I am pleased to announce the recipients of my inaugural ‘Local Heroes’ campaign.
This award recognises and celebrates individuals who have gone to great efforts through their own work or that of their organisation to support the Narre Warren South community - especially during these difficult times of a pandemic.
There are many individuals and organisations providing incredible support and services to our local community and it is so hard to announce only two recipients today. I would also like to congratulate and thank all the people volunteering and providing support to their groups and to the wider community.
Kelly Warren established and runs a charity community food pantry, Bk 2 Basics which supports people in the City of Casey who are experiencing homelessness or financial difficulties.
Alongside her dedicated volunteers, she assists over 150 people a day who seek basic food needs from Bk 2 Basics.
The service has become an integral part of our community service network and her work is so important in supporting our most vulnerable, especially during the bushfires and coronavirus pandemic.
Bassir Qadiri’s tireless work with the Bakhtar Cultural Association has provided much-needed support to the local Afghan community while promoting multiculturalism, harmony and gender equality.
Mr Qadiri’s support for locals has included organising food vouchers, providing free interpreting, establishing an online library, book delivery services, holding online poetry and music events, and organising a virtual Afghan Independence Day in partnership with the Afghanistan Embassy in Canberra.
Mr Qadiri has a passion for cultural diversity as he encourages cross-cultural communication, understanding of Afghan Australian values, and inclusiveness.
His work in community advocacy has changed the lives of many, including Afghan women affected by family violence and those who are isolated due to cultural and language barriers.
Prizes of $500, certificates and public awareness promotion will be provided to the organisations of Mr Qadiri and Ms Warren.
Ms Kelly and Mr Qadiri are truly Local Heroes whose work is worthy of recognition and celebration as they both make an invaluable contribution to our community.