“The beauty of the world lies in the diversity of its people.”

Primary School students, parents and staff from Melbourne-based Al Siraat College celebrated our community’s multicultural diversity with a special outdoors assembly and a cultural parade on Wednesday, 27 March 2019. 

It was wonderful to see our diversity displayed so vibrantly and harmoniously, with the majority of students and staff having followed the school’s call to come decked out in their traditional outfits.

A Cultural Parade took place in celebration of our cultural diversity.

 

During the assembly, students heard from their fellow mates and teachers about their family backgrounds, traditional clothing and cultural belonging. Many had made beautiful display posters or were waving flags of their ethnic heritage while being both proud Australians and Muslims.

No cultural diversity celebration should take place without having members of our First National people in attendance, representing the traditional owners and custodians of our land.

A special Thank You to Mitch Tambo from True Culture, a proud Gamilaraay/ Birri Gubba man, for sharing his people’s culture and tradition with our school community in such an engaging and insightful way.

Mitch Tambo from “True Culture” addressing the assembled students for a special performance. 

A special video clip for the occasion was put together by staff member Mehreen Akther, featuring the many different languages spoken at Al Siraat College. Students and staff were asked to say “We all are different, but we all belong” in different languages, showcasing the beautiful diversity found both at the school and within the wider Australian community. You may CLICK HERE to watch the video.

Al Siraat College primary students displaying their cultural gowns.

The motto of the video is further enhanced by the following verses from the noble Qur’an:

.يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنَّا خَلَقْنَاكُم مِّن ذَكَرٍ وَأُنثَىٰ وَجَعَلْنَاكُمْ شُعُوبًا وَقَبَائِلَ لِتَعَارَفُوا إِنَّ أَكْرَمَكُمْ عِندَ اللَّهِ أَتْقَاكُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ خَبِيرٌ

“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honoured of you with Allah is the one who most righteous. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” (Al Hujraat: 13)

In a similar way, our Australian identity as a nation is forged by the principle “E puribus unum. – From many: One.“. To be truly Australian is to embody a fusion of cultures, languages and religions but regardless of those differences, we are all the same and we are all one.

May the celebration of our diversity serve extra meaning after the tragedy in Christchurch and be more than just a fun day at school for our children: Rather, may it help us all to connect by having conversations outside our own ethnic or faith community to meet and get to know one another.

We all share the responsibility to ensure our children will grow into a future where they will respect and love one another, irrespective of our cultural or religious differences.

Now more than ever is the time to reach out to our neighbours and the wider community. No one can tear us apart when we know one another. No child can learn to hate someone they know as a real-life friend.