Premier's Award for Community Harmony

The Premier’s Award for Community Harmony is one of 10 categories in Victoria’s Multicultural Awards for Excellence. Victoria is one of the most multicultural regions in the world, so initiatives which break down stereotypes and promote cross-cultural understanding are vital for community harmony. This award recognises outstanding  individuals and organisations that have developed intercultural and/or interfaith programs to highlight our shared values and common humanity.

Selection Criteria

  • Undertakes initiatives utilising multiple organisations, individuals or groups to increase understanding and acceptance between cultural and/or religious groups
  • Leads initiatives that promote tolerance of other cultures and religions
  • Initiates community activities involving more than one cultural or religious group working together on a community project that demonstrates or promotes harmony

Eligibility

  • Individuals, organisations, businesses and local governments based or operating in Victoria
  • Self-nominations are not accepted

Nominations in all categories may also be considered for the Emerging Leadership in Multiculturalism Award and the Award for Meritorious Service to the Community.

2018 recipient

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Tara Rajkumar OAM

Tara Rajkumar OAM is an artistic director, choreographer, teacher and performer of Indian classical dance. Raised in New Delhi, Mrs Rajkumar moved to the UK where she founded the National Academy of Indian Dance before settling in Australia in 1983. In recent years she has curated a number of projects and performances for the Light in Winter Festival at Federation Square. As well as the South Asian cultural performances she has led, Mrs Rajkumar has also worked with Aboriginal communities to develop a Welcome to Country around the festival’s sacred Leempeeyt Weeyn Campfire. Mrs Rajkumar has fostered cross-cultural awareness through hundreds of lectures, workshops and performances at schools and community events throughout metropolitan and regional Australia. In one such project she worked with primary school students to create a reinterpretation of J R R Tolkien’s The Hobbit through Indian classical dance, while in another the students put on an English-language performance of the Indian epic Ramayana. Mrs Rajkumar has also helped children of Indian origin who have been adopted by Australian parents to stay connected to their heritage through dance.

Previous winners

Read our interview with the 2016 Premier’s Award for Community Harmony winners, John Gandel AO and Pauline Gandel.