November 27 - December 3, 2022: Issue 564

Our Youth page is for young people aged 13+ - if you are younger than this we have news for you in the Children's pageNews items and articles run at the top of this page. Information, local resources, events and local organisations, sports groups etc. are at the base of this page. All Previous pages for you are listed in Past Features

The Australian Magpie: Our Suburban Caroller

Although this wonderful suburban bird may be often taken for granted, it has a LOT going for it and is one of our most beautiful and musical suburban birds and also one of the few suburban birds that offers 'protection for other birds in a way as the yellow-rumped thornbill (Acanthiza chrysorrhoa), willie wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys), southern whiteface (Aphelocephala leucopsis), and (less commonly) noisy miner (Manorina melanocephala), often nest in the same tree as the magpie. 

A pair of magpies will mate for life and often return to the same tree year after year o use as a nesting place. Once the eggs hatch the young remain in the nest for about 4 weeks while being fed by the mum. During this time the nest is defended by the male. The family group will help protect and educate the young with the dad teaching them foraging skills. 

The young magpies, once they leave home, will move around together in a group called a 'tribe' although the collective word for a group of magpies is also listed as 'tidings'.

As one of Australia's most accomplished songbirds, the Australian magpie has an array of complex vocalisations. It is omnivorous, with the bulk of its varied diet made up of invertebrates (insects) although it will eat seed, tubers, walnuts and figs.

On the ground, the Australian magpie moves around by walking, and is the only member of the Artamidae to do so; woodswallows, butcherbirds and currawongs all tend to hop with legs parallel. The magpie has a short femur (thigh bone), and long lower leg below the knee, suited to walking rather than running, although birds can run in short bursts when hunting prey.

The Australian magpie was first described in the scientific literature by English ornithologist John Latham in 1801 as Coracias tibicen, the type collected in the Port Jackson region. Its specific epithet derived from the Latin tibicen "flute-player" or "piper" in reference to the bird's melodious call. An early recorded vernacular name is piping poller, written on a painting by Thomas Watling, one of a group known collectively as the Port Jackson Painter, sometime between 1788 and 1792. Other names used include piping crow-shrike, piping shrike, piper, maggie, flute-bird and organ-bird. The term bell-magpie was proposed to help distinguish it from the European magpie but failed to gain wide acceptance.

Port Jackson, consisting of the waters of Sydney Harbour, Middle Harbour, North Harbour and the Lane Cove and Parramatta Rivers, is the ria or natural harbour of Sydney.

Artamidae is a family of passerine birds found in Australia, the Indo-Pacific region, and Southern Asia. It includes 24 extant species in six genera and three subfamilies: Peltopsinae (with one genus, Peltops), Artaminae (with one genus containing the woodswallows) and Cracticinae (currawongs, butcherbirds and the Australian magpie). Artamids used to be monotypic, containing only the woodswallows, but it was expanded to include the family Cracticidae in 1994. 

The word 'Artamidae' means 'wood swallows'.

There are also a lot of old stories associated with this bird.

In the old languages of this island home, according the Noongar Dreaming of Western Australia, the sky was once so close to the ground that trees could not grow, people had to crawl and all the birds were forced to walk everywhere. Working together the birds managed to prop up the sky with sticks, but it threatened to break the sticks and collapse to earth again. The magpies, known for being clever, took a long stick in their beaks and pushed it up and up until the sky sprang into its proper place, revealing the sun and, with it, the first dawn.

The magpies' lovely carolling singing each morning is to remind everybody of their important role in creation. Their unique song is reflected in its Noongar name: "Coolbardie". Similarly, the mining town of Coolgardie means "magpie" in the local  Aboriginal dialect.

In Queensland the indigenous peoples of the Cloncurry district (N. Q.) have a strange legend concerning the moon. They believe that in the past, and before white men mixed with them, all indigenous peoples were turkeys. 

