Celebrating Our Local Heroes

State Member for Narre Warren South Gary Maas, is pleased to announce the recipients of his 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. Mr Maas also congratulates and thanks all the people volunteering and providing support to their groups and to the wider community.

Ms 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.

Mr 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.

Ms Warren 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.

Prizes of $500, certificates and public awareness promotion will be provided to the organisations of Mr Qadiri and Ms Warren.


Quotes attributable to Member for Narre Warren South Gary Maas:

“Kelly Warren has been working and advocating so hard in order to help others. Bk 2 Basics has been a stalwart of our area and Kelly has overcome many challenges to continue providing basic food items to those in need.”

“Bassir Qadiri represents the best of our community. He has worked tirelessly to help others during uncertain times and should be recognised for the incredible work he has done in community connectivity and advocacy.”

“This year has been difficult for everybody. The Narre Warren South community’s support for one another has been amazing.”

“I am grateful to all those volunteers, non-government organisations, charities, healthcare workers, essential services and people simply supporting their neighbours, friends and family as we face the challenges of COVID-19. Thank you all for your service to our community.”


2 October 2020