of vehicles broken into across Wyndham last month had been unlocked. A large portion of cars forcefully broken into had valuables in plain sight.

Opportunisticcartheftsandtheftsfromcars have become so prevalent in Wyndham that police last year established a Vehicle Crime Reduction Team to tackle the issue.

Since February, the dedicated team of detectives have arrested more than 75 alleged thieves in the Wyndham area.

Anisha finds

Tarneit 17-year-old, Anisha Anand, is the Wyndham young person of the month for June.

A year 12 student at Good News Lutheran College, Anisha has been recognised for being an active member of the community, including being part of the Wyndham Youth Volunteering team, the Library Youth Collaboration and volunteering at cultural events such as Aus Tamil, Hare Krishna and the Oromo Women’s Networking group.

Anisha also recently won the second heat of the Rotary Youth Wyndham Speaking Competition and participated in the Young Scientist Competition, Turn the Dial workshop and Reclink workshop.

“I feel proud and honoured,” said Anisha in response to winning the award.

“Reflecting back on the things that I have done, it shows that I have developed courage and have shown a great amount of service and respect to the community.”

A gifted student, Anisha hopes to study aerospace engineering at university next year. Despite science and engineering having little to do with the community service she’s been recognised for, Anisha still considers it hugely beneficial for her future.

“In order to be ‘successful’ and ‘find purpose’ in my life, I believe I should immerse myself in all opportunities that captivate my interest so that I can learn and grow,” she said. When not studying or volunteering, Anisha enjoys singing, dancing, acting, photography, going for walks and playing basketball.

The youth of the month award is presented each month to a Wyndham resident aged 12 to 25 who has a positive influence on the community and is a role model for other young people.

Winners are awarded a $300 gift voucher of their choice and other prizes. Details: youth-services/awards-competitions/onewyndham

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This includes a 29-year-old Tarneit man who last Wednesday, May 29, was arrested for allegedly stealing identification cards from unlocked vehicles in Point Cook earlier this year. It will be alleged he then used the stolen IDs toattempttoobtaincreditcardsworth$20,000, and purchase a mobile phone.

As part of efforts to raise awareness, police have released vision of several thefts from cars that have occurred this year.

In one incident, an unknown male entered an unlocked vehicle in Tarneit and stole power banks and keys to several different properties about 3am on February 13.

A number of other males are observed

sussing the doors of vehicles across the road.

On another occasion, an unknown male entered a victim’s unlocked BMW in Tarneit and stole a laptop worth $3500 and $500 in cash about midnight on March 2.

A third incident shows a vehicle approach a parked white Jeep in Tarneit about 1.25am on April 2.

The offenders stole an $8000 watch from the glovebox.

While investigations into these incidents are continuing, police are reminding car owners that simple measures like removing valuables and locking vehicles can deter thieves.

Wyndham Vehicle Crime Reduction Team

Acting Detective Sergeant Darcy Spence said

purpose as a volunteer

discussions police have had thieves they’ve apprehended confirms this.

“When interviewed, offenders are telling us that they try multiple parked cars until they find one that is unlocked. That means we really need the community to help us help them,”

Acting Detective Sergeant Spence said.

“Please, lock your car at all times, even if it’s in a secure driveway, and always remove items that you wouldn’t want stolen.”

Anyone who witnesses suspicious behaviour around parked vehicles should report it to police via triple-0.

Anyone with information about the images released is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on

Polly Parade works finished

Grassroots soccer, cricket, netball, and tennis players in Tarneit North will soon have more courts and fields to take their game to the next level, thanks to works now under way at Polly Parade Reserve.

On Thursday, June 6, Tarneit MP Dylan Wight joined Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera to officially start works at the site, which are funded by $750,000 package from the state government.

The stage one works will deliver three turf soccer pitches complete with lighting, with two of the pitches located within a larger oval for cricket.

There are also six tennis courts on the way.

Stage two works will include a new sports pavilion.

Once complete, the new facilities will complement the children’s play space and the barbecue and picnic area recently completed at the reserve.

The new fields and courts will serve both new and existing clubs in the area, while nearby schools also able to access the new facilities for sports and casual play.

Mr Wight said Polly Parade Reserve would prove to be valuable addition to rapidly growing area.

“With more families moving into the Tarneit North community, this new sports precinct will provide a great new base for new clubs and locals to play the sports they love,” he said.

Two men arrested after second Tarneit follow in 24 hours

Police have arrested and charged two men after an alleged extended follow in Tarneit on June 5, the second such incident in 24 hours.

Police observed an allegedly stolen White 2015 BMW X1 travelling north on Sapling Boulevard in Truganina about 11.30pm.

The BMW is believed to have been involved in significant offending since the car was stolen from Point Cook on May 31.

With assistance from the police air wing, the BMW was alleged to have been observed travelling at speeds of 150 and 200 km/h throughout Truganina, Laverton North,

Hoppers Crossing and the Princes Freeway at Point Cook.

After attempts by police to slow the vehicle using stop sticks failed, the car continued to be driven erratically at high speed before coming to a stop in Memphis Drive, Truganina, where a man, believed to be a passenger, exited the BMW.

The19-year-oldTruganinamanwasarrested a short time later in Orlando Drive and charged with theft of motor vehicle and bailed to Werribee Magistrate’s Court on October 28. Officers later arrested a second man, an

18-year-old,about4.30amonThursday,June6, in Hayden Street, Hoppers Crossing.

It’sallegedtheHoppersCrossingmanwasin possession of the BMW which was stolen from LeroyStreet,PointCook,duringanaggravated burglary on May 31.

He has been charged with: Reckless conduct endangeringlife;recklessconductendangering seriousinjury;theftofamotorvehicle;failingto stop vehicle on police direction; driving whilst disqualified; aggravated burglary; obtaining property by deception, handling stolen goods and possessing a controlled weapon.

He will appear before the Sunshine Magistrates’ court later today. The investigation is continuing and police urgeanyonewithinformationtocomeforward. Thepreviousevening,Tuesday,June4,police arrested and charged a 40-year-old Hoppers Crossing man after a high speed chase through multiple suburbs came to an end in Tarneit. Anyonewhowitnessedeitherincidentorhas informationisurgedtocontactCrimeStoppers

Good News Lutheran College year 12 student, Anisha Anand, is Wyndham Young Person of the Month for June. (Damjan

Court delay offers opportunity

The state government is being urged to use a delay in the opening of the new Wyndham Law Courts to invest in other parts of the justice system that have been neglected.

Chief executive of Wyndham-based human rights and community legal centre, West Justice, Melissa Hardham, said while disappointing, the reported delay presented a rare opportunity for the state government.

“We encourage the government to use this time to engage with the local community and local organisations such as West Justice to take advantage of the once in a lifetime opportunity to create a really transformative and innovative approach to justice in

Victoria,” Ms Hardham said. “This has the potential to put Victoria back on the map in terms of therapeutic jurisprudence and will achieve significant cost reductions to government by providing the opportunity to focus on prevention and early intervention.”

Last week StarWeekly reported that the new law courts wouldn’t open early next year as expected, after funding needed to operate them was deferred in the state budget.

In recent correspondence seen by Star Weekly , Court Services Victoria (CSV) executive director major projects, Tony Michele, informed Wyndham council chief executive, Stephen Wall, that while the $271 million building was still on track to be completed in November, the official opening

in March 2025 would be pushed back indefinitely. In response, the state government said it was in discussions with CSV about when the new courts would be operational, but didn’t deny it would be delayed.

Md Hardham said West Justice welcomed the new Wyndham Law Courts when funding was first allocated in 2020, as the current Werribee Magistrates Court was no longer fit for purpose. However, she said the focus on bricks and mortar had come at the expense of other areas of the justice system.

“Our concern for the current development is that there has been a significant investment in the police station and law courts but an underinvestment in the therapeutic services required to support the community who

Maureen stars in the Boy from Oz

The Boy From Oz musical is coming to Melbourne, with a Hoppers Crossing local one of the stars of the production.

The musical is a true story about Peter Allen, one of Australia’s most beloved entertainers.