One of them happened to damage his foot very badly, and asked a female aboriginal, then a cockatoo parrot, if she knew where the nearest water could be found. She said, "There is no water here." He then asked a green parrot if he knew where the water was, and as his foot was becoming more painful he requested him to cut it open, but the green parrot said that he was unable to do this. He thereupon successively appealed to the crow (an aboriginal doctor), an eagle-hawk, and the moon (white-fellow doctor), to render him the necessary assistance, but they all said that they could not undertake the job. 

As a last chance he begged the earth-grub to give him relief. The grub promised to do his best, and he bit into the swollen flesh, sucked all the putrid matter out, and cured the patient. A large corroboree was then held, and galahs, storm-birds, white and black cockatoos, butcher-birds magpies, bowerbirds, opossums, porcupines and bandicoots, all took part. 

While the turkey and the earth-grub together with the cloud and skies shifted their position (for the last named until then had always remained on the surface of the ground) the whole party began singing, "there goes our brother up," and of course, both creatures stayed up there! But so that the people below should always remember what a good physician he had proved himself to be, the earth-grub sends a moon regularly every month to bear him in mind, for the moon is a brother of his and like him, bores his way out of the ground, rises up again on high, sinks once more, and then dies. This worm has plenty of brothers, and so he sends a different moon every month!

Others speak of the carolling song of the magpie, telling us; 

'the koolardi, or grey bell-magpie, is known in parts of the bush as the 'rain bird.' This does not appear to arise from any reputation it has made as a weather prophet, but from the fact that its notes sound like 'It's going to rain.' It is a frequent prediction of the koolardi, no matter what kind of weather it may be enjoying. By way of a change it sometimes announces that 'Two and two are four.' Its relative, the kurrawong, or pied bell-magpie, is more common. Its notes, flung out in a loud, ringing voice as it flies through the forest, sound like 'Come along! Come along!' and give the impression that it is impatient and in a hurry. The aborigines interpret the notes as 'kurrawong.' Many of their bird names are derived from, or suggested by, the birds' own notes. In some places the kurrawongs and koolardis are called scrub magpies and black magpies, though they resemble the choughs' more than the magpies.' - Sydney Mail (NSW : 1912 - 1938), Wednesday 11 July 1928, page 18

Of course, nowadays we know that magpies carol to reinstate their territory - this is the same reason kookaburras sound out at dawn and dusk - to let other birds know the tree they are in, of ten with their children, and that this is 'their place'. 

However, it is this letter penned to the Sydney Morning Herald in the Spring of 1933 that celebrates this wonderful melodic music we hear from our local magpies we like best - we hope you like it too:



Sir, One word more and let my excuse be the fullest recognition of Australia's finest songster-the magpie, whether he be the black and white friend we all know or the white-backed so praised by the authorities. The departure of winter has meant the departure from my valley of the "snowie," for he likes his colder home country best. Still I can find no lessening in the volume of cheery magpie song. I admit his half-brother abounds here aplenty, and this being nesting season, and both pa and ma busy putting the new shack in serviceable order, their song from tree to tree resounds the whole live-long day. Theirs is the belief that the finest work in the magpie world is the building of a home. A couple of small sticks dropped into position gives occasion for an admiring joyful chorus, then off again to work. What a pity the Broadcasting Com-mission does not add to its opening morning session the gay, hopeful carol of the magpie. The old kookaburra is good in his way, but he always sounds as if he had the laugh on us.

I must thank the correspondents to your columns for correcting my impression regarding the non-singing of the snow magpie. To those, too, who, in fond recollection of a youthful home pet, have written me personally, I offer the gratitude of a nature-lover. I cannot but admit now that the "snowie" under some conditions must warble. Most of my correspondents recount Victorian experiences. Could it be that the Victorian atmosphere had such an enheartening effect upon their bird spirits that they responded in praise to life in that more pleasant State? To the opinion of Mr. Owen Litchfield, of Cooma, I pay every respect, because he has seen with his eyes and heard with his ears what my eyes and my ears have failed to give me over the past twenty odd winters. (As I write, the black and white fellows are carolling away in the orchard in rain and cold wind as if the sun were shining in the very brightest and best of worlds, and no such thing as a depression existed). 

