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Newsletter for 27 June 2017 Rural Australians for Refugees Bellingen and Nambucca Districts

Next Market Stall - Bellingen Sat 15th July
Next Roadside Demo - Big Banana, Coffs Thursday June 29 2:30pm
Upcoming refugee events this week
Reply from the ASC
Quote of the week

Coffs Harbourside market report

In spite of the overcast skies, we had a good market in Coffs Harbour on Sunday, with a great team of enthusiastic supporters. Lots of interesting conversations,  a steady stream of support, numerous sales of “Boat People” T shirts and tea towels, generous donations for the Asylum Seekers Centre  and pages of signatures on our latest petition. It was a delight to meet a number of  senior students from local High schools who were happy to sign the petition. One student in particular, from Bishop Druitt’s school, was both knowledgeable and enthusiastic, speaking warmly about refugees, about her school’s commitment to human rights, and about how much she valued the presence of refugees in her class. These young people represent our hopes for a  future in which difference can be celebrated, rather than feared and demonised.
As a result of our fundraising at recent markets, we have donated $200 to the Asylum Seekers  Centre, making a total of $950 from our market stalls since making a commitment last August to raise $1000. Not far to go!
Our upcoming markets for the rest of the year are: 
15th July: Bellingen; 
5th August: Valla Beach; 
27th August: Coffs Harbour; 
16th September: Bellingen; 
7th October: Valla Beach; 
22nd October: Coffs Harbour; 
18th November: Bellingen; 
2nd December: Valla Beach.

Roadside demonstration: Big Banana, Coffs Harbour: Thursday 29th June: 2.30 pm to 4.00 pm

A reminder that our next roadside demonstration is this Thursday, 29th June, beside the Pacific Highway next to the Big Banana.  Please come and join us if you can, as a number of our core supporters are away on holiday at the moment. We have, as always, lots of banners and placards to share. A great opportunity to show your solidarity with asylum seekers and refugees.
Our upcoming demonstrations are: Thursday 13th July in Nambucca Heads, adjacent to the Plaza shopping centre; Thursday 27th July, opposite the Base hospital in Coffs Harbour; Thursday 10th August: Bellingen.

Upcoming refugee-related events

Wednesday 28th June.  A reminder that tomorrow evening, starting at 7.00 pm in Scotts Head Public School, there will be a screening of the film “Cast from a Storm”. A great opportunity to see a very informative and moving film, and the chance to engage in discussion about refugee issues.  Further details from Janet Granek at:, or just turn up for a 7.00 pm start. Anyone from Valla Beach or nearby who would like a lift can phone Mike on 6569  5419.
Friday 30th June. A reminder about the Freedom Feast which takes place this Friday from 6.00 pm until 8.30 pm at Coffs Harbour Central, on Harbour Drive. The event is located upstairs at Food at the Terrace. You are invited to bring a plate to share, and there will also be food from around the world for you to taste and enjoy. You will be able to relax, and to enjoy music and dance from diverse local and cultural groups. The event is FREE, and filling up fast. To book your free place, go to:, or call Andrew on: 6648 4846.

Reply from the Asylum Seekers Centre

Following our donation last week of $1000 to the ASC from our fundraising lunch and auction, we received a warm reply: “What a fantastic result from your fundraising lunch! Thank you very much to your RAR group for your continued support.” We know that ASC will put the money to good use.

Quote of the week

“We have hardened our hearts. I fear we have devalued the currency of mercy. Children have asked for bread and we gave them stones. So turn back, I beg you. For the children’s sake. For the sake of this nation’s spirit. Raise us back up to our best selves. Turn back while there’s still time”.
Tim  Winton, author.

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