Everyone Belongs – celebrating Harmony Week 2021

Everyone Belongs with CVA

We’re proud of our work with people just like yourself. Through our almost 40 year history, we have had the privilege of working in almost every corner of Australia, working with a wonderful diversity of people – from First Nations to people descended from early European settlement and from international tourists taking their first steps in Australia to new migrants who are just finding their way here. Today we celebrate you all.

We welcome the opportunity to work with anyone – we strive towards a reality where CVA can be a place where everyone belongs.

That is also the theme of Harmony Week 2021.

Volunteers celebrating Harmony Week in Tasmania

Harmony in Tasmania

To coincide with Harmony Week (March 15th to 21st), CVA’s Revive Campaign Director, Renae Riviere took a group of 15 students participating in the Adult Migrant English Program at TAFE to the Glenorchy Art and Sculpture Park (GASP) to do an ocean litter clean-up event as part of our partnership with the John T Reid Charitable Trust.

The students cleaned about 300m of shoreline, collecting 31kg of rubbish – mostly plastic bottles, cans, balls and a plastic leg!

This leg was really jammed in between some rocks and a student struggled for about 5 minutes to get it out. As this was going on, we discussed how strange it was that things can easily get into places, but it can be hard to get them back out again. One student told Renae said that it reminded her of a time back in her home country when she was ten and the bomb siren went off – she was so scared that she leapt under the sofa and got stuck, and her family had to lift the sofa off her to get her out.

“It was just casual conversation, but it really highlighted to me just how different our lives had been, even though we are the same age. These opportunities to talk are so important to understand one another better. I’m glad that she feels safe and welcome in our community here in Hobart”

Many students in this class have been participating in CVA projects since 2017 and they love helping on environmental projects in their local community, but what they enjoy most is getting out and meeting new people and practising their English.

“I think it’s always good when we do something and we can talk together and meet different communities. Yes, we can talk with different people, not just my classmates… when we study English, we only talk with my classmates and teacher. And when we go outside, we can talk with more local people and different, different English accent. Always talking here, the teacher knows that maybe our English isn’t good, and they will always be talking slowly, but outside it’s faster.”

– CVA volunteer, Hobart


Harmony in Melbourne

The Conservation Volunteers Cross-Cultural Volunteering Program provides a unique opportunity for adult migrants and refugees to participate in environmental rehabilitation in Victoria. The program was launched on Harmony Day in 2019 and has seen over 100 volunteers engaged in weed control, water testing, rubbish collection and track maintenance at the iconic Organ Pipes National Park.

The program is supported by Melbourne Airport and this partnership continues to connect newly arrived migrants with a local ecosystem in their community.


What is Harmony Week?

It is a time to celebrate Australian multiculturalism, and the successful integration of migrants into our community.

Harmony Week is about inclusiveness, respect and belonging for all Australians, regardless of cultural or linguistic background, united by a set of core Australian values.

Find out more about Harmony Week here.

Get Involved

We’re here to make it easy to take action for nature across Australia, and we would love your help. Check out the ways that you can get involved in your local area.