The musical follows his career and life with Judy Garland and Liza Minelli through bars, clubs, and concerts all across the world.

Maureen Andrew from Hoppers Crossing, is a musical theatre legend who was in the original The Boy from Oz with Hugh Jackman, and now plays Peter Allen’s mother.

With over 50 years of industry experience as an actor, singer, dancer, producer, and director, Ms Andrew has been impressed by the standards the cast is carrying into this production.

“Rehearsals are awesome, considering that so many of the cast are professionals in so many other fields, teachers, nurses, scientists, students, it is simply phenomenal how much can be achieved within a limited time frame compared with the rehearsal times available for fully funded shows,” she said.

“I was lucky enough to tour with Hugh Jackman’s Boy From Oz in the role of Josie Mann, who owned the New England Pub where young Peter started his career.

“I was also ‘cover’ for Marion Woolnough, Peter’s Mum, and Colleen Hewitt was our Marion. Colleen never missed a performance so this run with Theatrical Inc. gives me the opportunity to play such a pivotal role in the show.

Point Cook’s karate kids

A pair of young Wyndham martial artists are fundraising so they can afford to take on the world’s best in Japan later this year.

Isaac Ralph and Preshena Uthaya Kumar are two local karate students from the Point Cook Point Cook Branch of the Japanese Karate Association who have been selected to compete at World Karate Championships in Takasaki in October. Both 12-year-old Isaac and 23-year-old Preshena have developed into two of the best karate exponents at the Point Cook Dojo under the tutelage of Sensei Bryan Zaldarriaga, but in order to pay for the accommodation and travel needed to compete internationally,bothareseekingdonationsand sponsorship from the Wyndham community.

Among those who have jumped on board their cause is Point Cook MP Mathew Hilikari.

“The whole community can be proud of these extraordinary athletes, as well as their Sensei, Byran,” he said.

“To have two participants headed to the World Championships from the same Dojo

speaks to the supportive teaching and learning environment, and Preshena and Isaac’s commitment to Karate. Two humble members ofourcommunitywhoshouldbecongratulated for making it to the World Championships, a huge achievement.”

MalaysianbornPreshenamovedtoAustralia in 2012 and is currently within her final year of her nursing degree. She began competing in Australia at age 15 and won her first national title in 2018 and her first Dan belt in 2020.

Along with this success, Preshena appreciates the self-defence, mental discipline and appreciation of the culture than she has been able to learn throughout her time at the Point Cook Dojo.

“It’s very emotional but very rewarding.”

Another local from Melbourne’s west in the production is West Footscray’s Tara Lichtenstein. Originally from America, she has travelled to Australia for opportunities such as this one, and she is bringing her rich musical theatre background into the production.

The show will play from July 6 to July 21 at the National Theatre Melbourne in St Kilda.


Gerald Lynch

interact with the justice system,” said Ms Hardham who highlighted family violence as an example. “It’s intended that there is a specialist family violence court at the new Wyndham Law Courts, so it’s therefore critical that there are family violence services to refer the victim survivors and perpetrators to in order to ensure that the family violence issues are addressed.”

“At this stage these services are either non-existent or subject to long wait lists.”

A state government spokesperson said more than $5.9 million in local crime prevention projects had been funded in Wyndham and $56.7 million for family violence service deliveryinthewesternMelbournearea,which includes Wyndham.

Businesses or individuals that are wishing to sponsor Isaac or Preshena can contact Daniel Ralph at 0423 326 498. Donations can be made online at: isaac-ralph/lets-get-isaac-to-the-world-karatechampionships-in-japan and https://gofund. me/9b60b04d

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Point Cook MP, Mathew Hilakari with Isaac Ralph, Sensei Bryan Zaldarriaga and Preshena. (Supplied) West Footscray’s Tara Lichtenstein and Hoppers Crossing’s Maureen Andrew have big roles in the play. Photo at the Milking Station in Footscray. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 410898_01

Two Wyndham tobacco attacks

Police are investigating attacks on businesses in Werribee and Hoppers Crossing on Tuesday morning.

Emergency services were called to a tobacconist on Tarneit Road, Werribee, just after 4am on June 11, where a ramming and attempted arson attack had occurred.

AblackSUVhadbeenreversedintothefront securityrollershutterofthetobacconist,before thedriverfledonfoot,leavingthevehicleatthe

scene, police said.

An hour later, a shisha supplies business on Costas Drive, Hoppers Crossing, was set on fire.Apasser-bymanagedtoextinguishthefire before emergency services arrived.

No one was inside either building at the time of the attacks and no one was injured.

Investigators are treating both incidents as targeted attacks, but said it’s too early to determine if they are linked.

There have been more than 60 arson attacks on tobacco stores, supply outlets, restaurants

and reception centres in Victoria since March last year, with police making 65 arrests.

Among the attacks was another fire in Hoppers Crossing in August last year, where a tobacconist on Hogans Road was destroyed.

Shortly afterwards, Victoria Police establishedTaskforceLunartotargetorganised crime groups involved in the illicit tobacco trade in Victoria.

Comprised of a range of specialist investigators, Taskforce Lunar draws on resources from the Gang Crime Squad, Arson

Plating up Persian heritage on TV

Hamed Allahyari’s Sunshine Cafe, ‘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 asylumseekerafterfleeingIran,andhassince 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 three of the ABC show, ‘Extra-Ordinary Things’. 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.Ithinkit’s[the]journeyofmylife.Maybe it has a sad story, but at the end I’m happy.”

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

Hannah Hammoud

Basketballers on their way to Paris

A pair of Wyndham athletes are heading off to compete in the upcoming Olympics, but unlike other locals who’ve been selected for Paris 2024, these two won’t be wearing green and gold.

Rather, Wyndham basketballers Kuany Ngor Kuany and Mackuei Puondak will be wearing the black and white of South Sudan when they take to the court in Paris next month.

Kuany and Mackuei are among six Melbourne-based players who will represent the Bright Stars at the 2024 Games and were farewelled at a special reception hosted by Wyndham council in Werribee last week.

“I was delighted to meet with members of the South Sudan National Basketball team on Friday 31 May at a Meet and Greet at Wyndham’s Civic Centre and congratulate them personally on making the team headed for the 2024 Paris Olympics,” said Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera of the evening.

This is the first time South Sudan have qualified for the Olympics and not only are Kuany and Mackuei be part of the history making squad, but Kuany also has the honour of being captain.

We have amazingly talented basketballers right on our doorstep,” said Cr Barrera of the pair.

“It was a pleasure to meet both of them in person and hear about their personal stories and basketball journey before they depart back to South Sudan for an intensive training camp.

On behalf of Wyndham City and the wider community we wish the South Sudan National Basketball team the very best of luck and every success in the 2024 Paris Olympics.”

South Sudan plays its first game against Puerto Rico on July 28.

and Explosives Squad, Echo Taskforce, VIPER Taskforce, Criminal Proceeds Squad and Financial Crime Squad.

The taskforce also works closely with regional police, as well as a range of external agencies such as the ABF, Australian criminal Intelligence Commission, AFP and Australian Taxation office.

Investigations into both the Werribee and Hoppers Crossing attacks are ongoing.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Three arrests in crackdown

Three people were arrested during a two-day operation targeting high risk family violence offenders in Wyndham and Melbourne’s west.

Operation Lift involved detectives from the Westgate Family Violence Investigation Unit and Family Violence Command apprehending perpetrators known to actively avoid police detection. Suburbs targeted during the operation included Williams Landing, Werribee, Point Cook and Tarneit, as well as Delahey and Harkness.

During the operation three men were arrested for offences including contravening a safety notice, aggravated assault and criminal damage.

Two were charged on summons, while the third was charged and bailed to appear at court at a later date.

Police also served seven intervention orders; executed four outstanding bench warrants to those who failed to appear at court for family violence offences and executed four whereabouts for those wanted in relation to ongoing family violence investigations.

Westgate Family Violence Investigation Unit Detective Acting Sergeant Katerina Barisic said last week’s operationformedpartofpolice’songoing commitment in responding to family violence and managing perpetrators.

