Beijing and beyond: the next chapter of my story

“We, who with songs beguile your pilgrimage – And swear that beauty lives, though lilies die. We poets, of proud old lineage Who sing to find your hearts, we know not why.” Storytelling is a phenomenal thing. Stories do two paradoxical things at once: make the world bigger and make us feel less lonely in [...]

Doku Rai: Challenging our image of East Timor

“We are brothers, we support each other. But the question is, does Australia think of us like brothers?” Colonised for centuries by the Portuguese and occupied later by Indonesia – East Timor’s struggle for Independence is well remembered by Australians. But outside of politics how much do we really know about the island nation? A [...]

Election 2013: Entrepreneurs push for innovation boost

“There are a lot of fees, charges and government taxes that inhibit that early stage hyper growth that you get in the US, and that’s why I feel as though the next Amazon, Facebook, Google or Apple that’s trying to come out of Australia has almost got this ceiling over it.” With China’s slowing economy [...]

Mercy plea: Bid to save Australians on death row

“By supporting the campaign, you’re not giving drug dealers a free kick. You’re just saying you don’t think people should be killed because of one terrible mistake.” Supporters of Bali 9 members Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have released a last-minute bid for mercy from the Indonesian president. It comes as SBS launches Better Man, [...]

Elderly care: Are Australians doing enough?

“You can’t say I’ll do it when I have more time, when something else is sorted out the kids are more grown up. This is your life, this is it now. “ Worldwide countries are struggling to deal with the problems associated with rapidly ageing populations. China has taken the drastic step of passing new [...]

A hidden crime: sexual assault against the elderly

“We were shocked. Just gutted. Disbelieving – not of her story – but of how anyone could do that to an older woman who was really vulnerable.” Ground-breaking research is exposing a largely hidden crime. Hundreds of cases of sexual assault against elderly people occur every year and it’s feared many more go unreported. Norma [...]

Malaysian Elections 2013: Fly-home voters return for historic ballot

“Change is definitely possible, but I would be happy with progress… It doesn’t have to be a huge change, it just has to be progress in the right direction.” Malaysians in Australia are flying back to vote in what’s been called the most critical general election since the country’s independence from Britain in 1957. For [...]

President Thein Sein Australia visit: Burmese community reacts

“I want to use my freedom, I want to use my knowledge to give them whatever I can… This is my duty, to fight.” The leader of Burma is about to make a historic visit to Australia. President Thein Sein is the first to visit the country since 1974. After decades of harsh military rule, [...]

Twilight Parade 2013: Sydney ushers in the Year of the Snake

More than 100,000 thousand people flooded Sydney’s CBD to watch the annual Lunar New Year Twilight Parade. The 2-hour long spectacle was headed by an 80 metre long float modelled on the Chinese legend of ‘Lady White Snake’ – mythological half woman, half spirit who falls in love with a man. More than 3,500 performers [...]

Hazara refugees: ‘Go Back’ family arrives in Australia

They risked their lives fleeing persecution in Afghanistan. SBS first met the Khan family on the second series of ‘Go Back to Where you came from.’ A team of prominent Australians stayed with them, experiencing firsthand the anxiety and desperation of waiting to be processed as refugees. Now that wait is over. Ali and Sahra [...]

Remembering the Vietnam War: 40 year anniversary of the Australian withdrawal

“You have to develop an illusion that anybody can die except you. You survive thanks to that. If you’re scared and think of death all the time you won’t be able to function.” January 11 2013 marks forty years since the withdrawal of Australian troops from the war in Vietnam. Controversial and brutal, it devastated [...]

Special SBS Report: Mandarin’s growing influence in Hong Kong

“There’s more of a future as a global citizen in Mandarin… It makes strategic sense, it makes good business sense.” For the first time this year Mandarin has overtaken English as the second most spoken language in Hong Kong. As Christy and Kenny Au get ready for school early on Monday morning, their mother Queenie [...]

Special SBS Report: Singapore poised to change death penalty laws

“We should be considering whether or not encouraging a culture of state-sponsored hanging is really the solution to violence in society, or, as some would argue, the cause of violence in society.” Known for its tough stance on drug-trafficking, Singapore is one of the few developed countries with a mandatory death penalty for importing certain [...]

Newcastle students survey: International students attacked

A report released by the student association says that international students at Newcastle University are being told to go back to where they came from. NUSA (Newcastle University Student Association) said survey results detailing reports of verbal and physical abuse, especially targetting students from an Asian and Middle-Eastern background. But Newcastle University Vice-Chancellor Caroline McMillen [...]

Honouring influential African-Australians: Inaugural 2012 awards

Members of Australia’s fastest growing migrant community have been acknowledged for their community contributions at the inaugural African-Australian awards in Sydney. More than 100 African-Australians were honoured, among them athletes, artists and business people. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia 25 August 2012. Like to know more? You can also keep up to date with [...]

