Highlights from the Wyndham Community Dialogue 14th October 2018 — Kulture Hive

A discussion on parental and societal factors that lead to juvenile delinquency.

Bode Muse
Bode Muse
Oct 15, 2018 · 5 min read

The essence of open community conversations is to have people from opposing views, regardless of what they believe or are known for, to have conversations.

Putting together a dialogue of this nature is tedious. In case you plan to host one, there are a few things you should expect.

  1. Stay neutral.
  2. Adapt your communication style to whom you are trying to engage.
  3. Have a diverse team — diversity should encompass belief, race, culture, lifestyle, and opinions.
  4. If you can’t stomach dissent in your team, don’t host a community dialogue.
  5. Dissent in these meetings can be managed by stating the rules of engagement and having a moderator who is adept at managing the conversation flow.

Benito Nieves and Caroline Troupe

Entering the venue, guest are greeted by our beautiful hosts Benito and Caroline.

Guest walk into a very spacious venue. We deliberately double the seats for the amount of guest we expect. Especially for people who attend by themselves. Our reason is to allow enough space between people. It would be awkward to discover your neighbour’s views are starkly different from yours during the conversation.

Allow personal spaces

We kicked off the dialogue with positive story telling. This instance was with Kate Matheson, 20 year old founder of Cake Creations by Kate, a million dollar company that sells cup cakes. She started from her mum’s kitchen in Point Cook, making cup cakes for fun and posting on social media. Demand outweighed supply, and a business was created. Her parents had a significant influence in helping her stick to her passion and have been supportive all through.

Kate Matheson, Founder & CEO at Cake Creations by Kate.

Our moderator, Vicki Portelli, introduced the panel;

Dr Williams Abur , Ph.D.— Former South Sudanese refugee whose research focus was on settlement and migration of South Sudanese refugees in Australia. His research covered factors that improves or obturate integration.

Rachel Carling- Jenkins MP — Member of the Victorian Legislative Council. Has a Ph.D in Social Science. Rachel worked as an academic and social worker. She is the author of Disability and Social Movements. Famous for Jalal’s Law — A law to prevent accidents by unlicensed drivers.

Karthik Arasu — Co-founder, Forum for Indian Australians FIA, an organisation that aims to bridge the gap in the Indian- Australian community. Karthik played an active role in the successful campaign against Meat and Livestock Australia for derogatory Ganesh advertisement in September 2017.

Dr. Santino Atem Deng — is a researcher, counsellor, educator, and specialist trainer in mental health, family/parenting and resettlement. Dr. Deng currently works as a counsellor with the Victoria Foundation House. He is also a founder of African-Australian Family and Parenting Support Services (AFPSS), which provides consultancy and training works, including positive parenting support services.

Shillar Sibanda — Registered Psychiatric Nurse who has worked across the public and private health care sectors. Her passion is to promote emotional well- being and positive mental health of clients and families. Shillar is also the president of Africa Day Australia and recipient of the 2018 Premier Volunteer Award at Government House.

Panelist left to right — Dr. Williams Abur, Karthik Arasu, Rachel Carling-Jenkins MP, Shillar Sibanda, and Dr. Santino Atem Deng.

Moments We Loved

Kate Matheson, got a fan!

Our little champion here, was very curious, actively engaged in the conversation and was enthralled by Kate Matheson’s journey. Samantha Gourley, her mom couldn't be more proud as she watched her daughter floating around in one to one conversations with the guests and helping with getting feedback on the program — a self initiated move!

Gift presentation to our panelist.
We made the mug look good :)
The content of gift to panelist and special guests. Courtesy of Rishi Prabakhar, CEO of Smart Loan Providers
The mindfulness session lead by Rohit
Samantha Gourley. A community member who had very unique views on community cohesion
All hands up! Wait what’s going on here?
That moment when someone ranted at the media and got cornered by Joseph Dunstan ABC News, who clarified how media organizations have different approaches to reporting. Not all media are the same. Joseph Dunstan is one of the finest reporters around providing factual reporting with commendable journalistic sense.

Session ended with a mindfulness session lead by Rohit.

The essence of the mindfulness session is to diffuse tensions built up after the conversation and help everyone back to a relaxed state of mind.

We couldn’t get many photos of the mindfulness session as the lights were later dimmed and everyone participated.

Thanks again to all who joined in, and contributed their views honestly. A detailed report on the findings of the dialogue will be out shortly and we will post updates on the outcomes.

Follow my medium page for more community stories.

Follow Kulture Hive on Facebook and see more photos: https://www.facebook.com/kulturehive

Feel free to drop a comment or feedback below.

Much thanks to our panelists, Kate Matheson, Lily Troupe, Senthill Sundaram, Rishi Prabakhar, Clyde Sharady, Point Cook TV and many more people who have supported putting the event together.

Event Security was provided by Junior Jobe Moses: https://www.facebook.com/conceptsservices

Bode Muse

Written by

Bode Muse

My musings on community, politics, business and life

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