CareFlight, an aeromedical charity hosted Australians from diverse cultural to celebrate Harmony Day on Sunday 25 March 2018 at its Westmead base, thanks to the initiative of 16-year-old Rabia Rasool.

The event was attended by more than 50 people of diverse cultural background including guests, Mr Abdul Majid Yousfani, Consul General of Pakistan, Sydney, Mr Phillip Ruddock, Mayor of Hornsby Shire Council and Dr Michelle Byrne, Mayor of The Hills Shire Council.

“Today is all about building bridges, talking to strangers and letting people know that everyone belongs. I believe in this vision and believe in achieving love and equality for all. I believe in a society where we accept everyone for who they are indifferent to their race, culture, belief or interpretation because I am, you are, we are Australians,” Rabia declared.

Harmony Day is a day to celebrate Australian multiculturalism, based on the successful integration of migrants into our community. It is an opportunity for all Australians to embrace cultural diversity and to share what we have in common.

“As an Australian-born Pakistani, I recognise the diversity within our multicultural society and believe that it is something to be embraced,” Rabia said.

Rabia Rasool with Mr Phillip Ruddock

Since first held in 1999, Harmony Day has grown to become a significant annual day for Australians to come together and celebrate our nation’s cultural diversity.

CareFlight has the mission to save lives, speed recovery and serve the community. Established in 1986, CareFlight provides the highest standard of care to our patients nationally. Their critical care doctors, paramedics and nurses are specially trained to care for seriously injured people who need emergency treatment at the scene of an accident. CareFlight medical teams use helicopters, turboprop and jet aircraft and road vehicles.

Rabia, currently a year 11 student at Mount St Benedict College, first decided to raise awareness and funds in her local community for CareFlight after a visit to the rapid response helicopter base in Westmead a few years ago.

“I’ve lived in Australia my whole life and I decided I want to give something back my community. I’m part of the Muslim community but unfortunately in my community, there’s not much awareness of the amazing service CareFlight provides so I decided to change that,” Rabia said.

“Often people forget about what our community provides us with. Careflight is a key example of the wonderful services available to the community,” she further added.

It is the second time Rabia has rallied the community around Harmony Day. In 2016, aged just 13, she ran a campaign to educate her community about CareFlight and raised valuable funds for the charity with her family, friends and school.