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Award for Exellence in Languages and Culture

This award is provided by the Minister for Education and Child Development and administered by the Australia Day Council of South Australia.

The award is for people under 24 years who demonstrate:

  • commitment to advocacy for a multicultural Australia
  • a high degree of competence in more than one language and culture
  • outstanding qualities including leadership
  • the ability to operate across cultures.

2016 award winner

Qasem Bahmanzadah is the winner of the 2016 Award for Excellence in Language and Culture.

Qasem came to Australia as a refugee from Afghanistan with no possessions and no grasp of English. Since then Qasem has shown he’s a dedicated student, and given back to help others who have experienced similar hardship.

At just 19 years of age, Qasem has completed his final year of a Bachelor of Aviation. He continues to be an ambassador for the Australian Refugee Association and has spoken in forums to raise awareness of the challenges faced by refugees.

He told Salisbury Aware magazine “I believe language and culture are the two biggest barriers that often make it hard for people to settle in.”

More of Qasem's story can be found in the March 2016 edition of Salisbury Aware.


MELC Secretariat

Phone: 8226 1191
Email: decdmec [at] sa.gov.au