“We are absolutely committed to holding family violence perpetrators to account,” Detective Acting Sergeant Barisic said.

“That’s why we’ll continue to run these targeted operations to send a clear message to perpetrators: violence will be not tolerated. To victim-survivors, know that when you’re ready, we have a dedicated team of detectives at Westgate who will be there to support and protect you.”

Support is available 24 hours a day through Safe Steps on 1800 015 188 or emailing

SalamaTea cafe owner, Hamed Allahyari with his zinc plate. (Damjan Janevski) 411886_04 Cade Lucas Wyndham based South Sudan Olympic basketballers, Kuany Ngor Kuany (left) and Mackuei Puondak, farewelled by Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera last week. (supplied)

Nizam’s dream selection

Nizam Mazlan, 37, of Wyndham Vale, thought he would never play football again. Now he’s training to represent Australia at the inaugural Transplant Football World Cup.

When Mazlan was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease his quality of life decreased rapidly.

Trying to juggle full-time work and dialysis treatments left very little time to do what he loved or spend time with his growing family.

In 2021, Mazlan got the life-changing call thathewasgoingtoreceiveakidneytransplant.

Post-transplant, Mazlan felt like a whole new person began living life to the absolute fullest.

A football fan since childhood, Mazlan was thrilled when he learned about the Transplant Australia Football Club and even more thrilled whenselectedtorepresentAustraliaatthe2024 Transplant Football World Cup in Italy.

“It is a great honour to be part of the World Cupteam,thisistheopportunityofalifetime,” he said.

“I want to make my donor proud and give hope to people currently on dialysis waiting for a transplant.”

The Transplant Football World Cup is an initiative started by the World Transplant Games Federation that provides a new and exciting international event for transplant football players.

Teamscomposedofheart,lung,liver,kidney, pancreas, and bone marrow recipients will come together for a week-long celebration of the gift of life in Cervia, Italy.

Men and women of all ages are eligible to compete in the seven-a-side competition, which will follow the FIFA World Cup format.

TheteamwillbecoachedbyformerA-League professional player, Josh Rose.

Rose, who amassed over 350 professional

games in a 17-year career including many years at the Central Coast Mariners, said he was inspired to lead the team after his brother Luke had two kidney transplants.

“When you look at the team on the pitch you would have no understanding of the health battles they have faced,” Rose said.

“They are truly inspiring, and we hope to give the World Cup a real shake.”

Participation at the Transplant Football

Sit back and sip on a free coffee

Every Thursday in June.

Simply spend $30 or more in centre between 11am – 2pm to receive a complimentary small coffee and treat (while stocks last).*

World Cup is self-funded. If you would like to support Mazlan on his journey to the Transplant Football World Cup, please visit, https://transplant-australia-football-club.

There are currently 1,800 Australians waiting for a life-saving transplant. To register asanorganandtissuedonor,visithttps://www. and share your decision with your family.

Bachar Houli receives OAM

From page 1. *See website for T&C’s. Excludes supermarkets.

Hoppers Crossing Shopping Centre 24 Old Geelong Road Hoppers Crossing VIC 3029

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.

“It was a challenging time for the community 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’s west is in the works, and expected to be open from next year.

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.

Wyndham Vale footballer and kidney transplant recipient, Nizam Mazlan, will play for Australia at the 2024 Transplant Football World Cup. (Supplied)

From left, Helen Allen - Grange Community Centre Board of Governance, Daniel

- acting CEO Grange Community Centre and Keir Paterson, CEO Neighbourhood Houses Victoria (Supplied)

Survey is in the house

Neighbourhood house participants are being put front and centre through a new survey to help state government better understand their needs.

Neighbourhood Houses Victoria hopes the survey will help it gain insights that will help inform program improvements.

Neighbourhood Houses offer programs and activities such as food banks, community gardens, arts and craft classes, health and wellbeing activities, government services, maternalchildhealthandoccasionalchildcare.

Along with surveys, tech upgrades will also be funded so Neighbourhood Houses Victoria can conduct the surveys more often and improve data collection.

Carers and Volunteers Minister Ros Spence said funding Neighbourhood Houses was important to help keep community spirit high.

“Neighbourhood Houses provide a safe place for people to upskill, get creative, give back to

their community, and most importantly, create meaningful connections with others,” she said.

“We know the true value of the service Neighbourhood Houses provide is immeasurable – it’s impossible to quantify the way they can pull someone out of the depths of loneliness and into a welcoming and nurturing environment.”

OnWednesdayJune5,MsSpencewasjoined by Tarneit MP Dylan Wight at the Grange Community Centre in Hoppers Crossing to launch the survey.

In 2023 alone, the centre delivered 138 social connection and recreational sessions; 174 health/wellbeingsessions;approximately440kg of food relief/pantry items and approximately $6000 worth of food and grocery vouchers among many other services.

“Grange Community Centre does fantastic work and we’re making sure they can continue supporting the community,” Mr Wight said.


Carjack arrest

Queensland police arrested a South Australian man in relation to a series of alleged carjackings and attempted carjackings in the Werribee area late last month. The 32 year old man was arrested in South Brisbane on June 6, following a series of aggravated incidents that occurred in Werribee, Little River and Point Cook on May 29. Police from multiple states co-operated to track down the man as he made his way from Victoria into South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland. Victorian Police will fly to Brisbane in the coming days to apply for the man’s extradition.

Tarneit follow

A man has been charged after police spotted a vehicle allegedly speeding through Hoppers Crossing, Point Cook, Werribee and Tarneit on June 4. Police said the Toyota Hiace was first observed travelling east on Sayers Road, Tarneit about 11.30pm. It’s alleged the vehicle was clocked at speeds at up to 130 km/h while being followed by the police air wing. The driver was arrested after allegedly dumping the van at the Tarneit station carpark and trying to flee on foot. A 40-year-old Hoppers Crossing man has been charged with theft of motor vehicle, dangerous driving and other driving offences.


Wyndham Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly

Aneet Kohli is the Principal Solicitor & founder of Kohli & Co. Lawyers

She is fierce and her passion for law can be seen through her dedication for her work and results achieved. With national & international legal exposure she masters legal field. Admitted in Punjab & Haryana High Court in Chandigarh, India in 2009, she pursued her passion for law after migrating to Australia. She is a firm believer that our success depends upon the success of our clients, our people, and the communities in which we live.

In January 2021, Aneet Kohli embarked on a remarkable journey by establishing Kohli & Co Lawyers, a firm dedicated to providing exceptional legal services. Located in the heart of Williams Landing. Kohli & co lawyers is successful legal firm, where Harveen Singh (Husband) is managing daily business operations and Aneet kohli main concentration is in the legal work.

Specialising in Family Law, Criminal Law, Commercial Litigation and Property Settlements Kohli & Co Lawyers is committed to guiding clients through some of

the most challenging times in their lives with compassion and expertise.

By offering tailored legal solutions and empathetic support, Kohli & Co Lawyers ensures that their clients feel heard, respected, and empowered to make informed decisions.

Aneet’s dedication to her legal practice extends beyond the courtroom. She actively participates in community outreach programs, offering pro bono services to those in need. Our Solicitors can also provide legal advice in English, Hindi, Punjabi ,Tamil & Albanian language, which is very convenient for the community to understand in their own language

Kohli & Co Lawyers stands as a testament to the power of determination, expertise, and a commitment to making a difference. As they continue to grow, their mission remains clear: to empower the community through exceptional legal services and unwavering support.

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Dreamtime comes true

It mightn’t have the prestige of an exhibition in a famous gallery, but as far as audiences go, having your art displayed at the MCG is hard to top.

That was the experience of Point Cook artist Russellina Puruntatameri recently when her artwork featured on Essendon’s jumper for their Dreamtime at the G clash against Richmond on Saturday, May 25.

“Oh it’s really big,” said Russellina of her work being displayed to more than 80,000 at the MCG and millions more on TV for the annual blockbuster, the culmination of the AFL’s Sir Doug Nicholls Indigenous Round.

