Greetings to all members.
Marjorie Murray Room
On Saturday 21 January a group of five people interrupted holidays and other occupations to move and consolidate the
contents of two rooms into one. It was an exceptional day and we were pleased with the result. I wish to thank
Treasurer, Tricia Blombery and her partner Stuart, our CIR Bev Pavey, and my husband Peter, for the teamwork that
accomplished a smooth move. Thanks also go to Office Secretary, Sue Ewin, for her work prior to the move.
We have been able to keep all the valuable furniture recommended by Dorothy Betty, sell items not needed and lend some
to our neighbour, National Council of Women. Some items still for sale are one coffee table $50, a desk (L 1520mm W
920mm H 740mm) $200, and 12 stackable chairs $5 each. A 20-litre urn is available for whoever could make use of it. For
information contact Treasurer, Tricia Blombery.
We have renegotiated the lease for three years for 31 sq mtrs plus the use of meeting rooms on Level 1 of the Sydney
Mechanics School of Arts (SMSA) at no extra cost.
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts
Branches may wish to avail themselves of the opportunity to:
- Use the meeting rooms on level 1 – if so let me know and I’ll arrange it.
- The SMSA is open to co-sponsor an event if it coincides with their aims which are similar to the aims of AFUW-NSW.
Co-sponsoring means they will advertise the event through their newsletter and no charge is made for use of the meeting
room / auditorium.
Billeting is available with some Sydney members for any members outside the metropolitan area who wish to attend an AFUW
function in Sydney. We wish to encourage as much interaction as possible between all branches so please avail yourselves
of this facility. We would make you welcome.
Getting to know you
We are gradually taking steps to do this. Already I have enjoyed visits and conversations with members of some branches
and look forward to visiting all the branches before the year is out.
New website and logo
We display here our new logo for the first time. It embraces the IFUW tradition of the “lamp of learning and
enlightenment” in our local setting. There are some very interesting treatments of the lamp in the emblems of various
NFAs. I do encourage you to check out the new website and logo at www.afuwnsw.org.au. I also look forward to receiving
information from branches who are showing a blank page on the site.
Publicise our successes
This is an important initiative. I plan to publish on the web a list of all the awards offered within NSW. Could
secretaries of branches send me specific details for each award you offer? Due date: 31 March 2006.
What do we care about?
Overwhelmingly the answer is EDUCATION. This is our focus and area of concern. However what aspect of Education can we
choose as a project? Around the nation some are concerned with indigenous education, others refugees and others women in
prison. Does anyone have a suggestion for NSW?
New NCW Award
Currently under discussion in Central Committee is a plan to offer a $1,000 AFUW-NSW Award at the National Council of
Women Australia Day Lunch in 2007 to a female student. It would be excellent publicity for us to be represented at this
well-organised event which is attended by over 300 women many of whom are members of much larger organisations.
After the superb lunch in January, support for this initiative is strong with donations already in hand and pledged. I
do hope as a member you agree to the proposal. Please let me know your views whether for or against and whether you
think it would be a good idea to have the funds from a specific event, say The Sophia Holland Lecture and Lunch,
allocated to this award. Also if people are unable to attend whether you think members would send a donation in lieu.
Do plan to come to the Conference from 20 to 24 April. It promises to be a worthwhile experience with an opportunity for
members throughout Australia to meet in Canberra. It is inspiring to hear what the other states are involved in and no
doubt it will be even more inspiring to hear directly from the International President Griselda Kenyon about what IFUW
is doing. More specific details elsewhere in this newsletter.
A big thank-you to the organisers of our Christmas Party last year. Members of North Shore branch took responsibility
for the event which was well attended. Attendees enjoyed the hospitality extended by The Women’s College Principal, Mrs
Yvonne Rate, and were entertained by Guest Speaker, Diané Brown’s exciting and eventful life-story.
Sophia Holland Lecture & Lunch
Make a note in your diary for this event: 27 May 2006. Details elsewhere. We are pleased to have secured our 2005 Tempe
Mann Awardee, Susan Coulson, to deliver the lecture. Susan completed her PhD last year and is gaining an international
reputation with her specialty in helping people with facial nerve paralysis. Do come out in force to support Susan.
I hope 2006 will bring you joy and good fortune and may we continue to grow AFUW-NSW into the organisation of which we
are all proud.
Needed an enthusiastic member or team of members with email contact to answer email membership enquiries and
promote AFUW-NSW membership and functions through web and email media. Seek out opportunities for radio
interviews, press coverage and other ways of promotion.
This position can be filled from anywhere in the state and face-to-face contacts for interviews can be
arranged by coordinator through members in relevant locations.
If you are interested in taking on this role you will be working in partnership with the president, Ivy
Edwards. Contact Ivy email@example.com
Make New Friends
Attention Metropolitan Members
We are trying to make it easier for our regional membership to attend AFUW-NSW functions in Sydney. Would
you be happy and able to offer hospitality in your home? If so, contact Christine Hosking email:
with your address and how many you can accommodate. Christine will coordinate all billeting arrangements so
that you will not be approached directly.
Enjoy a good party?
Functions Coordinator desperately needed to take on the role of organising and coordinating the Christmas
luncheon. If you enjoy it we’d love you to stay in this role and think of new ways we can have fun. Contact
President Ivy email: firstname.lastname@example.org
President, Ivy Edwards, writes: I do hope to meet up with many of you at the Conference.
You are invited to resurrect the conference registration form from the last issue of Graduate Women, to fill it in and
then send it off to Canberra. The conference promises to be an event well worth participating in.
Not only does the programme seem interesting but also the opportunity to meet with members from all around Australia is
one to take advantage of. By talking to members from other states we can learn what they are doing and how they go about
meeting the aims of AFUW and come up with new ideas for NSW.
The organising committee are still working on the programme but here is the outline to date:
Reception at Government House
Thursday 20 April begins with an orientation session for members attending a Triennial Conference for the first time,
followed by the AGM and then a reception at Government House for all registrants, hosted by the Governor-General,
Major-General Michael Jeffries and Mrs Marlena Jeffries.
The Conference is then divided into Business Sessions and Public Sessions.
Friday 21 April and Monday 24 April are devoted to business during which you will learn about the running of AFUW on a
national level. This will include reports, Constitutional Amendments, Policy Resolutions, update of Policy and Attitudes
President IFUW, Griselda Kenyon
Griselda will address the meeting on the Friday afternoon following which we will meet the Candidates for 34rd
7.45 – 9.00 pm Discussion Session The Future of AFUW
This period has been organised so that all AFUW members, not just Council members and delegates, may have an opportunity
to put forward their ideas concerning AFUW. In NSW a number of issues have been raised during the past triennium and
this is our chance to air them in the wider forum..
