By: Alsu Kurlow
Human Appeal Australia hosted its 12th Annual Year 12 Muslim Achievement Awards in Perth, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne over the previous two weekends. Year 12 students who achieved an ATAR score or equivalent of 90% or more in 2018 were invited to register for the awards. Various respected members of the community, politicians, school principals, businesses and family members attended ceremonies in the five cities. An incredible two hundred and fifty-seven students were honoured for their hard work and awarded certificates of recognition and valuable gifts. (Article continues after gallery below.)
The five separate ceremonies started off in Perth on Friday 8th March with the city hosting the awards for the second time. Amazingly, twenty-eight students were awarded on the night with Shady Fouda and Sr. Fatima Payman co-MCing the proceedings. Human Appeal Australia’s Director of Projects Issam Chaouk welcomed guests. The Hon. Lisa O’Malley MLA Member for Bicton, WA and representative of the Minister for Education and Training spoke on the night congratulating students on their magnificent achievements. Other speakers included Abdullah Khan, Executive Principal of the Australian Islamic College (AIC); The Hon. Martin Pritchard MLC; Pierre Yang MLC, Sheikh Wael Ibrahim; Dr Tony Buti MLA; Dr Rateb Jneid; The Hon David Honey MLA; Dr Naser Elziadat; Syed Mustafa Nabi, Leadership Umrah Tour 2019 participant and Azmain Talukder, award recipient. The girls from AIC Primary school performed a nasheed song and stole the hearts of the audience. Sameh Elgawady, the Perth Branch Manager, spoke about Human Appeal’s office in Perth and many projects to follow, he also thanked the guests for coming.
Brisbane was next on Saturday 9th March honouring nine students. Human Appeal’s Abdnaser Ali Orphan Sponsorship and Community Development Manager welcomed guests and spoke of the importance of recognising both outstanding effort as well as achievement. The keynote speakers were Farouk Adam, president of Muslim Business Council, Mohammed Ally, CEO of Australian International Islamic College, Dr Ray Barrett, the principle of Islamic College of Brisbane and Habib Jamal, newly elected president of Islamic Council of Queensland. Mr Habib Jamal addressed the Award Winners as the Future Muslim leader and delivered beautiful advice. Dr Ray Barrett amused the crowd with the TEN leadership qualities displayed by our prophet Muhammad SA. The MC of the night was Dr Mustafa Ally from Crescent Community News, who ensured that the program ran smoothly. He kept the crowd engaged and laughing with his vibrant and jolly comments. Lastly, Imam Akram Buksh, Manager of Human Appeal QLD office, thanked all for joining and making it a success. The event recognised their hard work and dedication and acknowledged the great support of their parents.
On Sunday 10th of March, the ceremony in Sydney awarded the largest number of students with a total of one-hundred and twenty-two recognised. The ceremony was opened with the heart-warming recitation of the Quran by Sheikh Khaled Zraykah and co-MC’d by Omar Al-Jamal and Raghda Assoum. Students were invited with their parents to join various respected members of the community, school principals, politicians and businesses to attend the ceremony which was held in The Highline Venue in Bankstown. During the night they were honoured for their hard work and awarded certificates of recognition and several valuable gifts. Human Appeal Australia’s Director, Bashar Al-Jamal welcomed guests then various speeches were given by The Hon. Tony Burke, Federal Member for Watson; Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohammed, the Grand Mufti of Australia; City of Canterbury Bankstown Mayor Khal Asfour; Jihad Dib, MP; Hala Ramadan, Principal of Belmore Boys High School and Hajj Mohamed El-Mouelhy, Director of Halal Certification Authority. Overall the night was filled with a warm atmosphere of celebration and joy.
In Adelaide, thirteen students were awarded on Saturday 16th March. Branch Manager of Human Appeal’s Adelaide office, Ali Kadir welcomed guests and highlighted the organisation’s goal of encouraging and motivating outstanding achievement which would benefit the country. The Hon. David Pisoni, MP congratulated the students for their great efforts. Other speakers included Senator Rex Patrick; Houssam Abiad, Deputy Mayor of Adelaide City Council; The Hon. Zoe Bettison, MP; Elvir Mustafic, Leadership Umrah Tour 2018 participant and Mohammed El-Sayid, a religious leader. The beautiful night was also attended by Carolyn Power, MP; Dr Susan Close, MP and The Hon. Tony Piccolo, MP.
In Melbourne, on Sunday 17th March, eighty-five students were awarded. Sheikh Rabih Baytie, Human Appeal’s Melbourne Branch Manager welcomed guests and acknowledged the important role that parents and guardians played in the achievements of their children. Other speakers included Ms Cindy McLeish, MP; Bachar Houli, AFL football player; Ms Bronwyn Halfpenny, MP; Dr Samantha Ratnam, MLC; Cr Natalie Abboud, Mayor of Moreland; Cr Mark Riley, Deputy Mayor of Moreland; Prof Salman Qureshi and Dr Abdel Kareem Halabi. The MC Nour Abouzeid thanked the audience for their attendance.
Overall, the five ceremonies held in Perth, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne, were a fantastic opportunity for parents and communities to celebrate with happiness the proud achievements of these amazing 257 individuals.
“Your future contributions to the wider society as professionals, humanitarians, and thought leaders will benefit the wider public and should encourage a cultural shift away from perceptions of mistrust and hate toward a greater level of respect, understanding and appreciation of Muslim Australian communities. A special vote of thanks goes to the generous businesses and organisations that sponsored the 12th Annual Year 12 Muslim Achievement Awards. Human Appeal Australia congratulates all the Year 12 students of 2018 for their success and wishing them all the best in future” said Bashar Al-Jamal, Human Appeal Australia director
Human Appeal Australia, Always with you on the road to goodness.