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In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
When Netflix's 'Heeramandi' made it's big screen premiere in Melbourne last month, ASAC were invited along to witness the fun, grand, visual spectacle both on and off screen. Before even cities like New York and London, it was Melbourne that first got to taste the glamour and splendour of courtesan culture depicted in this special screening event of 'Heeramandi'. 
Right from the start, the beautiful venue of Drum Theatre, in south-eastern Dandenong, which is home to a sizeable South Asian community, was thrumming with life and packed to the brim. From the vibrant marigold flower archway to the ceilings decorated with flowing dupattas and chunnis, the hall was glowing with colour and vibrance.
Folklore and independence | Book Club Reviews ‘The Henna Artist’ by Alka Joshi
Nine winners were revealed from a shortlist of 40 finalists across the categories of Content Creator, Community & Advocacy, Business & Entrepreneurship, Sports & Fitness, Arts & Culture, STEM, Journalism & Literature, International (based overseas) and Global Impact (based in Australia).
In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
Nine winners were revealed from a shortlist of 40 finalists across the categories of Content Creator, Community & Advocacy, Business & Entrepreneurship, Sports & Fitness, Arts & Culture, STEM, Journalism & Literature, International (based overseas) and Global Impact (based in Australia).
In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
Nine winners were revealed from a shortlist of 40 finalists across the categories of Content Creator, Community & Advocacy, Business & Entrepreneurship, Sports & Fitness, Arts & Culture, STEM, Journalism & Literature, International (based overseas) and Global Impact (based in Australia).
The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) has launched and runs until the 20th August 2023. There are countless films to watch but which films should you see? Well look no further, we’ve curated a special list for you.
The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) has launched and runs until the 20th August 2023. There are countless films to watch but which films should you see? Well look no further, we’ve curated a special list for you.
The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) has launched and runs until the 20th August 2023. There are countless films to watch but which films should you see? Well look no further, we’ve curated a special list for you.
The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) has launched and runs until the 20th August 2023. There are countless films to watch but which films should you see? Well look no further, we’ve curated a special list for you.
Meet: Livleen Kathpal, a passionate member of the Australian South Asian Centre, a community of South Asian women and allies who are dedicated to creating positive change through entrepreneurship, creativity, and leadership.
ASAC Members Daizy Maan, Maneet Hora, Sehar Gupta, Priyanka Kaur
parvyn
Australian South Asian Centre is proud to welcome its newest member, Amarjeet Kaur Sharma, to our community of South Asian women and allies. Amarjeet is the host of the
Meet: Livleen Kathpal, a passionate member of the Australian South Asian Centre, a community of South Asian women and allies who are dedicated to creating positive change through entrepreneurship, creativity, and leadership.
In today's member highlight, we're delighted to introduce Jess Singh, a film producer and creative. Jess has been making a significant impact in the world of film, working on numerous narrative short films and cultivating her growing interest in documentary filmmaking.
Up, up and away | Book Club Reviews Michelle Law’s ‘Asian Girls Are Going Places’
It was in the early 2010’s that a series of domestic violence cases amongst South Asian Communities in Victoria gained traction in the media. Against the backdrop of a rising incidence and awareness of family violence, state and national communities grappled with this emerging profile of what was happening behind the closed doors of South Asian homes. This is where Manjula Datta O’Connor begins her novel, Daughters of Durga, but it isn’t where the story ends.
In July we read Nandita Chakraborty's 'Dirty Little Secrets: A Memoir' as part of our South Asian Women’s Book Club.

Through her book, Nandita builds a complex world of characters navigating their lives as authentically flawed, humanly inconsistent people. Her book is a generous insight into her writing process all the while giving the reader something to think about at every chapter. To learn about our discussions on the book and with Nandita, check out the full blog.
Yatha यथा is an award-winning multicultural advocate and speaker who is also pursuing a career in the medical device industry. She is currently a Youth Ambassador for the Multicultural Youth Affairs Network NSW and Vice-Chair of the non for profit, Prosper (Project Australia).