Saturday 22 April and Sunday 23 April are the designated days open to the public. So feel free to invite partners and
friends to attend.
Guest speakers will address varied aspects, both military and domestic, in keeping with the Conference Theme,
The Role of Australian Women in Peacekeeping. Professor David Horner, Australian Defence History at ANU, is the lead speaker.
After lunch, Commissioner Audrey Fagan, Chief Commissioner ACT Policing, AFP, takes her place at the lectern with Cadets
from the Australian Defence Force Academy following her after afternoon tea.
Speakers have still to be confirmed for Sunday when the programme will commence after lunch.
The Conference Dinner
The dinner includes a special tour of the Australian War Memorial, pre-dinner drinks, dinner at the War Memorial with Dr
Rosalind Hearder from the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, ANU as Guest Speaker.
Sunday evening we are to be treated to dinner and entertainment at the home of Dr Jocelyn Eskdale at no cost to
attendees. Partners are welcome.
The Conference venue is the charming University House, ANU, from which transport will be arranged to outside conference
|** You will remember in the last Newsletter the story of the “green bags” for Samoa. At the recent meeting of the
National Council President, Rosemary Everett, showed a sample of a most attractive blue bag displaying both the
Australian and the Samoan logos which have been sent over to them. The bags will be sold by the Samoan association as a
promotion of both the environment and the Samoan organisation. Ivy reports that Rosemary is now organising these blue
bags with AFUW logo for sale to members at the Conference at $5 each. “I think,” Ivy writes, “our shopping will look
quite special in them.”
STIMULATING GUEST SPEAKERS AT THE CONFERENCE
DR ROSALIND HEARDER BA (UNSW), PhD (Melbourne), from the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, ANU, will present the
address at the Conference Dinner.
In 2003, Dr Hearder completed her History PhD at the University of Melbourne, on the roles and experiences of Australian
medical personnel in Japanese captivity during World War II. She has taught at the University of Melbourne in various
history subjects including the Cold War, South Africa and Australian military history, and has written two websites for
the Australian War Memorial on Australians in France in 1918 and the Korean War. Dr Hearder has published articles in
the field of Australian military history, and has a particular interest in the area of Australian military medicine. She
is currently working as a member of an Australian National University-Australian War Memorial team on the Official
History of Australian Peacekeeping and Post-Cold War Operations.
Dr Hearder was the recipient of the inaugural C.E.W. Bean Award for Military History awarded to the best honours or
postgraduate thesis submitted in any Australian university focusing on Australian's experience of war. The Prize was
established in 2004 to mark the 10th anniversary of the Army History Unit and its aim is to foster and encourage the
study of military history and heritage at a tertiary level. It is an annual award, in honour of the first prominent
Australian military historian, C.E.W. Bean, the official war correspondent to the AIF, who joined the troops on
Gallipoli and at the Western Front and was appointed to write the official history after the war. Her thesis has since
been published in book form.
The judges’ citation for the award reads as follows:
The plight of Australian prisoners of war is one of the great tragedies of World War Two. A third of the men captured by
the Japanese died in POW camps; most of those who returned to Australia owed their survival to the dedication, skill and
self-sacrifice of their Medical Officers.
Dr Rosalind Hearder has told the story of Australian doctors at war. We hear their voices through the many and diverse
primary sources she has uncovered, including a vast store of diaries, letters and reminisces seldom consulted by
historians. Her narrative also makes deft use of oral history and successfully surveys a vast secondary literature in a
number of different disciplines.
Dr Hearder alerts us to the many hardships and difficulties medical officers faced in the camps. Her thesis offers a
complex and searching analysis of the relationship between captor and captive, officers and men, and the Australian and
British medical staff. It concludes with a compelling account of repatriation to Australia, and the physical and
psychological legacy of those long dark years of captivity.
“Careers in Captivity: Australian Prisoner –of –War Medical Officers” is a tribute to men of great courage and even
greater compassion. It is a worthy recipient of the inaugural CEW Bean prize.
DR DAVID HORNER, DipMilStud (RMC), MA (Hons) (UNSW), PhD (ANU) will be the lead speaker for the Public Meeting on the
He is currently an Official Historian and Professor of Australian Defence History in the Research School of Pacific and
Asian Studies at the Australian National University, and is Visiting Scholar for 2006 to the John Curtin Prime
Ministerial Library at Curtin University. Visiting Scholars spend some time at the JCPML, making use of the research
collection. Scholars may present the results of their research via public lectures, print publications such as books and
journal articles, web publications or other means.
Professor Horner's research interests include Australian defence history, particularly strategy, command, intelligence
and operations and current defence issues. His current major research project is also the Official History of Australian
Peacekeeping and Post-Cold War Operations.
He served for 25 years in the Australian Regular Army, including active service in South Vietnam; joined Strategic
Defence Studies Centre in 1990; Editor of the Army History Series (1994 to present); Head of the Australian Army's Land
Warfare Studies Centre (1998 to 2002); adviser to TV programs.
Professor Horner has authored many books, including High Command, Australia and Allied Strategy, 1939-1945, George Allen
& Unwin, Sydney, in association with the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1982 , Inside the War Cabinet: Directing
Australia's War Effort, 1939-1945, Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 1996 and Strategic Command: General Sir John Wilton and
Australia's Asian Wars, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2005.. He also co-authored with Desmond Ball Breaking the
Codes: Australia’s KGB Network about espionage activities of the KGB in Australia.
ACT CHIEF POLICE OFFICER - AUDREY FAGAN APM was appointed to the role of ACT’s Chief Police Officer on July 4, 2005
following a successful policing career spanning more than 20 years at local, national and international levels, as well
as experience working at senior levels of government.
She holds a Bachelor of Science from the Australian National University, a Graduate Certificate Applied Management from
the Australian Institute of Police Management, a Graduate Diploma in Executive Leadership from the Australian Institute
of Police Management and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Ms Fagan is also a Fellow of
the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, Chair of the
Commonwealth Women in Law Enforcement Strategy, a Member of the Australian Human Resource Institute and a Member of the
National Community Crime Prevention Advisory Group. She has received numerous awards, including the Australian Police
Medal in 2004 and the Australian Institute of Police Management Scholarship Award in 2001.
Ms Fagan began her policing career with the AFP in Canberra in 1981, working initially in protective services and then
in ACT community policing. She went on to take up senior appointments in the AFP's national and international
operations, including a posting to Christmas Island, international liaison, internal investigations and police recruit
training. In the mid 1990s she accepted an advisory position as a law enforcement liaison officer to government working
with three Federal Ministers, advising on issues of policing and law enforcement including the development of the
National Illicit Drug Strategy.
