The past year has been filled with challenges for all SCONSW member organisations. We all swiftly had to make changes triggered by the global COVID19 pandemic. It has impacted the whole society and with international and national borders closing, constantly changing restrictions on group gatherings and lockdown rules it has made it hard for us to organise the usual traditional gatherings and events. The challenges have also brought opportunities, we had to re-think, be creative and develop new ways of meeting and supporting our community and our respective members. It has been inspiring to see such an abundance of positive initiatives and new ways of support delivered by our member organisations.
Well done to all organisations making up SCONSW for the success and support delivered throughout the year.
SCONSW member organisations:
- The Swedish School in Sydney
- The Swedish Church in Sydney
- The Swedish Club
- SiS – Swedish Women in Sydney
- SWEA SAC (Sydney, Adelaide & Canberra)
- SMiSK – Svenska Män i Sydney Klubben
SCONSW interest organisations:
- Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce (SACC)
- Embassy of Sweden
- Honorary Consulate General Sydney, NSW
The SCONSW plays an important role as the umbrella organisation for the above organisations, creating a platform to coordinate and cooperate in activities and events. During the past year, due to COVID19, we have been unable to engage in larger gatherings and therefore a few joint events have been postponed or cancelled, such as the 250 year’s celebration since Daniel Solander, onboard the Endeavour, arrived on the shores of Australia. We were also approached by Fika Swedish Kitchen in Manly to take part in a joint Lucia & Christmas Market Event in Manly in December 2020 which was cancelled due to COVID restrictions and high risk. In the light of this, the SCONSW did however promote the Swedish Church in Sydney’s positive initiative with a very successful online Christmas Market.
The SCONSW is responsible for the administration of the Swedes in Sydney website www.swedesinsydney.org, where all member and interest organisations are presented and have the opportunity to share information about their organisations, publish articles and inform about upcoming events in the joint calendar.
The website gives an important overview of organisations active in NSW for Swedes living in NSW and also for Swedes who are planning to move to NSW. We encourage all organisations to share information and blogs posts on the website as well as on the SCONSW Facebook page, which had a 50% increase of followers during the last year. Fantastic news, as there are so many social media platforms and several Swedish community pages to follow.
The event calendar postings have been very active, and it is great to see how many creative initiatives to meet, whether it is in person or online, our member organisations delivered. The joint events calendar is a great resource for the community, so keep up the good work and keep the community informed. We also welcome individual members of the Swedish Community to contribute with any Swedish related events for the calendar or articles for the blog.
During the year the SCONSW was also involved in promoting member organisations to nominate distinguished Swedish members to be listed on the Welcome Wall at the National Maritime Museum in Sydney. The Welcome Wall was in March 2021 declared as Australia’s National Monument to Migration and is one of the most important and visible tributes to Australia’s migration heritage recognising the people behind the migration stories. Over 30,000 names appear on the 84 bronze panels that are joined together and run down the northern promenade of the museum, facing Pyrmont Bay. In early 2021 two more well deserved distinguished members of the Swedish community in Australia were added, Birgitta Sharpe, nominated by the Swedish Church in Sydney and Miss Maud Edmiston nominated by the Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce.
Big congratulations to both Birgitta Sharpe and Miss Maud from SCONSW!
A huge thank you to all members and representatives on the Council for their dedication, support and invested time throughout this challenging year. Our active organisations, joint cooperation and efforts are of great value for the Swedish community and maybe now more than ever.
Camilla Jennings, President SCONSW
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
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- Swedish Australian Innovation Technology and Design Summit 28-29 September at the University of Technology Sydney
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