Tag Archives: mixed race

Working it out

Working it Out: Stories from African-Australian Relationships is a new resource for people in mixed African-Australian relationships based on interviews with fifteen people about their personal experiences. The booklet includes stories, links and suggestions on a range of issues such as parenting, finances, problem solving and cultural difference.

The resource was funded by a grant from University of Western Sydney and produced by AAN Committee members Annie Stopford, Jill Sergeant and Cornel Robinson. A limited number of print copies are available or you can download it here. Working it Out was launched at the AAN fundraising dinner on Friday 27 November.

August picnic in Merryands

The next AAN picnic will be

1.00pm – 4.00pm

Saturday 8 August

at Central Gardens Reserve Merrylands

Cnr Merrylands Rd & Cumberland Highway.
View Map 

Come along and meet new people and families of mixed backgrounds. Bring some food to share, and enjoy good company. The children will enjoy exploring the animal exhibits in the park and there is plenty of room for bike riding or ball games.

If it is raining we will meet at a Cafe close by. Please contact Suzanne on 0417 777 131 for more details. Hope to see you there!

Celebrating the first Black president of the USA

barack_obamaA.A.N. celebrates the election of the first black American president. We want to pay tribute not only to Barack Obama’s extraordinary spirit and vision, but also to his mother and grandmother, and to his whole extended multicultural and multiracial family.

In the aftermath of Obama’s historic election, we received an email from Endashaw Tesema, an African leader in Australia, honouring all those women who have had the courage and determination to build intercultural and racial relationships and families, despite enormous obstacles and opposition at times. With his permission, we include an extract from his email here:

“Many would rather I did not make this comment but following Milton who once said “a grateful mind owes not but still pays” I wish to pay at this moment in history, not later.

It is women like you who have followed their hearts, not the expectations of others, in more cases than not at great personal price, that helped in the speedy arrival of a moment in history today.

Thank you for meeting us half way to help us cross the bridge, to propel the world toward transition at a more accelerated speed than would have been otherwise.

Without the brave women like you having met us half way, America would have taken longer to make history; many millions of people would have passed away without witnessing this change; many millions of people whould have simply continued to hang on to Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” with no hope of realising this dream in their lifetime. The reason is those who granted the making of this history would have been less prepared to cause the realisation of this dream. Together, the women like you and us have shaped the history that has just unfolded.”

A.A.N really appreciates this recognition, and also acknowledge all the men who also play such a critical role in creating and sustaining intercultural and racial families.

Come to our October picnic

Bring your family and hang out with us at the next AAN Sausage Sizzle.

Saturday 25 October, 1.00pm – 5.00pm.

Johnson Park, Constitution Rd, Dulwich Hill

We will provide a sausage sizzle but you are welcome to bring other food for the BBQ and/or salads etc. to share.

Johnson Park has enclosed play equipment, a basketball court, and plenty of space for bikes and kicking a ball around.

There’s plenty of parking or it’s a short walk from the 425, 426, 428 & 445 Bus routes (get off near Dulwich Hill shops).

If it’s raining the picnic will be cancelled. Call Suzanne on 0417 777 131 if the weather is uncertain.

Survey: What do you think?

We’ve just taken a look at the early results from our survey. AAN set up the survey late last year because we wanted to get a better idea of how many people are in mixed families & couples and what kinds of issues are important to them.

So far, 32 people have filled out the survey. We know that’s just the tip of the iceberg – so if you haven’t filled it out, please do it now, so that we can plan activities for the year ahead that will truly reflect what’s important to you. Also, the more data we have about our constituency, the more likely we are to get funding for those activities.

The survey results so far indicate that most people are interested in seminars on political and cultural issues (95% answered “please do it” or “fairly interested”) and political lobbying and advocacy (94.8%). Also high on people’s list were seminars on cross cultural relationships (88.2%) and conferences (83.3%). There was a fairly strong interest in picnics (78.9%) and support goups (72.2%), and the least interest in parties (60% – hey, come on!?) and activities for teens (47%).

Of the 32 people who answered the survey, there were 23 women and 9 men. 13 people described themeselves as anglo-Australian, 6 as African, one New Zealander and the rest described themselves as Australian. African respondents were from Kenya, Sudan, Nigeria and South Africa. Non African respondents described their partners as being Tanzanian, Ghanaian, Zimbabwean, Central African, West African and Tswana. 16 different languages were spoken in mixed households.

21 people were parents of a total of 37 children, including 26 who were of mixed heritage. The children ranged in age from young adults to infants.

The issues people identifed as most important to them were racism, particularly as it affected their children; the need for connection to African communities & culture; employment/accreditation of African qualifications; and financial issues. A couple of respondents felt there were no issues that affected them specifically as mixed families/couples that were different to other families.

We do have a lot more data than we’re releasing here – this is just a taste. A full report will be published after we’ve got more results.

Does this sound like you and your family? Are these the issues you care about? Get your voice heard, fill out the survey today.

Mothering Children of African Descent

AAN Co-convenor Annie Stopford, Ph.D., has recently had an article published in the Journal of Pan-African Studies. Her article, Mothering Children of African Descent: Hopes, Fears, and Strategies of White Birth Mothers, features in the latest edition of the journal, which has the theme “Africana Mothering”. Annie based her article on interviews with white mums in Sydney. Congratulations Annie!