Women welcomed back to Friendship Café

Women welcomed back to Friendship Café Ethnic Council of Shepparton and District’s Friendship Café is back meeting in person after several successful Zoom sessions during lockdown — and they want more women to attend the sessions.

Organised by the Ethnic Council in partnership with Berry Street, the Friendship Café aims to bring culturally and linguistically diverse women who are new to the region together.

Event organiser Aleena Qazikhil said they were looking forward to welcoming more women to the sessions, but it was difficult for some to attend.

“It’s coming up to school holidays and cherry picking season,” she said.

“It’s really hard to get people to come.”

The latest session — about financial wellbeing — took place on Wednesday, November 17.

Hosted by Berry Street financial wellbeing co-ordinator Jenni Bowles, the finance-based ‘Money Minded’ session was aimed at helping those in vulnerable communities make the most out of their cash.

“Basically, helping them with understanding needs versus wants, and being able to budget a little better,” she said.

“Right through to talking about some banks and how to use online banking and things like that as well.”

The event is also an opportunity for the women to socialise and connect with their community, something Ms Qazikhil wants to encourage.

Bibisherin Khahsar was one of the attendees at the event, and said the Friendship Café was a chance to meet others.

“It’s a good opportunity to get out of the house and socialise,” she said.

Ethnic Council’s strategic engagement co-ordinator Sam Atukorala agreed the regular sessions helped those newly arrived to Shepparton to meet.

“Social isolation is a significant concern for new and emerging communities, especially women,” he said.

For more information about the Friendship Café, call Aleena Qazikhil on 0469 244 451.


Women welcomed back to Friendship Café
Women welcomed back to Friendship Café


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