In December 1998, Ms Fagan returned to the AFP to take up a position as Executive Staff Officer in the Office of the
Commissioner, becoming AFP Director Commercial Support, and then General Manager Protective Security, where she had
responsibility for overseeing close personal protection to high office holders, the national witness security program,
protective security intelligence services and special events planning. Key achievements in this role included CHOGM
security planning and AFP protective security responses post September 11. She was then appointed to the position of
Executive Director Protection, where she oversaw the integration of the Australian Protective Service into the AFP.
|INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY is celebrated in many countries around the world. “It is a day when women are recognized for
their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.
It is an occasion for looking back on past struggles and accomplishments, and more importantly, for looking ahead to the
untapped potential and opportunities that await future generations of women. In 1975, during International Women's Year,
the United Nations began celebrating International Women’s Day on 8 March. In 1977 the General Assembly adopted a
resolution proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women's Rights and International Peace to be observed on any day of the
year by Member States, in accordance with their historical and national traditions. In doing so the General Assembly
recognized the role of women in peace efforts and development and urged an end to discrimination and an increase of
support for women’s full and equal participation.”
This March Newsletter issue is always badly timed to canvas local events but we can share some background ideas. The
theme this year is Women in Decision-Making: Meeting Challenges, Creating Change
"Women's equal participation in decision-making is not only a demand for simple justice or democracy, but can also be
seen as a necessary condition for women's interest to be taken into account. Without the active participation of women
and the incorporation of women's perspective at all levels of decision-making, the goals of equality, development, and
peace can not be achieved." — Beijing Platform for Action 1995
UN Secretary – General’s Message for IWD “The international community is finally beginning to understand a fundamental
principle: women are every bit as affected as any man by the challenges facing humanity in the 21st century -- in
economic and social development, as well as in peace and security. Often, they are more affected. It is, therefore,
right and indeed necessary that women should be engaged in the decision-making processes in all areas, with equal
strength and in equal numbers.
The world is also starting to grasp that there is no policy more effective in promoting development, health and
education than the empowerment of women and girls. And I would venture that no policy is more important in preventing
conflict, or in achieving reconciliation after a conflict has ended.
We do have achievements to celebrate in women’s representation around the world. In January of this year, the proportion
of women in national parliaments reached a new global high. There are now 11 women Heads of State or Government, in
countries on every continent. And three countries – Chile, Spain and Sweden – now have gender parity in Government. But
we have far, far more to do. The rate of progress overall is slow. Let us remember that in individual countries, the
increase in the number of women in decision-making has not happened by itself. Rather, it is often the result of
institutional and electoral initiatives, such as the adoption of goals and quotas, political party commitment and
sustained mobilization. It is also the result of targeted and concerted measures to improve the balance between life and
work. Those are lessons every nation -- and the United Nations -- need to take very seriously.”
|In December President; Griselda Kenyon sent a letter to all members – some excerpts are included here.
You will have seen the Newsflash which outlines the changes which have taken place in the office in Geneva; moving to a
new home, on the other side of the bridge from where we are now, near the centre of town. The IFUW Board is very
grateful indeed to the staff for all the enormous amount of work that this has involved, and also for the work that they
have done since the Conference in Perth to carry out the instructions for change that were decided then. …..
I was in Geneva in early December, and went to the office. Almost everything was in crates and boxes and there were
piles of things to throw away as always with any move. The staff have worked very hard. The new office is smaller and
cheaper, but it is in a nice part of town and can be made into an attractive place to work. I am pleased to be able to
tell you that Leigh Bradford Ratteree has accepted the job of IFUW Secretary General when Murielle (Joye) retires. Leigh
has worked for us for many years and understands fully the complicated future that we face. We all have faith in her and
it will be much easier for everyone to have someone in charge who understands the very individual nature of our
organisation. We are very grateful to her for taking us on. …….
I am sure that many of you remember Mary Purcell, former President of IFUW and more recently, head of the Group of IFUW
representatives at the UN in New York. She has now decided that she must retire from that position. Mary's time at the
UN covers a long span of great events in world and UN history and that of many Heads of State and Presidents, both of
the United States and of IFUW! Her enthusiasm and knowledge has established IFUW as a known NGO at the UN and informed
us of what has been going on. We wish her a happy retirement ….and give her our thanks.
I was in Washington in November and lunched with the Executive Director of AAUW and had a useful conversation. They have
a committee of three looking at the problem of affiliation and dues but with no results as yet. They are apparently
consulting with a group of the members. …..
I wish you all a happy, prosperous and peaceful New Year.
Retiring , Director General for IFUW, Murielle Joye, writes that the international staff wishes to continue to provide a
quality service despite these drastic cuts. This will need full support, understanding and enthusiasm of everyone.
NB The new address of IFUW will be 10, rue du LAC, 1207 Geneva, Switzerland.
This is one of the IFUW programmes that we in NSW have supported in the past which in no small way assists the development
of our organization in developing countries. It is timely to remind you of its ideals and activities. In the words of
IFUW it “encourages international solidarity and partnerships between federations and associations. Its primary goal is
to support projects empowering women and girls through education and leadership development.” The Fund is named in
memory of Dr Bina Roy, IFUW President 1971 – 1974, first Asian woman to be president, a remarkable teacher and
educational advisor who served on many national and international committees. She foresaw that Partners in Development
would be a positive force in the future direction of IFUW.
Donor contributions help pay the IFUW membership fees of national affiliates in more than 30 countries. This enables
these groups to keep and invest an equivalent sum on local projects. The programme works for the advancement of women
and girls while enabling groups of women graduates throughout the world to be part of IFUW - making IFUW a truly global
organization. It currently supports projects in 32 developing countries and countries in transition. IFUW members
throughout the world can participate
- By submitting a project proposal: National affiliates may submit a project for funding.
- By making a general contribution: National affiliates, branches and individual members may become donor partners by
sending a general contribution to the IFUW BRPID programme. General contributions are allocated to the projects where
financial support is most needed.
- By making a specific contribution: National affiliates, branches and individual members may designate their donation
for a specific project or number of projects. Details for the supported countries are on the web-site. Specific
donations should preferably be a minimum of 150 Swiss Francs or approx $150 Australian.