Fleeing the economic crisis: Italians head to Australia

Many young Italians fleeing the European economic crisis are convinced by Italian media reports to try their luck down under. “They believe this is the new El Dorado, they still think they can come here and never leave and have a nice house and live in Bondi,” says youth worker Marco Zangari. Working at community [...]

Fighting prejudice, one roll of the dice at a time

A boardgame has been launched by Sydney’s Burwood Council as a tool in the battle against racial bullying. Prejudice can start early… even in the school playground. Research shows children targetted because of their ethnic background become vulnerable to anti-social behaviour later in life. Now a local council in Sydney is doing something about it, [...]

Asylum-seeker boat tragedy: calls for new policy

“Everybody has the right to life, all of us are migrants, except Aborigines. Don’t give yourself the right to be a migrant and others not.” Refugee advocates and supporters have called for the end of mandatory detention at a rally to mark the end of Refugee Week. They say recent tragedies and the high number [...]

Being bilingual: Why migrants should keep their mother tongue

“Globally bilinguals and multilinguals out-number monolinguals, who are a small – but the in the case of Australia – a very strong minority.” Despite Australia’s multicultural mix, Diversity Studies and Languages educator Dr Criss Jones Diaz says we’re falling well behind the world when it comes to learning a second language. She says Australia is [...]

Celebration and protest: Tale of two migrant walls

“It makes me realise that really, we’re all boat people.” Sydney’s Maritime Museum added 600 names to its Welcome Wall, honouring the contributions of those who have adopted Australia as home. An hour’s drive away, demonstrators at Villawood’s detention centre protested against what they say are new regulations designed to silence detained refugees. Broadcast for [...]

Sydney Writers Festival: Re-telling the Australian story

“I didn’t want it to be classified as ‘refugee literature’… I wanted it to be a very Australian story.” Alice Pung’s Her Father’s Daughter tells the story of a young Melbourne woman who uncovers her father’s extraordinary journey from Cambodia to Australia. Throughout she comes to a deeper understanding of who she is, what it [...]

Special SBS report: Breaking the silence on FGM in Australia

“You bleed, you just cry, you can’t defend yourself… Imagine having an operation, live, without anything. Somebody is cutting your body and you are just lying there hopeless.” It’s a controversial issue rarely spoken of outside Australia’s migrant communities, but Faduma Salah Musse is breaking the silence on Female Genital Mutilation in order to stamp [...]

SBS feature report: Elders using social media to save stories

Once, we either heard stories of our family’s past either directly from parents or grandparents. Or from old photos and records hidden away for years in closets and attics. Now there’s a new way. Online. And the ones keenest to use it, anyone aged upwards, from 74. It’s easy to assume that social networking is [...]

Africultures Festival: Celebrating Australia’s African communities

Australia’s African communities are among the fastest growing in the country. Sydney’s diverse and vibrant community came together for the annual Africultures festival in Auburn to celebrate the culture, food and fellowship of families who have overcome immense challenges to settle and thrive in the city today. TV story broadcast for SBS World News Australia [...]

Taking on Bondi Beach: Migration to Surf

It’s one of Australia’s most famous beaches, but its scenic shore can hide a ferocious rip which catches out many of those unfamiliar with surf. Because of this Bondi Surf Life Saving Club, the oldest surf lifesaving club in the world, has launched ‘Migration to Surf’ to help new arrivals get safely in and out [...]

The Philippines Project: The end of a journey

In January I opened my laptop at a gate lounge in Sydney airport and described what I thought I had in store for the following few weeks. What happened between now and then was an overwhelming project of first-hand research, extensive documentation and quite an emotional roller-coaster: a very personal investigation into a dark trade. [...]

Special SBS report: Child sex tourism in the Philippines

The opening of the Clark airbase and Subic Bay naval base just three hours north of the capital Manila created the designated ‘sex hubs’ of Angeles and Olongapo City that exist today. At its height in the 1970s and 1980s, tens of thousands of US officers roamed the area, using it as their playground. Fr [...]

Football United: Showcasing talents on and off the field

It’s known as the world game, but for these students it’s more than a sport, it’s the key to building a new life in Australia. Football United, an organisation which engages refugee and migrant youth through football, has launched its first multi-media exhibition. Backed by film director Philip Noyce, the Digital Connections program allows its [...]

Maturing and more diverse: An evolving Australian screen industry

The biggest stars of the Australian screen have come together in Sydney for the inaugural AACTA Awards, with those attending saying it was a celebration of a maturing and more diverse Australian industry. ‘The Palace,’ winner of best short film and best short film screenplay told the story of a family trying to survive the [...]