All those watching would’ve seen the Bombers win the game with thick white lines emblazoned across their traditional black and red.

Russellina said the design was typical of the art she learnt growing up on the Tiwi Islands north of Darwin.

“There’s not much dots, there’s a lot of lines,” she said of how Tiwi art it differs from other types of Indigenous painting.

“It’s similar to the Western Arnhem art but the lines are a lot bigger and thicker.”

The daughter of famed Tiwi artist, Nina Puruntatameri, Russellina was schooled in Tiwi art from an early age and despite moving to Melbourne with her husband and children six years ago, connections from back home helped get her artwork on football jumpers.

“My good friend I went to school with he had a friend who worked at the Carlton Football Club and he put my name forward,” said Russellina who then got a call from Essendon asking her to do the same.

She ended up doing Indigenous jumpers for

the two great rivals at the same time, the Blues wearing her design last year and the Bombers this.

Russellina’s own allegiances though lie with Geelong.

So could she end up designing the Cats

jumper for Sir Doug Nicholls Indigenous Round in 2025?

“Oh, I hope, I hope,” she said.

“That’s on my list.”

For more of Russellina’s art, visit:https://

Donation drive for dignity

Community centres across Wyndham are uniting to support people experiencing homelessness by holding a donation drive.

Personal care items and long-life food items donated in the drive will then be distributed in dignity packs to those in need. The dignity pack donation drive is being coordinated by Wyndham council in the lead up to Homelessness Week from Monday, August 5 to Sunday ,August 11.

Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera, said all community centres in Wyndham will be accepting donations between June 3 and August 5.

“Donations are needed,” Cr Barrera said. “Essential items such as toiletries including shampoo, conditioner, soap, moisturiser, face washers, towels, blankets, shaving equipment, new underwear, beanies, scarves, and female sanitary items can be donated. Long life food products including tin and canned items, soup, rice and noodles can be donated.”

Cr Barrera called on Wyndham residents to show their generosity to the less fortunate in the community.

“If you can, please donate a personal care item. It is a small gesture that can makeadifferencetopeopleexperiencing homelessness.”

Volunteers are also needed to help assemble the dignity packs and those interested are encouraged to contact the Dianella Community Centre.

Details: homelessness-week

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Point Cook Indigenous artist Russellina Puruntatameri helped design AFL jumpers during the recent Indigenous Round. (Damjan Janevski) 412176_01

Care support group celebrates

Carers support organisation, The Watton Group, celebrated its 10th anniversary late last month.

The group held a morning tea with Indigenous cultural performances at Central Park Community Centre in Hoppers Crossing to commemorate its first decade in existence.

Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera and representatives from Carers Victoria, and Tandem Carers were also there to mark the occasion, the significance of which wasn’t lost on Watton Group facilitator, Patricia Tot. “It’s a big achievement, a major achievement,” Ms Tot said.

“When we started in 2014 we only had five people and now we’ve got 28 members.”

The Watton Group is a not-for-profit organisation that supports carers in Wyndham, offering them a place to socialise, relax, meet like minded people and share information.

“From the feedback I’ve received, we are one of a kind in Wyndham,” said Ms Tot of the impact the group has made since 2014. She said the 10th anniversary was particularly important given that period included the dark days of the pandemic.

“We survived COVID by doing online Zoom meetings and trivia so we kept the connection,” said Ms Tot of how they got through that difficult period.

Ms Tot made a speech at the celebration, before a performance by First Nations artists and then a celebratory cake provided by an esteemed guest.

“The mayor, she surprised us, she helped serve the cake to everybody,” said Ms Tot of Cr Barrera’s gesture.

Anothersurprisewasreceivingacertificate of appreciation acknowledging the group

“We appreciate and are grateful for the much needed respite and advocacy services provided to us in different ways by organisations like Carers Victoria, Tandem Carers, Wyndham City Council and Wyndham Community and Learning Centre and Quantin Binah Community Centre,” Ms Tot said in her speech.

“I would like to take this opportunity to

YOUR NEW CAREER ... starts here

acknowledge the valuable and economic contribution that carers make to society so they should be supported to enjoy good health and social wellbeing”.

As for the next decade of the Watton Group, Ms Tot wasn’t looking that far ahead. “Oh my god that’s a long way away. Maybe five years,” she laughed.

Women of the west wanted

After another successful edition of the Sons of the West men’s health program earlier this year, Wyndham council, Western Leisure Services and the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation want women to get involved too.

where participants hear from various experts each week on a range of health topics, including nutrition, social inclusion, and mental fitness,” Cr Barrera said.

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.

The Daughters of the West - Free Fitness Program begins again next month, the only edition for 2024.

The program provides a series of informative, fun and hands-on workshops for women aimed at improving their health and wellbeing.

Held at Eagle Stadium in Werribee from July 17, the program will run for 10 weeks and provide participants with the tools and knowledge to improve their physical and mental health and wellbeing through a series of workshops, presentations and events.

Wyndham mayor Jennie Barrera urged women of all ages, backgrounds and abilities to register.

“Each session is approximately two hours,

“Following the educational component of the program, participants engage in various activities designed to build connection with one another. This is then followed by exercise sessions at a level tailored to each participants’ ability, ensuring everyone has the chance to get moving.”

Cr Barrera said the benefits of the program went beyond just health and fitness.

“So often the support of others helps us on our health and wellbeing journey. This program helps create a sense of community – I encourage those new to Wyndham and those looking to broaden their support group to join.”

Details: au/foundation/programs/daughters-of-thewest

Cade Lucas

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

12681381-AP15-24 Daughters of the West begins on July 17. (Supplied) 412374_01
from Tandem Carers. Cade Lucas Indigenous performers. (supplied) CEO of Carers Victoria Judith Abbott with Wyndham Mayor Jennie Barerra. Patricia Tot and Wyndham Mayor Jennie Barerra. (supplied) Patricia Tot and Janelle Faulkner, a former staff member of Carers Victoria, cut the anniversary cake.

Little waterbuck melts hearts

she stays close to the other waterbuck herd. Some of her favourite places are in the middle of the savannah eating lots of grass or hanging out in an area called the ‘keyhole’, which is behind a large group of trees.”

Nziza arrived from Monarto Safari Park in South Australia and is thriving in her surroundings at Werribee Open Range Zoo.

There’s a lot of love at Werribee Open Range Zooforapreciousnewarrival–alittleantelope with a special heart-shaped nose who leaves a trail of hearts wherever she goes.

Nziza [pronounced: N-zee-zah], a one-year-old waterbuck who arrived at the zoo last month, is making a distinct mark on the zoo’s savannah by imprinting heart-shaped prints on the ground with her dainty hooves.

Werribee Open Range Zoo Savannah keeper Sophie Gray said Nziza is quickly becoming a darling of the savannah.

“Nziza has a cute little black nose that looks exactlylikealoveheart,whichreallystandsout because it is surrounded by a contrasting white ring around it,” Ms Gray said.

“She also has cloven hooves, meaning each hoof is split into two toes. The two toes are round at the front with an adjoining point at the back, which leaves a heart-shaped print behind as she explores the savannah.”

Ms Gray said Nziza’s trail of hearts are more visible in the winter months on the soft wet ground.

“Nowistheperfecttimetotryandfindthem – but the trick is to try and find Nziza first,” Ms Gray said.

“Waterbuck are quite elusive but it’s really rewarding when you get to see them up close and how fluffy their ears are. At the moment,

“Nziza is really beautiful, she’s super confident and bold and she’s really keeping the keepers on our toes,” Ms Gray said.

“She’s noticeably smaller than the other waterbuck and getting along with the other animals on our savannah including herds of rhinoceros, giraffe, zebra, ostrich and other antelope species.”

Common waterbuck are native to the forests, savannah, shrubland and grasslands of southernandeasternAfrica.Theyinhabitareas alongside rivers, lakes and valleys and there are up to 80,000 residing in the wild.

Most species tend to have one superpower thatsupportstheirsurvival,butwaterbuckhave two. Not only do they possess speed like most antelope, they also have the unique advantage ofbeingabletosecreteanunpleasantoilysmell from their skin to avoid predators.