The BRPID Programme contributes to making IFUW a truly global organization as it enables national affiliates with
limited funds to be a member of the International Federation while carrying out projects working to improve the status
of women and girls in their own countries. BRPID contributions received are used to pay two thirds of the IFUW
membership fees of affiliates running approved projects. These affiliates, in turn, are able to use the amount that they
would have had to send to IFUW on their own projects. The support from the BRPID Programme does not cover the total
amount of the IFUW membership fees owed. NFAs receiving support are required to pay one third of their fees themselves.
From Marianne Bernheim, IFUW Representative to UNESCO, - Paris 2 March, 2006
In 2006, The United Nations Education, Science and Culture Organisation (UNESCO) celebrates its 60th anniversary. IFUW
has been closely associated with UNESCO and its predecessors almost since its own inception in 1919. This is not
surprising, given the similarity between IFUW’s objectives of promoting international cooperation and peace through
education, in particular for women and girls, and those of UNESCO, with its focus on science, education and culture.
In her report, Marianne Bernheim, Coordinator of the team of IFUW Representatives to UNESCO, describes the joint history
of UNESCO and IFUW, from the involvement of IFUW co-founder Virginia Gildersleeve as the only woman to participate in
the drafting and signing of the United Nations Charter on 26 June 1946, down to the present day and IFUW’s role in
celebrations for UNESCO’s anniversary. IFUW was one of the first NGOs to be invited to adopt a consultative role in
1948, and was granted “Formal consultation relations” status in 1996.
Another expression of the close relationship between the two bodies has been IFUW’s involvement with various UN ‘days’,
‘years’ and decades’, most significantly IFUW’s continuing support for International Women’s Day (March 8th, begun in
1977), but including also the International Year of the Family (1994) and the Decade of Education for Sustainable
Development, inaugurated in March 2005.
The role of women and girls and their education are crucial to many of UNESCO’s aims and projects, and therefore the
relationship is a vital one for both organisations. For the full report, visit:
Vice President, Shirley Manion, who travelled to London to visit family at Christmas, passed through Dubai, where she
purchased the local “Gulf Today”, 4 January 2006. She sent to Merle and me for our respective AFUW interests, the
following article; the author was Wahidullah Amani.
WAZHMA is in the seventh grade at Zarghona Ana High School in Kandahar. This makes her an exception in this conservative
southern province and Taliban stronghold, where, according to some estimates, less than one girl in 10 receives even a
primary education. "There are 60 or 70 houses in my neighborhood," said the solemn 16-year-old. "But there is only one
other girl who goes to school. Many of my friends want to go but their fathers won't let them. Our neighbors make fun of
us, of my family, and say that we are not good peo¬ple because I'm going to school. I don't listen to them."
According to the Afghan constitution, education is a universal right and obligation. Parents are required to send both
boys and girls to school up to the 12th grade. But in practice the law is almost universally flouted, and the government
appears powerless to do anything about it. "Yes, it is true that the constitution guarantees the right to education,"
said Hayatullah Rafiqi, head of the department of education for Kandahar province. "But we cannot send soldiers to
people's houses to demand that fathers send their daughters to school. If we tried, nobody would send their children to
school, because the government would be pushing them. It would be counterproductive."
Under the Taliban, girls were banned from education, and girls' schools were closed. Since the regime's demise more than
four years ago, the government has put money and effort into getting girls back into the classroom. Indeed, female
school attendance is hailed as one of the new administration's major accomplishments.
Rafiqi insists that Kandahar is doing well in this regard: According to his figures, 70 percent of school-age girls in
the "provincial capital are attending school. Across the province, Rafiqi said, 40 percent are doing so. "A lot more
people are ready to let their daughters go to school than in the period before the Taliban," said Rafiqi.
"The department of education has programs on television promoting female education, to convince parents that school is
not a bad place. We have a lot of refugees returning from Pakistan and Iran, they saw educated women there, and are
ready to let their daughters study." But his numbers just do not add up, insist education workers. "The government gives
these numbers to show their success," said Rangina Hamidi, head of Afghans for Civil Society, a non-government
organisation. "But it is just not true."
Hamidi estimates that no more than 10 percent of girls in the provincial capital are in school, and that the numbers are
far lower in rural areas. Even Rafiqi acknowledges that only 24,000 of the 130,000 students in Kandahar's schools are
girls. There are only 12 girls’ schools in the entire province, compared with 328 for boys.
Mahmad Omar, 35, has a small business selling gas. He has seven children, three boys and four girls. One son works with
him, the other two are in school. But all his daughters are at home. "School is not for girls," he said. "I don't let
them go. Girls should be at home. If they go to school, people will see them on the street, and that would be very
shameful for me." Omar is convinced that education runs contrary to Islamic tradition. "After they go to school, girls
think that they can go anywhere, that they do not have to wear the hijab (head covering), and that they don't have to
hide their faces. Islam does not accept that."
Asefa, 18, is one of the lucky few that are in school. But she has to run the gauntlet of condemning looks every day.
"Men in the street laugh at me, and call me names," she said. "They say, 'Why are you going to school? You're a girl and
you don't need this.' But I begged my family for months to let me go, and they finally did."
Many other friends have dropped out of school, unable to face the stares and the jeers, she said. Even those who favor
female education are nervous about the security situation. Kandahar is unstable and, some say, getting worse, with a
rise in suicide bombings and armed clashes between insurgents and the security forces. The Taliban may be gaining ground
thanks to a rising tide of religious discontent with the foreign troop presence.
"I like school," said Amanullah, 52. "I have five children, two girls and three boys. The boys are going to school, but
the girls are not. "I'm uncertain about their security— I can't allow something to happen to them in the streets or in
school. I know that educated people are good and I want to educate my children, but not now. My daughters beg me every
day to let them go to school. I say, “If the situation improves, I promise I will let you go.'"
That promise may not be realized soon. In the past year, 150 schools have closed throughout the province, said an
education worker with a local non-gov¬ernment agency who asked not to be identified. One school principal has been
killed and teachers have been threatened. In several districts "night letters" - covertly distributed pamphlets - have
been distributed warning parents not to send their daughters to school and threatening violence to those who do not heed
the warning. At least seven schools have been set on fire.
In one district, Maruf, all the schools have been closed for the last nine months after a campaign of intimidation. In
others, such as Dand, Maiwand and Panjuai, they are open only intermittently, depending on the security situation. Much
of the strife is attributed to the Taliban. But, maintains Hamidi, the anti-education tradition predates the
"When my family were refugees in Quetta (Pakistan) 20 years ago, we received the same kind of warnings," said Hamidi,
who grew up and was educated in the United States. "My father had to take us out of school. There was no Taliban then."