Yatha has spoken at events including the International Youth Media Conference, the National Youth Futures Summit and has commented for media publications including the Sydney Morning Herald. She also worked with the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism in a Global Program to prevent violent extremism among young people. Her passion for helping others and advocating for the vulnerable and marginalised groups is an inspiration. Read the full blog for Yatha's insight into advocacy and leadership.
ASAC is thrilled to celebrate Ana as one of the 2022 Australia’s Stellar South Asian Women awardees. Ana runs the production company indiVisual films that specialises in multicultural stories. Ana created the Diversity in Australian Media community 13 years ago and is an advocate for equity, social justice and safe spaces. Learning of Ana’s advocacy and support for equity, representation and social justice in media has been heartwarming. We know the legacy she’s created will continue to have a lasting impact on future generations of Australian creatives; and goes to the heart of what this award and ASAC are all about. 

Read the full blog to learn about Ana’s tireless efforts behind the scenes to bring about positive change to Australia’s media landscape.
Meet our second Stellar South Asian Woman 2022, Sheetal Deo.
Meet our first Stellar South Asian Woman 2022, Anjali Sharma. Anjali is 18 years old and was the lead litigant of the Sharma vs Environment Minister, a class action legal case which, in 2021, successfully established that the environment minister owes all young people a duty of care to protect them from the impacts of climate change. We sat down with her to learn more about her advocacy, what motivates her and any advice she has to young people out there. Read the full blog to hear about Anjali's experiences.
With the Federal elections this month it only made sense to step into the world of politics and read @MehreenFaruqi’s ‘Too Migrant, Too Muslim, Too Loud’ as part of our South Asian Women’s Book Club.

Mehreen’s story taught us that while no migrant journey is the same, we all share the hope that there’s space to build and to create something better than what once was. It reminds us that the story of migrants in Australia is an ongoing and evolving one; and it’s up to us to shape the current narrative for ourselves and for future generations.

We were incredibly lucky to have Mehreen join us for a QnA. To learn about our discussions on the book and with Mehreen, check out the full blog.
With the 2022 Federal election less than 3 weeks away, it’s more important than ever for all people of voting age to be aware of the candidates we’ll be voting for at the ballot box. 

#ICYMI here’s a quick list of female South-Asian candidates running for the Labor, Liberals and the Greens parties to get you up to speed.
Australia's International students are talented, hard working and resilient and deserve more support from the government and community. Our team member Dishi breaks down her experiences as an International Student in Australia during the pandemic and the challenges international students  face both personally and professionally. Read the full piece to understand just how resilient the international student community is and why they deserve to be treated better than being Australia's 'cash cows'.
Ever felt that by living in Australia you were distant from your South Asian roots? Our new blog writer, Janani is passionate about Indian philosophy and in her latest post she shares how Indian philosophical concepts are actually quite deeply embedded in Western culture from daily conversations to pop culture.
This book made us reflect on all the gatherings we had attended over the last year, wondering if we have been a good host and whether the gatherings were meaningful. The book forced us to self-reflect, to think more deeply about the ways we’ve connected in the past and what we’d like to change moving forward. 

If you’re not sure whether this book is for you, trust us when we say it is! This is the kind of book that you’ll read over a few weeks or months, taking in its golden nuggets of information, reflecting on them, applying them to your day-to-day life and finding yourself more satisfied with the way you connect with others. Check out our full review.
Mental wellbeing is important for everyone, no matter what community they’re part of. It’s healthy and normal to seek mental health help when we need to, just like we would for a physical ailment. 

