In Brief

Networking nightWe hosted our first networking night at the MCWH office in Collingwood on the 25th May and it was a great success!
Read more about the knowledge we shared and what you can expect next time!

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Delegate visitOn April 7th, Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health  warmly welcomed 19 Australian and international delegates into our Collingwood office for a field visit during the World Congress on Public Health.

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Netfa forum 2017The third NETFA forum Foundations for Change was held in Melbourne on the 24th March.Over 70 people attended to
discuss women’s rights, health and prevention of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C).

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Keeping busy

Health Education Program (HEP)

MCWH Multilingual Health Education Programs have been delivering important health information to women from immigrant and refugee backgrounds since 1978. Programs are conducted in industry and community settings by highly trained and qualified Bilingual Health Educators, from an immigrant or refugee background. These programs are uniquely successful because health information is provided in:

  • the preferred language of the women attending the program;
  • location and at times that are most convenient for women; and
  • ways which respect women’s experiences and knowledge and understand their cultural context.

This woman-to-woman approach is our peer education model, and is based on the belief that sharing health information and experiences is the best way to increase women’s health knowledge and wellbeing.

A highlight  this year has been working with Nestle to bring health education into places of work, and with AMES Australia and Melbourne Polytechnic to conduct sessions in places where women learn. Find out more about our Health Education Programs.

Grant updates

We are so pleased to announce that we have recently been successful in our funding application to the Victorian Government to deliver a violence prevention project in partnership with Southern Cross Care Victoria. We look forward to commencing the project on July 1st, 2017.

Board news

We warmly welcome two new board members: Catherine Ross and Tamara Kwarteng. Catherine comes from a philanthropic background and is passionate about grassroots community and generosity. A fundraiser for over 15 years, she studied International Politics and Development at the University of Melbourne (2012) and is now proudly Fundraising Manager for The Reach Foundation. Joining the MCWH Board in May 2017, Catherine is focused on sustainability and creating awareness for the valuable programs and community created for women by women.

Tamara comes to MCWH with an extensive background in public health, having had experience overseeing and leading numerous HIV & AIDS programs in Australia, Asia, the Pacific and Africa. Since January 2010, Dr Kwarteng has been an independent consultant providing technical advice in public health program design, monitoring, and evaluation.We warmly welcome her experience in organisational capacity-building, applied research, policy analysis and development, and training and education programs.

Around the office



We farewell our National Training Officer, Maria Hach. Maria joined MCWH in 2011 as a Health Promotion and Project Officer before beginning her training role in 2012. During her time at MCWH, Maria developed and implemented the nationally accredited Bilingual Health Education Program. She was also responsible for various projects, including the Common Threads Sexual and Reproductive Health Research Report and Best Practice Guide  and Culturally Responsive Palliative Care Community Education Project. Maria leaves us for a good reason – she is completing a PhD thesis in Cultural and Gender Studies, which explores inter-generational trauma and affectivity of historical violence among Cambodian-Australian women. All the best Maria!


We also farewell Zubaidah Shaburdin, our NETFA Project Officer. NETFA achieved many milestones in its three year period, not least of which were the annual NETFA forums. Read more about the highlights of the 2017 forum in the link above. You can also access an array of resources in English and many other languages, plus the National Education Toolkit on the NETFA website. 

Rosi Wedding_small

We warmly congratulate our Project Officer Rosi Aryal-Lees, for her recent Nepali-Australian nuptials to now husband Steven Lees. As per Nepali tradition, a priest guided the couple through the ritual steps of worshipping Ganesh and the nine planets, exchanging rings, repeating seven sacred vows and sharing a short peace meditation with guests. A delight to witness for the 150 guests who had travelled from all over the country and the world to celebrate this truly memorable and special day.

MCWH Inaugural Networking Night

We held our inaugural Multicultural Women’s Network meetup on 25th May.  It was great opportunity to meet with other women from immigrant and refugee backgrounds who are engaged with, or working in the multicultural women’s space.  The afternoon allowed us to socialise, share research, knowledge, and information about each other’s work across different areas.  Another networking event is in the pipeline, and we hope to see both returning and new faces.

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