Meet, greet and be inspired at Friendship Cafe

Cr. Seema AbdullahShepparton’s female immigrants will have a chance to forge new connections and learn more about opportunities locally, in a safe, female-only environment tonight. Ladies are encouraged to attend and interact with Shepparton Mayor, Councillor Seema Abdullah at the Cafe. This will take place at the Foodstore, 53 Fryer Street, on Friday 7 February from 10:00am.

An initiative of the Ethnic Council (culturally connected communities) and City of Greater Shepparton, the Friendship Cafe will provide a space for young women from different cultural backgrounds to have a cup of tea and share friendly conversation with Mayor Seema Abdullah.

Afghan, African and Iraqi women aged between 13 and 25 are encouraged to attend the event, where they will hear inspiring stories and practical information from Shepparton Mayor Cr Seema Abdullah.

Ethnic Council project coordinator Aleena Qazikhil said the meetings would encourage young women to participate in community activities that would foster interpersonal and community connectedness and a sense of cultural identity.

“It is important for young women to meet community leaders and be inspired to make effort to achieve strong participation in the community, Ms Qazikhil said.”

The aim of the cafes, which will be held throughout the year, will encourage young women to participate in community activities to promote positive relationships, and long-term, to promote a positive cultural identity, feel connected to loved ones and community, and feel confident and positive about the future.

Ms Qazikhil said the settlement process often took several years to resolve, and long after the government support had ended, many individuals often had to work through the trauma experienced before, during and after leaving their home countries.

Guest Speaker at the event will be Shepparton Mayor Cr. Seema Abdullah.


Cr. Seema Abdullah
Master of Information Systems (MSc. Analysis, Design and Management of Information Systems)
Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Bachelor of Science
Certified Project Management Professional,
Project Management Institute (PMI, USA)

I grew up in Pakistan and migrated to Australia in 2004.

I am a PMI (Project Management Institute) certified Project Management Professional. My qualifications include a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Science in Information Systems, from London School of Economics. I moved to Shepparton in 2009 with my husband and two children due to my husband’s work commitments.

As a councillor, I aim to bring my passion for community combined with the skill-set and competence to provide team leadership and deliver positive outcomes.

My interests include reading, gardening, cooking, listening to music and spending time with family and my large circle of friends.

While on Council, one of my goals is to provide strong leadership for the promotion of the positive aspects of our region and towns within Greater Shepparton. I would like to be a strong advocate for everything that is needed to enhance the liveability and attractiveness of our towns for residents and tourists.

There are a number of things that are great about our region. We have a strong sense of community, multicultural mix, diversity, openness and acceptance within the community, a beautiful lake, river, river walks, trees, open spaces, sporting facilities and relaxed pace of life within two hours of Melbourne. 

The Friendship Cafe will take place at the Foodstore, 53 Fryer Street, on Friday 7 February from 10:00am.

For more information, phone the Shepparton Ethnic Council on 5830 2395 or contact Aleena on 0469 244 451


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