If you’re curious about: getting mental health care or what it’s like having a South Asian psychologist, or having conversations about mental health with friends, checkout this blog.
Our Content Editor, Erika (@byerikamenezes), loves planning and making lists. She’s shared her top 6 goal-setting habits to help you achieve your 2022 New Year’s resolutions! Head to the blog to find out what you need to do to stay on top of your resolutions.
Last month we read Tahmima Anam’s ‘A Golden Age’ as part of our South Asian Women’s book club. A tale of hope, courage and Bangladesh's Liberation War, this novel was a great way for us to learn about Bangladesh’s history which many of our members were not as familiar with. The novel inspired some interesting conversions on war, history and relationships with our members sharing stories of war they had heard from family.
Maneet shares her journey overcoming her skin-related self-esteem issues. ​Her story is one that many South Asian women will be familiar with: experiencing societal obsession that attempts to control women’s appearances and enforce impossible beauty standards. Maneet shares the lessons she's learned about herself, her skin and her healing journey.
This month our book club read and discussed Afghan-American author, Nadia Hashimi’s, The Pearl That Broke Its Shell. A book about two women's desire for freedom to control her own fate and the feeling of powerlessness she wishes to overcome. The book instigated interesting conversations on 'naseeb' or destiny and whether we believe in the concept.
Recently, one of our Co-founders, Daizy, went on an online book-buying spree because she'd been struggling to find books by and for the South Asian diaspora in her local bookshops. Knowing what it was like to grow up without stories that reflected her experiences and culture, Daizy wanted to find books that her young nieces and nephew would enjoy and reflected their lived experiences. To see what young adult books Daizy bought, check out the blog.
Despite the pandemic making the last two years a difficult time for everyone, the bright parts of these times for me was discovering epic small businesses while scrolling through Instagram reels or Tik Tok. It turns out procrastinating from university assignments is a productive use of your time when you have to organise goodie bags filled with amazing creations from BIPOC women-led business for ASAC's launch event. Here’s a list of 11 values-aligned businesses owned by Women of Colour that we loved having as our sponsors for our event.
Recently, one of our Co-founders, Daizy, went on an online book-buying spree because she'd been struggling to find books by and for the South Asian diaspora in her local bookshops. Knowing what it was like to grow up without stories that reflected her experiences and culture, Daizy wanted to find books that her young nieces and nephew would enjoy and reflected their lived experiences. To see what children’s picture books Daizy bought, check out the blog.
We know getting stuck into #auspol can be overwhelming and intimidating, but thankfully organisations like these 6 are here to uplift and empower young people interested in making a positive difference in the community by getting involved in public-decision making, policy-making, and politics.
This month our noses were buried in Untold: defining moments of the uprooted, an anthology of 31 stories and personal essays by South-Asian female-identifying authors reflecting on their experience growing up in America, Canada and the United Kingdom. This collection exceeded our expectations and we were fortunate enough to host a QnA with three of the authors, Neha Patel, Nisha Singh and Apoorva Verghese.
Melbourne’s most recent lockdown was tough. After another series of her in-person art workshops had to be cancelled, Priyanka Kaur founded Mahala to support herself and fellow creatives, while also giving back to the community. Mahala  specialises in thoughtful gift boxes made by and for South Asian women. Launched 10 weeks ago, Mahala is already supporting 12 women-led businesses and carries 13 different products.
There is a need for greater diversity in our Parliament and note the urgent shortage of youth representation in these spaces, particularly young Women of Colour.