Visitors have the opportunity to see Nziza and her trail of hearts on a savannah bus tour that runs throughout the day and are included with entry.

Nziza, a one-year-old waterbuck who arrived at the zoo from South Australia last month, is making a distinct mark on the zoo’s savannah by imprinting heart-shaped prints on the ground with her dainty hooves (inset).

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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.

ForNewZealanderslikeAngela,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 workhasfocusedonassistingNewZealanders 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 socialsecuritysystemwasanon-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)

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 alreadyexcessiveworkloadstospreadteaching 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.

Firefighter ‘humbled’ by honour

CFA north-west region deputy chief officer Gavin Thompson has been awarded an Australia Fire Service Medal as part of the King’s Birthday Honours.

Mr Thompson, who has been part of the CFA for more than 35 years, overseas 246 fire brigades and more than 10,000 volunteer members in an area stretching from Port PhillipBayatWerribeetotheMurrayRiverand SouthAustralianborder.Heisalsoalevelthree incident controller and regional controller, as well as a regional agency commander and state agency commander, providing operational support and direction across all levels of emergency management including response to major fires and significant floods.

In a statement, the CFA said Mr Thompson was a respected figure who has not only shown exceptional commitment to developing the necessary technical, administrative and leadership skills needed to personally excel, but has also made it his mission to support and develop those around him.

Mr Thompson said he was humbled by the award.

“Whilst I am receiving this award, it is a testament to the great people I have had the opportunity to work with during my time in CFA,” he said.

Mr Thompson joined Bayswater Fire Brigade as a junior volunteer in 1986 and transferred to Boronia Fire Brigade as a senior member in


In 2000, he joined CFA as a recruit career firefighter and across the next eight years movedthroughtheranksatpostingsacrossthe state including Shepparton, Chelsea, Patterson River and Dandenong. He was promoted to officer in charge of Dandenong Fire Brigade in 2008, and in 2010 and 2011 he was seconded to Falls Creek Fire Brigade, managing firefighting response planning and capability in the alpine region during the Victorian snow seasons.

Following this he was promoted to an operations manager role at CFA’s Burwood headquarters, before becoming north-west deputy chief officer in 2016.

“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.”?

RACV tips to protect tools

RACV is urging tradies in Victoria, including those Wyndham, to check the security of their vehicles and properties.

The Crime Statistics Agency has reported that over $33 million worth of hand and power tools were stolen from Victorian tradies in 2023, a 37 per cent increase on the previous year. In total 18,626 power tools and 14,911 hand tools were stolen across Victoria in 2023.

RACV general manager home, Bill Bloodworth, outlines several steps to deter thieves from targeting tools.

“To secure your tools in a vehicle, use a robust truck bed or a lockable toolbox, anchored to the vehicle with a strong security chain if portable,” Mr Bloodworth said.

“Marking your tools with your identification details, such as your name and driver’s licence number, makes them difficult for thieves to sell, easier for you to report as missing, and increases the likelihood of recovery by police.”

RACV also suggests the use of small GPS trackers on high-value items, allowing owners to monitor the exact whereabouts of their tools through a smartphone app.

“Toreducethechanceoftheft,always ensure your tools are not left visible in your vehicle. This recommendation extends to equipment stored on the roof, such as ladders, which should ideally be kept inside your home or garage at night.”

Wednesday, 12 June, 2024 WYNDHAM STAR WEEKLY 11 STARWEEKLY.COM.AU NEWS Keeping up to date with your local news has never been so easy... Simplyregistertodayandgetourlatest news articlesandDigital EditionsinyourinboxforFREE SenttoyourinboxeveryWednesday 12665745-AA08-24
Gavin Thompson has been awarded a Australian Fire Service Medal. (Supplied)

Melton’s best kept secret garden?

It’s a Thursday morning and a group of fluoro-clad, hat wearing volunteers are gatheredunderanexpansive,shadyeucalyptus tree near the lake within Melton Botanic Garden (MBG) enjoying a morning tea break with freshly baked goods and a cuppa. As a volunteer for over a year for the Friends of the Melton Botanic Garden, I am but one of many who have played an active role in developing and maintaining the garden.

The gardens encompass a 25-hectare area of natural beauty and endless discovery made up of indigenous plants and exotic plants from similar climatic conditions. Melton Botanic Garden can be discovered tucked in between Melton’s High Street and the freeway. The land on which the garden is developed is on Kurun jang balug land of the Wurundjeri-willam clan, a clan of the Woi wurrung people. These rich, diverse gardens celebrated their 20th anniversary earlier this year.

The garden is very popular with dog walkers, people exercising and young children exploring the nature space playground which is beautifully designed with natural materials and overlooking the lake. Many community groups visit on a regular basis to enjoy the peaceful public space.

I work in the Koori Student Garden, a space originally designed by a team made up of a landscape designer and a group of Melton primary and secondary Aboriginal students. The garden is designed around a

serpentine-typeshapewithgravelpathsleading into circular spaces and planted throughout with indigenous species of Melbourne’s Western Plains.

A typical day might find me pruning the correas, cutting back the rampant salt bush varieties and mulching the garden beds with the pruning cuttings in a method called ‘chop and drop’. There is very little irrigation throughout the garden and plants are watered

only during their establishment phase, for the first year or so.

While it is impossible to do justice to the variety and expansiveness of the whole garden, some of the plant collections include: Dryland Eucalypts, West Australian, South Australian, EasternAustralianDryland,SouthernAfrican, Mediterranean region, Californian, Central and South American, Victorian Volcanic Plains and Bushfoods.

A fantastic resource developed in 2011 is the Garden Explorer | Melton Botanic Garden on which you can explore the specific name and details of all the plants found within the garden.Thereisevenanextensiveplantnursery on site where you can pick up plants for your own garden. Opening hours for the nursery are 9.30am-12.30pm Tuesdays, Thursdays, and 2nd and 4th Sundays.

In the South African beds, you can find Cussonia paniculatas or Highveld Cabbage Trees.Thisdistinctiveevergreentreeisstriking in the garden, especially against the backdrop of rocks and boulders. The cabbage tree has an unusual shape, interesting, gnarled bark and stunning, large, grey-green leaves. The tree is primarily from South Africa and can grow up to 5m in height although it tends to be slow growing. Did you know that the Zulu name, Zoeloekiepersol, refers to the cabbage tree as goats’ food?

From January to April cabbage trees bear small, green, stalked flowers; in short dense spikes, making up a large, branched inflorescence at the end of the trunk or branches. Flowers are followed by fleshy and purple-maroon fruits, which mature in May to June. The flowers produce a sticky nectar that birds love to devour. The thick root can be peeled and eaten raw as food or as a source of water (Van Wyk & Gericke 2000).

Pruning is completed in autumn and the new growth of leaves emerge from the pruning wound on the plant. The best method of propagationisbymeansofseedharvestedfrom fresh ripe fruits. Remember to allow room for the tubers to develop in the propagation pots. Seedlings can be transplanted at about 4 months but be very careful not to damage the fleshy roots when transplanting.

Melton Botanic Garden – A Public Car Park is located at 40 Lakewood Boulevard, Melton.