The only solution is for the government to get more serious about education, say observers. A concerted effort by
officials, education professionals and religious scholars is needed if female education in Kandahar is to make any
headway. But these same observers say the government does not have the resolve to go against tradition and prejudice.
"The government does not care about education," said one worker with a non¬governmental agency who declined to be
identified. They could open the schools if they wanted to."
Our State CIR, Bev Pavey, recently alerted me as Editor to the present state of affairs concerning the
plan to abolish the UN Human Rights Commission and to replace it with the Human Rights Council with a message which had
been received from the IFUW UN Representative, Conchita Ponchini, commencing -"On 1 February 2006 the Co-Chair of the
General Assembly produced a text regarding the new Council of Human Rights…" The need to check on some detail in Conchita’s notes led me to the internet and to consider more deeply the ramifications of what is an extremely important
step in the pursuit of human rights and in the reform of the United Nations Organisation.
“The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) was created in 1946 by the United Nations in response to international outcry over
grave human rights violations following World Wars I and II. As the world’s first and only international human rights
monitoring body, the CHR became the primary venue for responding to human rights violations around the world. Then US
First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt played a pivotal role in the formation of the Commission and was elected as its first
Chairperson. She also played a vital role in writing substantial portions of what now stands as the most important
proclamation of human rights—the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Currently, the CHR is composed of 53 UN Member States that are elected for three-year terms. It meets for six weeks
every year to consider cases of human rights violations from around the globe. Once it reviews a case, the CHR renders a
decision in the form of a resolution and calls on the violating state and the international community at large to take
decisive steps to address the abuses that have taken place.
Throughout the decades, the Commission has brought the world’s attention to the issue of human rights and attempted to
rectify abuses committed against individuals of all regions and countries.
Yet with the 21st century come new challenges and obstacles, and the international community must make sure that
increased threats to human life, liberty, and security is met with an equally strong and capable human rights monitoring
body. To this end, world leaders must draw on the Commission’s mandate while simultaneously improving key procedural
aspects to combat human rights violations more effectively.”
One of the challenges faced by the Commission is how members are elected. Currently, membership guarantees that all
regions are represented. However, this has lead to the exclusion of some countries while allowing over-inclusion of
others. Furthermore, it has allowed countries such as Liberia, Zimbabwe, Saudi Arabia and Sudan to cover up human rights
abuses in their countries rather than advance better practices. In addition, the Commission on Human Rights presently
meets six weeks every year. Thus, it is difficult to give crises that arise outside those weeks sufficient attention.
In an effort to continue the work of the Commission and keep the protection of human rights at the forefront, a major
report, the High Level Panel Report on Threats, Challenges and Change, called for an enhanced human rights body in
December 2004. In March 2005, Secretary General Kofi Annan released his report In Larger Freedom in which he proposed
shifting from the Commission on Human Rights to a Human Rights Council. From September 14-16, the United Nations hosted
the largest gathering of world leaders in history. More than 150 heads of state agreed to strengthen human rights at the
United Nations and resolved to create a Human Rights Council. Although this is an important step, countries could not
agree on the exact makeup, criteria, or a firm timetable for the creation of the new Council. Negotiators agreed to
continue discussions over the course of the year to overcome disagreements.”
The Co-Chair has put forward a statement of eleven fundamental principles followed by sixteen specifics.
PP4 Reaffirming also that while the significance of national and regional particularities and various historical,
cultural and religious backgrounds must be borne in mind, all States, regardless of their political, economic and
cultural systems, have the duty to promote and protect all human tights and fundamental freedoms,
PP5 Emphasizing the responsibilities of all States. in conformity with the Charter, to respect human rights and
fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind as to race, colour, sex, language or religion, political
or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status,
PP6 Acknowledging that peace and security, development and human rights are the pillars of the United Nations system and
the foundations for collective security and well¬being and recognizing that development peace and security and human
rights are interlinked and mutually reinforcing,
PP7 Recognizing the work undertaken by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights and the need to preserve and build
on its achievements and to redress its shortcomings
PPIO Acknowledging that non-governmental organizations play an important role, at the national, regional and
international level, in the promotion and protection of human rights, ………
The General Assembly decides to establish a Human Rights Council, based in Geneva in replacement of the Commission on
Human Rights, as a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly.
OP2 Decides that the Council will be responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights
and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind, in a fair and equal manner.
OP3 Decides that the Council should address situations of violations of human rights, including gross and systematic
violations, and make recommendations thereon, and promote effective coordination and the mainstreaming of human rights
within the United Nations system.
OP5 Decides further that the Council will, inter alia,
- promote human rights education and learning as well as advisory services, technical assistance and capacity-building,
to be provided in consultation and with the consent of Member States,
- serve as a forum for dialogue on thematic issues on all human rights,
- make recommendations to the General Assembly for the further development of international law in the field of human
- promote … the follow-up of the goals and commitments related to the promotion and protection of human rights
emanating from United Nations conferences and summits,
OP7 Decides that the Human Rights Council shall consist of 45 Member States which shall be elected directly and
individually by secret ballots by the General Assembly by two-thirds / simple majority (still to be determined) of the
members present and voting.
The membership shall be based on equitable geographic distribution and seats shall be distributed as follows among
regional groups: 12 members from Africa, 13 from Asia, 5 from Eastern Europe, 8 from Latin America and the Caribbean and
7 from Western Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The members of the Council will serve for a period of
three years and shall not be eligible for immediate re-election after two consecutive terms.
O8 Decides that the membership in the Council shall be open to all Member States of the United Nations. When electing
members of the Council, Member States shall take into consideration the candidates’ contribution to the promotion and
protection of human rights and the voluntary pledges and commitments made thereto.
When electing members of the Council, Members shall also take into account whether there are any situations that
constitute systematic and gross violations of human rights or any agreed measures currently in place at the United
Nations against a candidate for human rights violations.
OPI0 The Council shall meet regularly throughout the year and schedule not fewer than three sessions per year, including
a main session, for a total duration of no less than ten weeks and shall hold special sessions when needed at the
request of a Member of the Council with the support of one-third of the membership at the Council.
OP16 Decides that the Council shall review its work and functioning five years after its establishment and report to the
February 23, 2006 -- General Assembly President, Jan Eliasson, released a draft resolution creating a new Human Rights
Council to replace the discredited Human Rights Commission. Diplomats involved in the negotiation said the final
structure was a great improvement. You will note that the session from 14 March will still be the Commission on Human
Rights; the election of the first members of the Council will take place on 9 May 2006 and that the first meeting of the
Council will be convened on 16 June 2006.
