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Photos by Deshani Berhardt (Wild Hardt).


Sound design and editing by POOKIE.

“My name is Awatif Taha. Home is Sudan and for the past 20 years, Australia.

I like Australia for its humanity, rights, education, health and job opportunities. I work and volunteer my time with my community across different fields, but especially with women and kids. I’m involved in running a homework club and working with the Multicultural Sudanese Centre where we have provided women with certified training in commercial cooking.

A big project I’m involved in at the moment is Mum’s Kitchen which developed through co-design with Moonee Valley City Council. Mum’s Kitchen is for women from different African backgrounds to build skills and confidence for them to access employment opportunities in aged care, child care and hospitality and to create their own business which might also support employment of other women in the community.

During the hard lockdown I was so busy working with different organisations and DHHS, door knocking to get information to people, ask them what they needed and link them to services to make sure their needs were met. I especially helped with new arrivals and old women who needed extra support. I also did some media interviews on radio about our situation and I wrote an article that was published in The Guardian.

For the Shelter 2 project I have brought together 7 other women from different African backgrounds who live in the high-rises, to share our recipes and eat together and it’s been amazing. For us it’s not only about sharing our food but also about us having confidence and affirming our value in the community.”

Awatif Taha has shared her story as part of the Flemington Sisters project for Shelter 2.

Shelter 2 is proudly supported by VicHealth, Creative Victoria, City of Melbourne and Australia Council for the Arts.