In the South African beds, you can find Highveld Cabbage Trees (bottom left). (Pictures: Damjan Janevski) 411705
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Wednesday, 12 June, 2024 WYNDHAM STAR WEEKLY 13 No. 189
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 1 How many extra teeth did Queen frontman Freddie Mercury have? 2
95th Academy Awards, which 91-year-old composer became the oldest Oscar nominee in any category? 3
final circle
Dante’s hell? 4
is the chief conductor of which orchestra? 6 What were the first living creatures to be sent to space in 1947? 7 Which artwork at the Louvre has its own mailbox for fan letters? 8 In what decade was the Taiwanese beverage bubble tea first released? 9 Which three Baz Luhrmann films has actor David Wenham
appeared in? 10
a substance that mimics both a solid and a liquid, is made by mixing water with what? 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 Using the nine letters in the grid, how many words of four letters or
No. 189
189 ACROSS 1
17 Pile (3) 19 Self-centred (10) 23 Women’s underwear and nightwear (8) 24 Doctor (6)
3 Highest rank (coll) (7)
Exercises (10) 6 – contract, a standardised forward contract (7) 7 Rampaging (7) 8 Scalpel users (8)
16 Logical (8) 18 Arcade game involving steel balls (7)
21 Against the law (7) 22 Throughway (6)
Close (4) PUZZLES
At the
Who is
in the
Which US state is the only one with a
The fictional Lydia Tár
15 words: Good 23 words: Very good 31 words: Excellent Today’s Aim:
AGO ARE ART ATE EGO END EVE GAL HEM HOE ICE ILL IRE KID LIE LYE PRO SEA SEE SHE TAX TEA UTE 4 LETTERS KNEW LASS LEER NOTE PASS POEM SEND SOAR SOUP TACT TASK TEEN WAIT XMAS 5 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:


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

Lions Club

The Lions Club of Point Cook meets at the Featherbrook Community Centre on the third Monday of the month at 7.30pm. The club is seeking to grow the Lions free vision screening in schools team. Volunteers are needed to work with the region’s schools in combating children’s undiagnosed vision issues. You do not have to be a Lions member but must obtain a working with children check.

■ Secretary Robert Eyton, 0417 549 684, or

Werribee Jazz Club

Join the Werribee Jazz Club on the second Sunday of the month, from 2pm to 5pm, for three hours of great music, dancing or relaxed listening. You can enjoy live bands featuring some of Australia’s best jazz musicians playing traditional, dixieland, swing, R’n’B and mainstream jazz. BYO nibbles, drinks available at moderate bar prices with complimentary tea and coffee. We are located at the Werribee Bowls Club, Watton Street, Werribee. Entry $22.

■ Jenny, 0419 558 481

Drumming classes

Community adult drumming class. If you ever wanted to try out your rhythmic skills, the first class is free and concessions apply for other classes. All hand drums supplied or BYO. No experience required, just bring an open heart and mind and enjoy making some great rhythms together. The class is friendly and welcoming to everyone. Thursdays, 7.30pm to 8.30pm, during school terms, at Saltwarter Community Centre, 153 Saltwater Parade, Point Cook. ■ 0411 028 077 or

Wyndham Ladies Probus

Retired or semi-retired ladies are invited to join this very active social group. Enjoy impressive monthly guest speakers, interesting monthly outings and many lunches where the development of friendships is encouraged. The Ladies Probus Club of Wyndham meets on the first Wednesday of each month at Hotel 520, Sayers Road, Tarneit, at 10am.

■ Pat, 0411 316 795

Laverton Community Choir

The choir is currently welcoming new members - especially male voices. If you love singing and would like to be part of a choir – come along and try out your vocal cords. There are no auditions and you don’t need to be able to read music. The group meets on Thursday evenings during school terms at Laverton P12 College, 91 Bladin Street, Laverton, from 7-9pm.

■ Sue, 0418 386 147 or

Point Cook VIEW

The Point Cook Day VIEW Club (for ladies) meets on the fourth Wednesday of the month at the Point Cook Library, 1-21 Cheetham Street, Point Cook. Members enjoy afternoon teas and outings. New members welcome. VIEW Is part of the Smith Family.

■ Catherine, 0407 726 852

Watton Group

A support group providing a social space for carers to get together in a safe and compassionate environment. Gives carers an opportunity to connect, share their experiences and offers emotional and practical support. The group meets at the Eco-Living Centre at 10am, every fourth Tuesday of the month.

■ Patricia, 0434 487 360, or

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

All Abilities Netball

All Abilities Netball for 10-to-25-year-olds is run by Wyndham Netball Association every Saturday morning during school terms, from 10.30am, on outside court 14 at Eagle Stadium, Ballan Road, Werribee. Intellectual, physical and social disabilities are catered for in a fun and supported group. Come and try your first session for free, with stadium entry $2.

■ Phil, 0437 078 739

Walking Netball

Walking Netball is a low impact, no running, no jumping version for those that love the fun, friendship and activity of a weekly game of netball. Sessions are run every Thursday during school terms, from 8pm, at Eagle Stadium, Ballan Road, Werribee. Come and try your first session for free, with stadium entry $2.

■ Phil, 0437 078 739

Wyndham Rotary

Wyndham Rotary welcomes people interested in helping people in need in the community. Interested in finding out more, come to the Italian Sports Club each Wednesday at 6.30pm for a meal, to share ideas and to work for a common cause.

■ Julie, 0406 196 630

With One Voice Wyndham Choir

With One Voice Wyndham Choir is a community choir open to all. The community choir welcomes all ages, abilities, faiths, cultures and genders and is directed by a very experienced and friendly professional conductor. Fun weekly rehearsals and amazing performance opportunities are provided. They sing for an hour and then have a cuppa. The first two visits are free; and then payment is by tax-deductible donation. Tuesday evenings, 7-8.30pm, at Wayaperri House, 106 Duncans Road, Werribee.


Adult community garden group

The group meets on the first Tuesday of the month, 10-11.30am, at Iramoo Community Centre, 84 Honour Avenue, Wyndham Vale. Head down and join them as they maintain their rejuvenated community garden.

Planting and harvesting produce that they grow.

■ 8742 3688

Seniors House of Fun

The Grange Community Centre invites seniors of Wyndham to its weekly Seniors House of Fun. This is a free program running every Friday, 11am-12.30pm, at The Grange Community Centre, 260-280 Hogans Road, Hoppers Crossing.

■ Vanessa, 8742 8000, or

Seniors club

The Werribee Senior Citizens Club meets at 80 Lonsdale Circuit, Hoppers Crossing. The group is open to all people 55-plus and it runs on Wednesdays, 10am-noon. Entry: $2, includes morning tea.

■ 0403 041 499

Diabetes Support Group

The Werribee Diabetes support provides an opportunity to hear from experts on how to manage your diabetes, to share information on diabetes and to engage with other diabetics Meetings are at the old council shire buildings at 10am every second Friday of the month.

■ Bob, 0409 252 872

Hoppers Crossing Ladies Probus

The friendly and vibrant group meet at Hotel 520 on the second Wednesday of each month from 10am. They have a guest speaker each month as well as social lunches, outings and theatre trips.

■ 0408 123 669

U3A Werribee

The group is a not-for-profit community organisation for semi-retired and retired Wyndham residents. They hold a variety of classes-activities specifically designed for seniors, including, light physical and mental wellbeing sessions, arts, games and craft, and general classes such as current affairs, history and lunch groups. Most classes-activities are held at Wyndham community centres.

■ Rick, 0402 299 220

Lions Club

Lions Club of Werribee meets at the RSL

Club, 2a Synnot Street, Werribee on the first and third Wednesday of the month at 6.30pm.

■ Jorge, 0433 566 575

Bingo for all

The Werribee RSL hosts Bingo every Monday between 12.30-2.30pm.

■ 9741 5525

Western Budgerigar Club

The Western Suburbs Budgerigar Club meets at 7.30pm on the third Thursday of each month at Masonic Hall, 223 Watton Street, Werribee. Meet other members who are also passionate about breeding Budgerigars.

■ Don, 0414 975 862

Western Melbourne Men’s Chorus Do you like to sing? The Western Melbourne Men’s Chorus wants you! Be part of a rewarding fraternity of fellow amateur musicians serving the community, sharing comradery and having fun. Rehearsals at 7pm Tuesday evenings at St James Church, Hoppers Crossing.

■ Chris, 0400 414 215

Dementia Carers Group

IPC Health Dementia Carers Group is for people who care for someone with dementia or a similar condition associated with memory loss. Meetings are held montly, on the first Tuesday of the month, 12.30-2.30pm. At IPC Health Hoppers Crossing, 117-129 Warringa Crescent, Hoppers Crossing or at a café or restaurant depending on the group program. Carers can self-refer and can attend in person or via Zoom. Registration is essential.