On the same day, Louise Arbour of Canada, current High Commissioner for Human Rights since July 2004, immediately issued
a statement urging support for the Human Rights Council.
“The proposal provides a unique opportunity to start putting in place a reinvigorated system for the promotion and
protection of fundamental freedoms around the world and deserves the support of member States. Failure to adopt the
proposal threatens to set back the human rights cause immeasurably. The text submitted ….has the features to allow the
future Council to deal more objectively, and credibly, with human rights violations worldwide. It sets standards for new
member countries, who will be asked to make an explicit commitment to promote and protect human rights. It also provides
for the suspension of members who commit gross and systematic abuses.
Unlike the Commission, the Council will be required to review on a periodic basis the human rights records of all
countries, beginning with its members. No country will be beyond scrutiny, and no longer will countries be able to use
membership of the UN’ s premier human rights body to shield themselves or allies from criticism or censure for rights
The Council will also meet for longer periods throughout the year and be able to respond quickly to developing human
rights crises. Potential violators would be on notice that the world was watching permanently, not just for six weeks in
the spring, when the Commission traditionally comes together.
Let us be clear the proposal now before the General Assembly is the result of compromise. It cannot be an ideal
blueprint. And there is no reason to believe that more negotiating time will yield a better result. But even an
institution that is perfect on paper cannot succeed if the international community does not make the necessary change in
the culture of defending human rights. It was in large part its failure to make this change - its inability to reinvent
itself after laying down the framework for the international human rights system - that hobbled the Commission. The case
of Rwanda is sadly instructive. There the Commission’s procedures worked, yet the investigator’s warnings went unheeded.
The political will and commitment of the international community will be as important to making the new Council work as
any changes in structure or working methods.”
Secretary General, Kofi Annan, says the UN's credibility is at stake. The creation of the council is seen as a key
component of UN reform. He warned that, if we are not careful and we make the wrong moves that unravel the agreement on
the Council, we could be placed in a situation where we are left with a Human Rights Commission that we all claim is
The opinion of non-UN organizations is guardedly optimistic as they issued press statements in the wake of these
developments. The statement of Amnesty International is typical of the more measured of them.
Amnesty International calls on all governments to adopt without delay the draft resolution on the Human Rights Council
presented today by the President of the General Assembly as the first concrete step in meeting the 2005 World Summit’s
commitment to strengthen the United Nations' Human Rights machinery.
"This is an historic opportunity that governments must not squander for selfish political interests. It is time for
those that have imposed so many tawdry compromises to allow the General Assembly to establish the Human Rights Council",
said Yvonne Terlingen, Amnesty International's UN representative. Still, this is only a first step. Governments must now
show the political will to make the Council an effective human rights body," she said. "The Council to be established by
the resolution will be weaker than hoped, because of many governments' failures to follow through on their stated
commitment to human rights. While the President’s text provides a sound basis on which to create a better body than the
Commission on Human Rights, it must not be diluted further.”
Dr Elizabeth Mary Liggins (1920-2005)
AFUW members throughout Australia were saddened by the news that Elizabeth Liggins had passed away. Until her stroke
incapacitated her Elizabeth had regularly contributed both her professional expertise and her friendship and loyalty to
our organization. She had also been an active participant in Virginia Gildersleeve International Fund and its Australian
Committee. Her gentle but intelligent, strong minded presence greatly valued.
Her nephew, Stephen Liggins, reveals her career as we pay tribute to her life and work among us.
Elizabeth Mary Liggins was born on 10 December 1920 at Lockhart in country New South Wales to John and Mary Liggins. She
was the younger sister of William. Her family moved to Mosman in Sydney and Elizabeth completed her schooling at
Redlands at Cremorne.
She took First Class Honours from Sydney University in 1942. She received her PhD from the University of London. Her
thesis was titled ‘The Expression of Causal Relationship in Old English Prose’ and was submitted in June 1955 by
‘Elizabeth M. Liggins (University College)’. Elizabeth taught for a number of years at New England University, Armidale.
She then moved to Sydney in the late 1960s and took up residence in St Ives.
In 1967 she became one of the foundation members of the School of English Studies (later the School of English,
Linguistics and Media) at Macquarie University. Her field of research was Old English Language and Literature. She had
broad interests and played a major role in the teaching of what was known as the ‘literary uses of language’ at
undergraduate and honours level especially.
She was known outside Australia for her work on Beowulf and on the Old English Orosius. For example, she published in
the journal Anglia in 1970. Using meticulous detail she used syntactical arguments to support the view that King Albert
was not the author of Orosius.
Her students remember her as a caring teacher of great imagination and knowledge. One said that she ‘appreciated her wit
and charm’. Another said, ‘She had elegance, intellectual brilliance, style and much kindness in her character’, ‘a firm
Christian belief’ and ‘certainly wanted to see women use their talents to achieve their entitlements’. Her colleagues,
on both the general and the academic staff, remember her as wise and patient, meticulous and painstaking.
From the beginning at Macquarie, she played a large role in the senior administration of both the School and of the
wider University. She established and led what was then the Early English Discipline. Among many firsts, she was the
first female member of academic staff elected to Senate. In the late 1970s, when the University by-laws were amended to
allow for the election of non-professorial staff as Heads of School, she became the first female Head of School in the
University as Head of the School of English and Linguistics. She served two terms before her retirement in 1984.
She tried to leave the University without any fuss or ceremony, but was greatly moved by the multitude of cards and
presents that were spontaneously left for her. Her contribution to learning is commemorated by the ‘Elizabeth Liggins
Prize’, awarded for excellence in a BA(Hons) thesis in the English Department.
After suffering a stroke in the late 1990s, she moved to take up residence at ‘The Pines’ in Terrey Hills, which
subsequently became known as Terrey Hills Nursing Home. She became increasingly frail during 2005. She passed away
peacefully on 14 November, aged 84, having suffered a stroke about a week earlier. Her funeral was held at the Northern
Suburbs Crematorium on 18 November. The Rev Joe Burrows of Christ Church Anglican Church, St Ives took the service.
Elizabeth used to attend this church prior to her move to Terrey Hills. Her nephew Stephen Liggins read from the Bible
and her nephews, John and Geoffrey Liggins, gave speeches. The service was attended by family and friends. People
travelled from Victoria and the ACT. Members of the Department of English and Linguistics at Macquarie University were
To her remaining family she was a much-loved sister-in-law and aunt. She was an integral part of family events,
attending birthdays and Christmas celebrations, often giving presents with cryptically worded cards. Elizabeth will be
greatly missed by all.