With federal elections gearing up for next year, it’s now more important than ever to look closely at who is representing us, whether their interests and values are actually aligned with what we care about, and who deserves our vote.
Australia’s writing arena, like most of its other public spaces, is predominantly occupied by white men. Through our personal research we found few published Australian South-Asian female authors. We hope this list broadens your literary horizons, especially those of us in the Australian-South Asian community looking for inspiration, because as the saying goes ‘you can’t be, what you can’t see’. We thought ‘homeward-bound’ captured the essence of this list as these books engage with a variety of transitionary life phases in the pursuit of finding acceptance, belonging and being at home in oneself, as well as, migration.
In July our book club members read Mira Sethi’s Are You Enjoying, a collection of seven short stories about life, love, intimacy and intrigue in contemporary, urban Pakistan. While our members observed that the stories didn’t offer as much insight into the lives of ordinary people, the book allowed for interesting conversations about power dynamics in the workplace. Read to find out what we thought of the book and the insightful conversation we had.
South Asian women are far and few in the Australian art scene. Their magnificent work does not get the recognition nor the prestige it deserves. We're proud to share the journey of our former artists in residence Priyanka Kaur and Avneet Singh in producing a series of art depicting South Asian women, one of which 'Dancing Rani' was sold recently.
To commemorate the first anniversary of the Australian South Asian Centre (ASAC), our founders, Daizy Maan Kaur and Sehar Gupta share what they’ve learned on this journey so far and what’s planned for the future of ASAC.
Australian Indian actor & screenwriter Leah Vandenberg has created one of the first Indian episodes and written a custom Punjabi tune for kids to air live on Play School- one of Australia’s most-watched TV shows for children with over 900 000 weekly children tuning in. This will be
A few weeks ago we hosted an Opoortunity for Emerging Writers where 3 South Asian female wrirers would receive feedback on their writing from one of our experienced mentors. Meet our winners and learn about their writing journey
In July our book club members read Mira Sethi’s Are You Enjoying, a collection of seven short stories about life, love, intimacy and intrigue in contemporary, urban Pakistan. While our members observed that the stories didn’t offer as much insight into the lives of ordinary people, the book allowed for interesting conversations about power dynamics in the workplace. Read to find out what we thought of the book and the insightful conversation we had.
Our final Australian Stellar South Asian Woman 2021 is actor, dancer and activist Pallavi Sharda. Without losing her unique voice Pallavi has stood her ground in the film industry and urged other women to do the same. She openly shares about her fire for Bollywood, spiritual journey as a multi-hyphenate and advice for young aspiring South Asian actors.
With the horrific situation in Afghanistan and the inadequate response from our leaders it's time we step up and demand action. We've outlined how you can help in this blog.
azaadi (Freedom)
Our fourth Australian Stellar South Asian Woman, is actor, writer, and voice artist, Leah Vandenberg. She candidly shares with us stories from her unconventional childhood and how it shaped her career in the Australian television and film industry over the last 20+ years.
In the second part of our Recap blog for our event, ‘We will write our own stories’ – South Asian Women Authors, we look at our key takeaways from the conversation with Sushi Das, Alicia Vrajlal, and Balli Kaur Jaswal. They include the importance of advocating for your work, how to deal with dodgy literary agents, and the interesting difference in covers between the books written by South Asian male versus female authors
Truly a trailblazer in her own right, our third Stellar South Asian Woman Sushi Das defied orthodox opinions to become a journalist, inspired by causes related to gender, culture, and justice. Funny, candid, and honest - her message for younger South Asian women is loud and clear: listen to your inner voice and acknowledge your power.
ASAC invited three talented writers - Sushi Das, Alicia Vrajlal, and Balli Kaur Jaswal, to share their experiences writing professionally at the last event of the Australian Indian Digital Creative Festival - 'We will write our own stories' - South Asian Women Authors.

They spoke about their writing journey, shared industry insights on navigating challenges in these spaces, and how we can create our own opportunities.
As a part of Australia’s Stellar South Asian Women 2021 series, our second profile is of Sam Wilson, founder of Sober Mates. Sober Mates is an educational platform for young Aussies to understand their drinking habits and learn to navigate social situations sober. We speak to Sam about her own journey to sobriety and also touch upon her childhood as a half-Fiji-Indian in the countryside town of Heywood.
Our member Parvyn has recently released a new album to international acclaim. In partnership with Monash Performing Arts Centre, we are offering our official members and those of your curious to join ASAC $10 tickets.
Lisa Singh
Want to write or become an author?
Authors & Writers you should know about
Expressing Resilience through Art Competition Winners
Soul House Update
Amplifying South Asian Voices through TV and Film
AIDCF: Expressing Resilience through Art Competition
Amplifying hushed voices through Spoken Word Poetry
Women in Digital Work Program by SPARK Deakin
Elevating the voices of Digital Changemakers
THE AUSTRALIAN-INDIAN DIGITAL CREATIVE FESTIVAL
In solidarity with our International Students
Remembrance Day