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Spreading the Love in Newcastle

July 8, 2012 by

I have a sign above my door that reads “We cannot all do great things, but we can all do small things with great Love”. MyLifeInOz exists to inspire a culture of understanding across the multicultural landscape of Australia and so when I  came across the blog of Matt Darvas I was struck again that it really is from small seeds that great oaks grow, in human terms it is awesome to see what the small seed planted in great love grows into.

So this story as a little sales pitch: Something exciting is happening in Newcastle on the Central Coast!

Matt and Brittany Darvas (two people with the aim of living selflessly and advocating on behalf of the exploited) knew that they  wanted to create a place of community and warmth (as opposed to a detention centre setting) for asylum seekers awaiting responses to their applications to reside in Australia. A place where they could share their lives with others and in turn experience the joy that comes from multiple stories mixed together.

They came across an old Convent for rent in Carrington and considered how  it could be divided into three family quarters, (kind of), enough for themselves and two other families. They saw the large dining room and communal areas and dreamt of the conversations and meals that could be shared, noticed the adjoining halls and thought of the community programs that could be facilitated and stood in the open garden courtyard out the back and thought about what they might grow there altogether.

With the understanding that asylum seekers and refugees have been made homeless, and often hopeless, by violence, persecution and upheaval, in the process uprooted and disconnected from their families, friends and culture, Matt and Brittany want to create a warm welcome into a community where these families can experience acceptance and affirmation. ( A campaign by the UNHCR is sharing the message that ‘No one chooses to be a refugee’).

The dream has become a reality! The vision:

To create a community where asylum seekers and refugees are empowered to reach their potential, whilst demonstrating a positive public example of how we can welcome them as individuals and families into our communities and homes.

“We would be foolish to attempt this on our own and that is why we invite you to be a part of our community. For those who can make it we invite you to come and work alongside us in the house, volunteering your time to assist with the various needs that will arise or even just coming around to share in a meal. For those who can’t ‘be there’ we ask for your encouragement, support and prayers as we seek together to change the conversation on asylum seekers and refugees in our communities and nation.” Matt Darvas

Those we call “poor” don’t need our pity and they don’t need our dreams; they’ve got their own. Instead, we all need to carry the responsibility to ensure every individual in our world, especially every child, has the opportunity to reach their God-given potential. Matt Darvas

To Contact the Darvas’ please refer to the link to Matt Darvas blog at the top of the story.

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