REPORTS FROM BRANCHES
Dr Joan Relke began her fascinating talk, The Archetypal Female In Art, with a brief and admirably lucid
introduction to Jungian philosophy: outlining the three levels of consciousness, the ego or fully conscious level,
the subconscious and the collective unconscious. She pointed out that the conscious level is the one on which we
operate in our daily lives and the subconscious level is sometimes available to us in dreams, but the unconscious
level is not accessible. Jung postulated that this unconscious level must exist in order to explain why similar
ideas concerning religion and myth exist in all cultures.
Dr Relke then went on to outline the importance of Jung’s archetypal figures in the subconscious, such as the
father, the hero, the maiden and, above all, the mother, illustrating these with characters from the myths of
Greece, Rome, India and China. She explored, briefly, Jung’s belief that female archetypes were a dominant influence
in the lives of men and male archetypes in the lives of females, which explained the very dominant role held by
female goddesses, such as Aphrodite and Demeter.
Their essential roles as desirable love/sex object and mother, respectively, are replicated in all patriarchal
cultures. Men’s ambivalent attitudes to powerful women are demonstrated in the contrasting characteristics of these
goddesses, for example in mother goddesses who are, on the one hand loving and caring and, on the other, vengeful
and destructive, as is seen in the Hindu goddess Kali.
Joan Relke, an accomplished professional sculptor, then moved on to show how Jung’s archetypes had influenced both
her life and her art. Her dream of an underwater deity was so powerful that she was persuaded to give up a
university course that she had worked hard to be enrolled in and her figurine of this figure, whom she later
realised was the Inuit goddess Sedna, was quite exquisite, with her fish tail, fin, flowing hair and one hand waving
free. This led on to a discussion of mermaids and female sea-monsters in which her audience vigorously participated.
Other figures alluded to the Pythia at Delphi and the power of serpents associated with women such as the myth of
A most interesting theme was her opposition to Jung’s theory that archetypes of the opposite gender were most
influential for men and women. She showed that female artists shared the male preoccupation with female archetypes,
proving that it is the feminine that is the very essence of creativity.
We were fortunate to have Professor Tony Adams, Chairperson of the Global Commission for Certification of the
Eradication of Poliomyelitis, as guest speaker at the October meeting last year. The goal of the Global Polio
Eradication Initiative is to ensure that no child will ever again know the crippling effects of poliomyelitis. This
enormous undertaking seems so daunting in its scope, yet so inspiring with its vision and ability to overcome what
would seem to be insurmountable obstacles.
Polio is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus which invades the nervous system and can cause total
paralysis in a matter of hours. It can strike at any age, but affects mainly children under three. Many of us
remember the large polio epidemics that caused panic every summer during the 1940s and 50s in industrialized
countries (Australia, USA and Western Europe). People with polio affecting the respiratory muscles were immobilized
inside "iron lungs" - huge metal cylinders that operated like a pair of bellows to regulate their breathing and keep
In 1955 Dr Jonas Salk developed an inactivated (killed) polio vaccine, IPV. This was followed in 1961 by Dr Albert
Sabin’s live attenuated (weakened) oral polio vaccine, OPV. As its name suggests, OPV is an orally applicable
vaccine which does not have to be administered by a trained health worker; does not require sterile injection
equipment and is relatively inexpensive. Soon after the introduction of these effective vaccines, polio was brought
under control and practically eliminated as a public health problem in the industrialized countries. The problem
however remained to be addressed in the developing countries.
In 1988, the World Health Assembly (WHA), the annual meeting of the ministers of health of all Member States of the
World Health Organization, voted to launch a global goal to eradicate polio. When the Global Polio Eradication
Initiative (GPEI) was launched, wild poliovirus was endemic in more than 125 countries on five continents,
paralysing more than 1000 children every day. Today, polio is endemic in Nigeria, India, Pakistan, Niger,
Afghanistan and Egypt.
The GPEI, spearheaded by national governments, the World Health Organization (WHO), Rotary International, the US
Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and UNICEF, is the largest public health initiative the world has
ever known. Since 1988, some two billion children around the world have been immunized against polio thanks to the
unprecedented cooperation of more than 200 countries and 20 million volunteers, backed by an international
investment of US$3 billion.
Today, the disease has been eliminated from most of the world but, at the same time, the areas of transmission are
more concentrated than ever - 98 percent of all global cases are found in India, Nigeria and Pakistan.
The risk of wild poliovirus being imported into polio-free countries and areas still exists. In 2005, the number of
polio cases due to importations is, for the first time, significantly higher than cases due to endemic transmission.
Eleven previously polio-free countries reported polio cases in 2005 (Somalia, Yemen, Indonesia, Sudan, Ethiopia,
Angola, Mali, Cameroon, Chad, Eritrea and Nepal). However the commitment to polio eradication is high thanks to
powerful new tools like monovalent oral polio vaccines and to visible progress in the most difficult endemic areas.
The remaining challenges to a polio-free world are:
- Primary challenge: Breaking the final chains of polio transmission in the endemic countries.
- Acute challenge: Quickly stopping polio outbreaks in previously polio-free countries.
- Cross-cutting challenges:
*Maintaining funding and political commitment;
*Addressing low routine immunization
rates in polio-free countries;
* Ensuring sufficient vaccine is available.
There is no cure for polio, it can only be prevented through immunization. Polio vaccine, given multiple times,
almost always protects a child for life. Many of the countries whose children remain under threat from this dreadful
disease are experiencing unstable governments, civil wars and the violence associated with such events. It goes
without saying that volunteers risk their lives to bring polio vaccines to children in these hostile environments -
a sobering thought indeed.
A warm welcome will be extended to any AFUW member who finds themselves in the City at the time of any of our
meetings. We have planned new and exciting venues for our meetings and talks but in response to demand we are also
arranging some evening venues for those who find it difficult to access the city in the day.
At our meeting on 16 February we were pleased to welcome Jeanne-Louise Bieler from Switzerland. She belongs to the
Geneva Branch where previously she has been President. The Branch is about 150 members and mainly younger women. She
considered that the reason for this is that they have strong links with the one university in Geneva and have close
contacts with women PhD students whom they support/mentor and provide opportunity for those they select to give
talks on the presentation of their PhD topic.
Part of the presentation for PhD in Europe is a live presentation to their examiners. Their focus is on networking.
As here, more than 50% women are undertaking university study so they don't give small grants to students. They
provide one grant of 4000 Swiss francs. Nationally they have one of $15000 Swiss Francs and this is attractive to
PhD students who actively apply for it. (One Swiss franc is roughly the same as one Australian dollar)
In May this year we will also be personally presenting scholarships of $250 to two Tertiary Preparation Certificate
Students at both Meadowbank and Ultimo TAFE. It will be an opportunity to discuss the work and aims of the AFUW
since we have found there is little known of our organisation in these areas. We intend to follow up the academic
progress of our previous awardees.
