Harman Foundation organised annual fundraiser ‘Light and Hope’ dinner
Harman Foundation hosted its 8th annual fundraising dinner ‘Light and Hope’ on February 28, 2021 at Bowman Hall, Blacktown. It was an insightful evening organised to support women and children affected by family and domestic violence.
The dinner night which raised over $40,000 including an auction to support women’s shelter nicknamed ‘HER House’ (Harman Foundation Empowerment & Refuge House). It provides transitional housing for women and children affected by domestic violence.
Harman foundation has always been ardent when it comes to community services. Since its inception in 2013, Harman Foundation has been supporting individuals, families and community during extreme hardships including grief, loss, homelessness, domestic and family violence etc.
The foundation provides family support services, chaplaincy services and is a ray of hope for all those women and children who are facing domestic violence.
With over 250 volunteers, Harman foundation has housed 40 women and 16 children till date. It has assisted 300 families in 2019-2020 alone, 7000 calls were made through helpline and direct contact. Harman Foundation has provided chaplaincy service to 400 patients and prisoners.
The function was attended by a number of parliamentarians including Federal MP Michelle Rolland from Greenway, State MP Kevin Conolly representing Riverstone, Tony Bleasdale –Mayor from Blacktown City council including many councillors.
The amazing team from Blacktown Workers Club including their CEO Morgan Stewart, Two Vice Presidents, their Directors and managers along with their family members attended the event and supported the foundation in future times in a big way predominantly in Family & Domestic Violence service stream of Harman Foundation.
The event started with Australian National Anthem which was followed by a candle lighting ceremony by the dignitaries.
A Punjabi drama video ‘Rich Cultures Should have Rich Relationship’- a community led Domestic Violence (DV) prevention partnership between Multicultural Health Services and Harman Foundation was played for the audience. This project was aimed to stimulate discussions to challenge community attitude towards family violence.
The main objective of Harman Foundation is to develop culturally appropriate resources that are supportable in their efforts to prevent DV.
Different performances by dance groups including, ‘Proud Punjabana’, “Rooh Punjab Di” and Kathak by Tanima Banerjee from Bandana Cultural School kept the audience entertained through the event.
Maninder Singh, Chairman of Harman Foundation while addressing the audience said, “Financial year 2019-2020 was challenging yet a successful year for Harman Foundation.”
“The primary objective have always been to ensure that no one falls to the cracks To sustain our ongoing projects and for future projects, we are focusing on partnerships, collaborations and searching grants/donations/sponsorships,” added Maninder Singh.
He thanked all the volunteers and supporters for their tireless efforts and thanked the sponsors for their time and financial support.
Michelle Rowland, Federal MP for Greenway appreciated the efforts of Harman Foundation.
Pointing towards the transparency in their accounts, Michelle Rowland applauded the initiatives taken by the foundation and said that it is very easy organisation when it comes to support them.
Kevin Conolly, Member of legislative Assembly representing Riverstone said, “Harman Foundation is doing a remarkable job. They are providing a range of services to the local community. He added that this organisation has a unique advantage as they understand the local sub -continental community better than many other organisations and so are able to respond to the issues they know people are experiencing, in a way that is sensitive to the background of the people involved. They provide really niche valuable services in the community to vulnerable women.”
Kevin added, “Domestic Violence is a challenge in every country and every culture. In the past it was not much talked about, so it is hard to say about the trends all over the world, but certainly we can say that in past it was happening behind the doors and not much talked about. Now people have the courage to come forward and talk about it, which is a good thing.”
Harinder Kaur, CEO and co-founder of Harman Foundation said, “Harman foundation has been always upfront to help the individuals and families stuck in vulnerable circumstances. We have grown into a big family with 250 volunteers who have their own expertise and offering different services to the community.”
“Harman foundation helps people who are in extremely tragic circumstances or vulnerable situations especially due to family and Domestic Violence (DV). We equally support both men and women,” said Harinder Kaur.
“As we are a part of the local sub-continental community, we have a better understanding of the cultural sensitivity and support the people according to that,” she added.
“1 in 4 women experience domestic and family violence and one women is killed every 9 days. Shockingly, 17 adults are hospitalised everyday due to domestic and family violence. Harman Foundation receives 200 plus calls related to domestic violence every month, so this issue needs to be addresses. In May 2020, Kamaljeet Sidhu was murdered, so we want to spread awareness about domestic violence and curb this menace,” said Harinder.
“We as an organisation believe in filling gaps. We are not doing the same work as other organisation are doing but trying to fill in the gaps left behind. We have lots of collaborations and we are open for any proposals and discussions as well.”
“Our Foundation is totally based on donations and I feel proud that with each passing year we are growing stronger and trying to serve more people”
Harman Foundation thanked all its partners including Vantage Luxe Homes, Waratah Estate Agents, First National Real Estate, Australian Health and Science Institute (Blacktown), Belmont Homez, A Royaal Event, Kaur’s Legal, Har Guru Pty Ltd, Sandhu Lawyers, Star Car Wash Blacktown, Kaur Collection, Desire Creations, Xclusive Homes, Uneek Conveyancing, charity supporters GOPIO, United Sikhs, SAAYA Touching Lives and Turbans4australia