■ IPC Health Hoppers Crossing, Leah Hewitt, Occupational Therapist or Joyce Chan, Allied Health Assistant, 1300 472 432 or complete the registration form at

Werribee River Association

New volunteers to support Landcare work along the Werribee River. A great way to give back, get outdoors and work at your own pace.

■ Lisa Field, 0433 559 530,, or


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 itsbeauty,andthisappliestoallcultures,”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

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

Cultural performance coming soon

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

Hakimameans‘Wisewoman’inArabic,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

theirvoicesanddrawinginspirationfromtheir 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 yearsago,andwasconfrontedbytheharshness of the Australian natural environment.

“When we arrived in Australia, we had to face almost every day hearing the news about alltheclimatechangeissueswiththehugefires 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

HopetounParklocalTanishaQuilliamis 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 exhibitfortheMooraboolcouncilaspart 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. “Ireallywantedtoshowcasethatbecause 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 renownedphotographerandcurator.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
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Application documents are available to view via Council’s website or at the Civic Centre: - advertising Wyndham City Council Civic Centre, 45 Princes Highway, Werribee, VIC 3030 between 9am and 4pm Monday to Friday

Any person who may be affected by the granting of the permit may object or make a submission to the Responsible Authority by post or in person or;

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If you object, the Responsible Authority will tell you of its decision. Council must make

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.

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

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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 two versions – front-wheel drive and all-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 the body sides, and a fully covered underbody.

ThebZ4X20-inchdoublefive-spokewheels, with contrasting black and machined finish and grey resin accents for a three-dimensional detailed look.

One of six exterior colours, the test car’s was 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)

Long weekend sporting action

While many competitions had the weekend off due to the King’s Birthday long weekend, there was still some sporting action across the west. Photographer Ljubica Vrankovic caught some of the action,

Green Gully’s Adolph Koudakpo. 412089_09 Western Suburbs’ Tatsuhiro Takezaki. 412101_03 Yarraville Seddon’s William Kliszewski. 412087_01 Altona North came away with the win against Point Cook. 412097_03 Western Suburbs and Sydenham Park had s draw. 412101_25 The ruck battle was important between Point Cook and Yarraville Seddon. 412087_23 West Point had to share the points with Truganina. 412096_15 Christopher Sutera and Gradi Masudi. 412097_01 Truganina’s Van Lal Sang Bualthang. 412096_01

Storm places firm focus on female development

Melbourne Storm is targeting Melbourne’s north-west as it forms its inaugural Storm female development program.

Following the success of the Female Footy Festival held at the State Rugby League and Community Centre in Broadmeadows, the Storm is now establishing a new pathway for female players in Victoria.

The Storm is holding three combines, the first which was in Broadmeadows on Sunday.

TheStormwesthubwillbeheldinWyndham on June 16, while the southeast hub combine will be held on June 23.

Storm’s female pathway program manager Pauline Poloai said it was exciting.

“There are 1300 females playing the game of rugby league in Victoria,” she said. “We know there are girls wanting to aspire to play NRLW.

“This Is a starting point of introducing females to our Storm family.”

Poloai said the Storm was preparing to launch an NRLW team for the 2028 season and they wanted to build the foundations now to get more Victorian females playing.

The three combine testing days gives the development squad selectors an opportunity to assess some key areas.

Hume municipality.

“Thiscomesoffthebackofthesedevelopment programs,” she said. “These programs give kids a first hand look to see what the Storm program is.

“We have got some good talent in the north and also in the west and south.”

Storm chief executive Justin Rodski said the new development program will help the club lay the foundations for a pathway to NRLW.

“This is an exciting time for the female game in Victoria and we are ready to find the best young talent in the state,” he said.

“We want to give Victorian players the chancetoplayatthehighestlevel,whetherthey come from rugby league or other codes.

“We know there is a lot of work to do to get the pathways rights, develop the talent we have in Victoria and have the facilities in place for our girls to train and play.

“There will be off field education,” she said. “We’ll also teach them the Storm system.”

Poloai said they had development programs for the men’s side, now they were looking to

They will identify the top 30 players and they will be part of a 12 week program overseen by Melbourne Storm coaches and staff, before heading off on a three-day tour of New South Wales for trial matches.

implement that for women.

She said they had targeted areas where they know there’s a lot of females playing the sport.

Poloai said it was important to have Victorian-born players as part of the Storm’s female program.

Just five Victorian-born players have played for the Storm in the NRL. Four are from the

West Point ‘re-evaluate’

West Point will reassess it’s FV state league 4 west goals in the mid season break after a tough first half of the season.

Playing in state league 4 for the first time, West Point sits in ninth spot with three wins, two draws and six losses.

CoachTomPetrevksisaiditcertainlyhadn’t been the season they were after so far.

“I’ve been disappointed with the first half of theseason,”hesaid.“We’vegotthreewinsand two draws which isn’t to the level we wanted.

“We’ve only been completely out of one of two games, it would be nice to be on the other side of some of those results.

“We haven’t quite hit the heights that we have wanted to.”

On Saturday, West Point faced the Truganina Hornets.

The match finished in a 2-2 draw after the Hornets led twice in the match.

“It was the story of our first half of the season,”Petrevksi said. “We were missing nine senior players which is massive when you only take 17 in.

“We gave a good account, but we couldn’t get a lead and hold a lead. We got an equaliser and then they went up again and we equalled again.

“We missed a lot of chances. We had a lot of players out and that is football, we still came away with one point, it’s not all doom and gloom.”

Petrevksi said one of the pleasing things out of all the absences was seeing the depth in the club.

He said they played four reserves players on the bench on Saturday who all played a role when they came on.

“We’ve got a few young kids coming through the reserves,” he said. “The depth is fantastic and it does make it easier when some of the quality isn’t there.”

Petrevksi said they would likely get some of those players missing back in the next few weeks while they would look whether they needed to add anyone to replace those who are out with long term injuries.

He said they were hoping things would change in the second half of the season.

West Point currently sits in ninth position, with the Hornets a spot further back.

“I would expect for us to be stronger in the second half of the season,” Petrevksi said.

“Hopefully we have some luck on our side in terms of what we can achieve.

“We’ll reset and re-evaluate what


“We can’t do that alone and will be working with our commercial and government partners to give our female future stars the best possible chance to wear the purple jersey in the future.”


Sports shorts


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.


The City West Falcons continued on their winning ways in the Victorian Netball League championship division on Wednesday night. Facing the Wilson Storage Southern Saints, the Falcons won 63-52. The difference in the match was the start of the second half when the Falcons shot eight goals in a row. The Falcons remain on top of the ladder.


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 he was injured.


Western Athletics Amy Cashin and Aliyah Canepa both come away with medals for the Oceania Athletics Championships. Cashin won the 3000 metre steeplechase as she continues to chase an Olympic spot, while Canepa threw a personal best in the open women’s hammer throw to win silver.

FOR MORE SPORT, VISIT Web: Wyndham Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly
Altona Roosters at the Female Footy Festival. (Supplied)
success looks like and get the boys into the frame of mind of what that success looks like.
want to be pushing into the top half of the competition.” Meanwhile in state league 2 north-west, Hoppers Crossing is still without a win after losing to Geelong Rangers, 4-0 on Friday night.
In state
3 north-west,
5 west,
win moves the Rangers four points clear of the Reds at the bottom of the table.
Point Cook lost to Altona North, 4-2, while in
Wyndham lost to Deakin University, 4-0.
Earmiase Melesse (Ljubica Vrankovic)_412096_03

Bulldogs slip up losing touch with the top two

Point Cook slipped further away from the top two in the Western Football League division 1 competition, with a loss to Yarraville Seddon on Saturday.

The two teams played off in a standalone match on Saturday, having had a bye the previous week as part of the split round.

Leading into the match, Bulldogs coach Clay Smith said the bye had come at a good time with a number of injuries.

Several of those players returned on Saturday.

With the competition one of the closest in years, every win is important at this point of the season.

The Bulldogs started the better of the two sides leading by three points at quarter time.

The Eagles managed to take an 11 point lead into the main break.

Eagles coach Brad Julier said he thought they played a pretty good four quarter performance.