Members and their friends enjoyed a very happy occasion at the Christmas Lunch held on December 5th at Dunmore
Lang College, Macquarie University. Professor Ian Waterhouse, foundation Professor of Psychology and Head of the
School of Behavioural Sciences at Macquarie University was the guest speaker. However, it was not his own field of
study nor even anything relating to Macquarie University which was the subject of his talk but rather his father,
the late Professor E.G. Waterhouse, his mother Janet, and what it was like to grow up with his three brothers in the
atmosphere of their delightful home, Eryldene, in Gordon, in the first half of last century.
Our speaker was born eighty four years ago at Eryldene, the youngest of four boys and so was often referred to as
Quartus. He remembers his parents as being very loving and caring. His father would take the boys for walks in the
bush at weekends and bred in them a love of nature but music and art were also great influences in their family
His father was a brilliant language student, graduating from the University of Sydney in 1901 with a triple first in
English, French and German. He taught modern languages at Newington College, The Kings School, Sydney Grammar School
and then at Sydney Teachers’ College. In 1925 he travelled overseas in Germany, France and the United Kingdom. He
met his future wife, the Scottish Janet Kelly, while she was perfecting her French in France. He visited her later
in Kilmanock and they agreed to correspond. This led to their marriage which proved a very happy and lasting union.
Though education was probably considered to be his chief mission in life, Professor E.G. Waterhouse’s abiding
interest was landscape gardening.
Not only is the beautiful garden at Eryldene testament to this but all who have wandered through the
Vice-Chancellor’s Courtyard, at the University of Sydney, especially when the camellias and azaleas are in full
bloom, can witness his hand in its design.
Before Eryldene was built, Professor E.G. had seen homes designed by Hardy Wilson, one of the leading architects in
Sydney at that time. He liked what he saw and the story goes that he had a handsome door-knocker which he showed to
Hardy Wilson saying “Build me a house around this”. The garden of Eryldene evolved around the house in a series of
garden rooms. Plants had to go in just the right place, taking into account their height and width. Gradually the
growing of camellias became an abiding passion. Some will have seen his books on this subject, “Camellia Quest” and
“Camellia Trail”. His mother complemented this horticultural interest with her expertise in ikebana.
Professor Ian Waterhouse remembers the many interesting visitors to the home when he was young. Many were academic
staff from the University of Sydney from a wide range of faculties. Another group were consular personnel from many
countries. Then there were political, social and cultural figures such as Sir Philip and Lady Game, the Gloucesters,
Norman and Lionel Lindsay, Margaret Preston and William Dobell. When the camellia flowering season was at its peak
there was a constant flow of visitors.
Professor Waterhouse dwelt, perhaps a little wistfully, on numerous simple pleasures of family life at Eryldene. He
transported us to innocent scenes of his childhood with which most of us can identify to a greater or lesser extent.
He is justly proud of the home and garden created and left to posterity by his parents. In his final words to us he
quoted John Keats “a thing of beauty is a joy for ever”.
It was wonderful to see so many people gathered at Cath Davies’ spacious home to hear Associate Professor
Kristine French give a first rate account of the life of Janet Cosh, the intrepid local botanist, who catalogued the
flora of the Southern Highlands between 1970 and 1989. The display of her research and drawings was inspiring! That
so many braved the threatening rain clouds to enjoy the palms and azaleas, the spreading lawns and sunken gardens of
"Karrara" was encouraging. Old friends and new acquaintances chatted over a delicious afternoon tea. The money
raised from the Garden Party exceeded expectations.
This enabled us to donate $500 to assist East Timorese university student, Ina, in her law studies.
We had another opportunity to meet in convivial surroundings, for our Christmas Dinner at Gilbert's Restaurant in
Mittagong. Gilbert's has a fine reputation for good cuisine, and our celebrity guest speaker, Rosemary Stanton, gave
us a very entertaining address on enjoying a healthy Christmas, plus latest information about international health
trends. We raised over $500 for our scholarship fund.
The New Year got off to a flying start, with a dinner at the award winning "Eschalot Restaurant" at Links House,
Bowral. Our guest speaker, local federal parliamentarian, Joanna Gash, informed us about the current situation
regarding the effective representation of women's issues in the government process. She works harder than most
people in a job that she loves.
We are now looking forward to our March dinner meeting, with guest speaker Lillian Arthur. A personal story of her
search for her son who was forcibly taken for adoption. Film Australia has made a documentary, to be shown on SBS,
of Lillians' 30 year journey for justice and redress.
For our February meeting we invited one of our newer members, Vicki Cowling, OAM, to be our guest speaker with
the title “I am a rock, I am an island…” (Simon,1972).
Vicki has been an advocate for children of parents with mental illness and their families since 1993, through
research, project development, professional education, conference presentations and publications including two books
about children of parents with mental illness. Vicki is a social worker and registered psychologist, and has worked
in partnership with consumers and careers for many years. She was awarded an overseas study tour in 2000, and in
January 2005 was awarded the Order of Australia medal for her contribution to the community.
Our members and friends enjoyed a Spring Luncheon at the Greenwich Sailing Club at which the biographer
Jacqueline Kent was our speaker. She spoke first about the methods of writing a biography and then specifically
about how she was able to collect material for her current work-in-progress on the internationally renowned pianist
Hepzibah Menuhin. We look forward to the publication of Jacqueline’s book in about two year’s time.
Christmas again was a happy occasion with a Sunday party for members and friends, held at the home of Judy and Jim
Fitzpatrick at Woolwich. We continue to have around 60 people at our functions (three per year) whilst our Book
Group and Theatre Group continue to be very active.
Members were saddened to learn of Enid’s death on 8 December at the age of 81. Enid represented the Illawarra Branch on
the Central Committee for a number of years, then when it closed, not wanting to lose her contribution, members elected
her as a general committee member. She had worked hard to keep the Branch numbers viable. It was due to her efforts that
the Gina Savage Award at Wollongong University, which the Branch regularly donated, was able to be maintained, $200
awarded to the best female graduate in the Faculty of Science. Enid greatly enjoyed attending the presentations.
Enid participated on a much broader scene, travelling from Wollongong to attend activities, both social and
administrative, as recently as last year’s Awards function. She was also very interested in the Virginia Gildersleeve
International Fund. Enid was a valuable committee member as she was far-sighted person yet with a practical view of the
matter at hand and a dry sense of humour.