Fighting cultural isolation, preventing youth extremism

The ‘Different People Different Voices Project’ aims to stamp out racism and cultural bullying in high schools that can lead to destructive anti-social behaviour down the track. A group of about 20 youth leaders from Sydney’s inner west are being trained to facilitate the program in local high schools in the 2012 school year. It’s [...]

Niu Warrior Festival: The Indigenous family of the Pacific

The Indigenous peoples of the Asia-Pacific came together for a family celebration of epic proportions at the Niu Warrior Festival at Sydney’s Casula Powerhouse. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians joined local Pacific Islander communities in a celebration of culture, history and tradition. The exhibition highlighted what the different Indigenous peoples have in common and [...]

Ambition for peace: Lessons from a Cabramatta playground

Is valuing peace something that can be taught in the classroom? The teachers at Cabramatta High School think so. They held their annual Peace Day last week, showcasing the rich diversity of their students, and welcoming acclaimed US linguist and philosopher, Noam Chomsky, as their guest of honour. It was an impressive morning program. Months [...]

The truth about refugees: ‘The Other Journey’

Refugees are often figures of scorn or pity, rarely are they recognised as people of courage and dignity. On the first day of Diwali this year a 27 year-old Sri Lankan refugee took his own life in Sydney’s Villawood Detention Centre. The tragedy demonstrated the difficulty of leaving your homeland to seek asylum elsewhere, the [...]

The Festival of Lights: Celebrating Diwali (and treasuring culture)

 You’d be forgiven for thinking that there’s little more to this festival than spirited dancing, beautiful clothes and delicious food. But for the South-Asian community it’s much more. The seven-day festival symbolises victory of good over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance. Literally meaning “rows of lights” the warmth is felt not [...]

‘Finding Country’: Developing truly Australian design

For this architect a piece of paper is never blank. The land we build on is filled with stories: of communities, their histories and their relationship with the land. While much of Australian design is adapted from European and American ideas, Kevin O’Brien has developed ‘Finding Country,’ an approach influenced by his Indigenous heritage and [...]

Taking aim at modern-day slavery

How do you recognise modern day slavery? A government-funded campaign has been launched on television and cinemas nationally, aiming to raise awareness of slavery happening in our own communities. It tells stories of migrant workers being exploited in domestic and labour-intensive industries. Many arrive voluntarily, but are then trapped in vulnerable situations, while others are [...]

Income control plans criticised

Should the government place compulsory restrictions on spending for families in disadvantaged communities? Income management was introduced into Northern Territory communities under the Intervention, but it’s now being trialled outside the N.T. The system quarantines between 50 – 70% of the welfare payments of families identified as “vulnerable to financial crisis” to be spent only [...]

Sounds Like Welcome

Music has been described as a universal language. Jazz singer Katie Noonan and support network ‘Welcome to Australia’ have joined forces to say just that – “welcome!” They’re distributing donated musical instruments to asylum-seekers and refugees through a campaign called ‘Sounds Like Welcome’. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia Saturday 17 September 2011. Like to [...]

Faith in art: 2011 Blake Prize winner announced

Australia’s leading religious art award – the Blake Prize – has celebrated its 60th year. This year’s winner reflects what the organisers say is the “diversity of faiths”- in a changing Australia. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia September 15 2011.

Reflecting on 9/11: What have we learnt?

It may have happened on the other side of the world, but the effects of September 11 are still being felt across Australia. A whole generation of Muslim-Australians say their lives were changed, but of course it’s not just Muslims who are living with its legacy. On 10th anniversary of September 11 the young people [...]

Fasting and feasting: Reporting on Ramadan

It’s not often that I’m out reporting wearing a pair of pink fluffy slippers. But that’s exactly what I found myself doing last week while filming a story about the ‘Open-House Ramadan’ program. During the holy month, Islam teaches that Muslims should not let anything pass through their lips from dawn until sunset. But with [...]

Amnesty Indigenous warning

An Amnesty International report warns of Indigenous communities being starved-off their land by the government’s failure to provide essential services. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia August 9 2011.

The Social Studio

How one envelope-pushing fashion house is nurturing a new generation of Australian designers. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia July 27 2011.

National Hoodie Day

A campaign aiming to redefine how Australians discuss national success. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia July 21 2011.

Film festival with a difference

A national short film festival showcasing the best of multicultural Australia. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia July 17 2011.

Help for migrant drivers

How one Victorian community is helping new migrants and refugees get safely behind the wheel. Broadcast for SBS World News Australia July 13 2011.

‘Blak Side Story’

New technology challenges old stereotypes about Indigenous identity. What does it mean to be an Aboriginal Australian? Broadcast for SBS World News Australia July 11 2011.

Blacktown is little Manila

What can a cardboard construction reveal about national identity? Broadcast for SBS World News Australia June 29 2011.