“We got off to a good start but our inaccuracy kept the door open at half time. We got four goals in the third quarter to set it up for the last quarter.

“They were able to kick a couple later in the match to bring it back to 19 points.”

Billy Kolyniuk was the only multiple goalkicker for the Bulldogs with two goals.

Tyler Kolyniuk, Austin Hodge and Haiden Wallace were the best for the Bulldogs.

Julier said Zac Pritchard, Michael Selbsy and Akol Deng were some of their standouts in the win.

The win moves the Eagles into second place, onlybehindanundefeatedWerribeeDistricts.

Just12pointsseparatestheEaglesandPoint Cook Centrals, who sit bottom.

Point Cook sits in fourth spot, two games

back of the Eagles and a game clear of Point Cook Centrals.

“The win puts us two games clear of Point Cook,” Julier said. “Had they won they would have been equal with us.

“We’re sitting second and have Spotswood this week and then it’s the halfway mark of the season.

“We’ll see where we sit after this one.”

The Bulldogs this week face Hoppers Crossing, which is coming off two weeks off, having had the bye before the split round.

In other matches this weekend coming, Altona is on the road against Point Cook Centrals, Spotswood and Yarraville Seddon areplayingoffforthe‘BattleoftheBridge’and Werribee Districts plays Caroline Springs.

Parkside has the bye.

In division 2, the Suns face Sunshine Heights, Wyndhamvale plays Sunshine and Tarneit faces West Footscray.

Wyndham looking good

Wyndham’s depth has been on show in the Big V women’s state championship division.

Wyndham sits atop the ladder at the King’s Birthday weekend bye having continued to put some big scores on the board.

Coach Gerard Hillier said the break had come at the perfect time for them.

“We’ve had a bit of an illness, flu go through the team,” he said. “Amanda Paschal has been playing through injury the last couple of weeks.

“Our bench players have done a tremendous job and stepped up when they’ve needed to.

“We’ve still been getting wins with our bench players and kids are coming through.”

Hillier said there was a spread of players that had been stepping up and playing their roles when needed.

He said Mackenzie Drew was doing a good job coming on and holding down her position on the court, while Charlie McKinnon in her first season was also stepping up.

Bethany Theodore and Jasmine Goodman were a couple of others that had impressed him.

“They are coming off the bench and getting a good understanding of how we want to play andthepressurewewanttohave,”Hilliersaid.

Hillier said Paschal is putting out an even better season than what she did 12 months ago, when she won the most valuable award. She is averaging a competition high, 27.5 points per game.

Paschal rolled her ankle at training a few weeks ago and had managed to play through it, though on limited minutes.

“She rolled it and scored 30-plus points two days later,” Hillier said. “We weren’t sure that she was going to play.

“The other players are getting a better understanding of her game now and are complimenting the work that AP does, it makes us tougher to scout.

“She’s taken the next step up this season.

Training with the Bendigo Spirit in the off season has seen her play at a higher level and

big overall improvement in her leadership, which was always strong.”

Wyndham has a good test next couple of weeks against the Bulleen Boomers this Saturday and Bellarine Storm the following week.

Hillier said they know what areas they need to work on.

“They are second and third, it’ll be a good test for us,” he said. “At the offensive end we are averaging 95 per game which is really pleasing.


Wyndham’s men’s side which is also on top, will face the Blackburn Vikings on Saturday night.

Meanwhile, Wyndham had two sides compete in the National Junior Classic on the weekend.

The under-14 boys team finished third in their pool with one win from three games.

The under-18 boys also finished third in their pool with one win from their matches.

Werribee City’s tough run in the Victorian Premier League 1 continued on Friday night.

With just two wins for the season, every match is starting to become vital for the Bees as they try to avoid relegation, a position they know well in recent years.

On Friday night, the Bees faced mid-table Kingston City.

The game was over at half time, with Kingston City piling on four first half goals.

TheBeesmanagedtoscoretwosecond half goals to add some respectability to the scoreboard, but it was too little, too late with Kingston City winning 4-2.

Thomas Biss and Ibraham Mohamed were the goal scorers for the Bees.

The Bees remain in second bottom, two points clear of bottom side North Geelong Warriors.

They are four points behind 12th placed Caroline Springs George Cross.

Elsewhere in VPL1, Western United continued its good form with a 4-1 win against the Bentleigh Greens.

United led 1-0 at half time before piling on the goals in the second half to come away with a strong win.

United move into outright second with Northcote City and Preston Lions had a draw on Friday night. Melbourne Victory sits clear on top.

This week Werribee City hosts Brunswick City on Friday night, while Western United is away to Eastern Lions.

It’s been a big week for United’s academy team with four players announced as having signed A-League contracts with the club.

Wednesday, 12 June, 2024 WYNDHAM STAR WEEKLY 21
Another loss for the Bees
Mackenzie Lemon. (Ljubica Vrankovic) Nick Buykx. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 412087_04 Mackenzie Drew. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 403555_15

Werribee leads all game to win

Werribee continues to find ways to get wins on the board, this time overcoming Frankston in the Victorian Football League on Saturday.

The scoreboard shows a convincing win to the Tigers at Avalon Airport Oval, but the Dolphins made sure they had to work for it.

The Tigers led early and were able to extend the margin the first three quarters to lead by 34 points at three quarter time.

The Dolphins threw everything at the Tigers in the final quarter, but the home side was able to do enough to come away with a 13.9 (87)-8.11 (59) win.

Tigers coach Jimmy Allan said it was a really pleasing win.

“It was a hard fought win,” he said. “The scoreboard suggests it was responsibly convincing, but it was a good contest from start to finish.

“They are a team that works hard and works hard for each other.”

Allan said it was a hard slog all day and it was what they were prepared for going into the game.

He said they tried to play a keeping off sort of brand of footy but took it a bit too far in the first half.

“We overused it a bit,” he said. “We corrected that in the third quarter and played our best quarter of football for the game.

“They threw caution to the wind in the final quarter and challenged us. They took some risks but were able to score a couple later.”

Allan said while they showed good periods of play they have to make sure that they’re doing it for longer.

He said scoreboard pressure was the difference between the two sides in the end.

Dom Brew led from the front with 36 possessions. It was a special day for him as he played his 100th VFL match.

Allan said the midfielder means so much to the club.

“He bleeds the club,” he said. “He does the things that we value and is so important for us.

“We never want to let him down and it was a good day for him and his family.”

Great mate and former teammate Tom Gribble had the honour of presenting Brew with his 100th game jumper.

Allan said it was a surprise for Brew.

“They are great mates and I know it meant a lot to him,” he said. “He was quite emotional about the mates that he’s made along the journeyandhowimportantfootyisandwhere he has come from.

“He will cherish it forever.”

Hudson Garoni kicked four goals for the Tigers, while Jay Dahlhaus kicked three goals.

Allan said both were also among the best again.

“Louis Pinnuck at half back was good,” he said. “Jesse Clark was sick through the week but is in some good form down back.

“Jake Smith in the midfield has come into the side the last five to six weeks and done a job.

“Zac Banch is a small forward who keeps the pressure on.”

Werribee remains in third spot with eight wins from its 10 games.

It has a bye this week, which Allan isn’t sure

comes at a good time.

“Our form has improved the last couple of weeks,” he said. “I’m not sure if it’s good or not as you want to keep the momentum going, but

I’m not out there getting hit each week.

“We’ll give the guys a break and do something different this week.”


teams met on Anzac Day, with the Seagulls having a big win on that occasion.

Allan said this match would be a big one for them.

BARRO GROUP The framework will be a guide for staged development in the area and for attracting investment over the next 30 years. It will help to ensure the town centre meets the needs of the growing population in Tarneit with the centre ultimately providing a capacity of 8,000 jobs and a home to more than 10,000 people. Please register for an information session to find out more: • • Questions can be emailed to and feedback shared on the Loop by 20 March on
Tom Gribble presented Dom Brew with his 100th game jumper. (Belinda Vitacca Photography) Flynn Young gets a kick away. (Belinda Vitacca Photography)


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