ARAN Conference 2018

The Fight for Refugee Rights

Australian Refugee Action Network
Second National Conference

Melbourne, Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 July, 2018

Report from ARAN National Committee June 2018

2018 ARAN Conference Report

Presentations from ARAN Conference 2018

  1. Attracting Media to your actions – Wes Cusworth
  2. CASPA – Catholic Alliance for People Seeking Asylum – Glenn Jessop
  3. Creative Activism Workshop – Nicola Paris, CounterAct
  4. Establishing and Building Activist Groups – Jan Govett, RAR
  5. Lobbying & letter writing workshop – Linda Cusworth
  6. Meeting with MPs – Linda Cusworth
  7. Planning for Palm Sunday Walk – Kerry Phillips
  8. Social Media Digital Activists – Mums4Refugees
  9. Tips for Writing Letters to Newspapers -Linda Cusworth
  10. Tips for Writing to Politicians -Linda Cusworth
  11. Tools for the Campaign Planning Toolkit – Samuel Dariol

Meet the 2018-19 ARAN Committee

2018 ARAN Committee 1

Angelica Panopoulos (Refugee Action Collective Victoria – RAC Vic)
Azlan Petra (Co-opted)
Christian Bashimbe (Co-opted)
Clare Forbes (Grandmothers Against Detention of Refugee Children – GADRC)
Elizabeth Lang (WA Collective)
Emmanuel Kondok (Community of South Sudanese and Other Marginalised Areas – CSSOMA)
Jan Govett (Rural Australians for Refugees – RAR)
Marie Hapke (Refugee Advocacy Network – RAN)
Meg Clark (Canberra Refugee Action Committee – Canberra RAC)
Peter Robson (Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network – DASSAN)
Rachel Silber (Melbourne Youth for Refugees)

Conference recap from CASPA (Catholic Alliance for People Seeking Asylum)

Carried by ARAN Conference 8 July 2018

Download the full program here as either double sided A4 or A5 folded version.

The AUSTRALIAN REFUGEE ACTION NETWORK conference was open to anyone interested in refugee activism and advocacy.

Conference dinner was a Tamil Feast

Opening Address: Julian Burnside – human rights and refugee advocate, and documentary maker (Border Politics) will talk about the effects on our society of adopting ideas that reject humanity and undermine democracy.

Panel Discussion: Political Context and Challenges for the Campaign for Refugee Rights: Dr John Minns (ANU) , Najeeba Wazefadost , advocate and former refugee, Emmanuel Kondok, NSW Community of South Sudanese and Other Marginalised Areas group (CSSOMA) and Southern Hope Community Organisation and former refugee, and Shen Narayanasamy, GetUp!’s Human Rights Campaign Director.

Panel Moderator: Corinne Grant, Human rights advocate, lawyer, media personality and comedian


The conference program will include opportunities to:

  • Reflect on the current context and political environment
  • Consider campaigning priorities and strategies
  • Sharing success stories
  • Share knowledge and skills
  • Networking discussions – faith communities, unions, students and LGBTI communities
  • Informal networking

Workshops with short presentations and sharing between participants:
Protests, actions & vigils – RAC Vic, Adelaide Vigil, and others
Lobbying politicians and letter writing – Linda Cusworth (CRAG)
Raising community awareness and changing attitudes – ASRC – Conversations for change;  Burhan Zangana (RCAN)
Creative activism and using social media – workshop lead by Counteract
Campaign planning – workshop lead by Sam Dariol, Refugee Council of Australia
Media strategies – Wes Cusworth , refugee advocate and former journalist
Sharing your story to influence others – workshop lead by Centre for Multicultural Youth, with Zaki Haidari
Establishing and building activist groups – presenters Jan Govett (RAR), Dulce Munoz (Mums for Refugees), Sophie Singh (Canberra RAC)

Discussion on the role of ARAN in strengthening the campaign for refugee rights

Election of ARAN Committee
The ARAN Committee is elected by delegates from the member groups – each member group is invited to nominate voting delegates and candidates for election to the Committee.

ARAN member groups were requested to:

  • Nominate two delegates to vote in the election to choose the ARAN Committee members for 2018-19. Delegates will need to be present at the Conference session on Sunday morning  (8 July)
  • Nominate one or more candidates to stand for election to the Committee (noting that the Committee only one representative from any member group may be elected).  Note:  Delegates may also be candidates.   Candidates will need to provide a brief statement about why they are standing for election to the ARAN Committee.  Ideally candidates will be present at the election session, but candidates may be elected in absentia.


Enquiries:   email

Read the report on the first national conference held in 2017 here