Mr. D. G. Stead's views on nature subjects are ever enlightening. Perhaps next winter, when Kiandra's white mantle sends down to us again the annual migration. I may be able to induce him to share my corn beef and damper for a few days while we endeavour to find out the reason for the silence while here of the handsome "snowie." And he may be able to discover also what causes such great mortality among them some winters when first arriving here; they drop dead from the trees in scores, seemingly plump and health.

September 16.

CAROL OF THE MAGPIE. (1933, September 21). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved from

Staying Safe at Schoolies

Some of you may be heading off to Schoolies celebrations over the next few weeks, and if you are, we'd like to ask you to please look out for and after each other as you first rule for yourselves. This Issue we've compiled a few tips and ideas from experts to keep the emphasis on enjoying this well-earned break and making sure it's a time when you create great memories.

Before you start - planning ahead helps you have a drama free time:
  • Leave a copy of your bank card details at home in case you lose it and have to cancel it, take your bank contact details with you so that you can report lost or stolen cards
  • Make sure you’ll have enough money to cover all the essentials while you’re away, including an emergency stash
  • Know where you’re staying and how you will be getting there and home again
  • Have a safe place you can store any important documents or valuables while you’re away - a lockable side pocket within a bag works best
  • Remember your phone charger and make sure you have plenty of credit/data, so that you can stay in touch with home or call for help if you need to - also remember to stop when packing to come home, look around you and make sure you pack that charger
  • When you’ve booked your accommodation make sure your parents or carers have a copy of the details – they will want to know where you are and that you are safe
What to pack: 

You don't need to take EVERYTHING - you won't use it - you will cart it there and then cart it home! Just 2 x good dresses (one for day, one for evening) or shirts and jeans/pants will suffice - remember we're in the Season of change and it may be hot one day and cold the next - pack a jumper or a fold away waterproof jacket, just in case (Justin Case).
You will also need:
  • Your ID and Drivers Licence
  • Your phone charger
  • A decent hat, sunscreen and mozzie repellent
  • Some comfy shoes - closed in, as well as sandals/thongs - there be ants and spiders out there!
  • Basic First Aid kit – band aids, safety pins and paracetamol 
  • Any medications you might need - leave the scripts at home so you don't lose them
  • Transportable food; muesli bars, instant noodles, cup-a-soups, a mix of dried fruits and nuts
  • Soap bag - deodorant, a cake of soap, shampoo, toothpaste and toothbrush, a comb, a shaver
  • Reusable water bottle - carrying around the non-reusable plastic pose version is NOT fashionable any longer
Staying safe: 
  • PLEASE make sure someone always knows where you are going and when to expect you back – ideally go out with a minimum of one other person or stick together as a group
  • Have a way of staying in touch with your parents and contacting them in an emergency - maybe decide before heading off that you will send them a text in the morning and check in via phone call at a certain time each afternoon/evening. Remember it’s FREE to use public pay phones across Australia now. You could also give your parents contact details to a couple of your friends going away with you (and their parents too if you know them).
  • When you’re out and about, stay with your friends and have a plan to meet up at a certain time and place if you lose each other in the crowd
  • Be careful about who you tell where you are staying – arrange to meet new friends in a public place rather than at your accommodation
  • Plan how you will get back to your accommodation and make sure you have enough money left at the end of the night to follow your plan
  • If you’re walking around late at night please stick to well-lit areas
  • Don’t leave your drinks unattended or accept drinks from strangers
  • Don't take drugs - the only way to stay safe around drugs at Schoolies is to not take them. There is no safe level of illicit drug use – taking drugs is always risky as no one can ever be sure of what they are really taking, but more importantly, you can never know how your body will react - effects can vary between people or can give different results for the same person on different occasions
  • Don't post 'stuff' to social media that you may regret having put out there the following day; keep some 'this is mine' stuff just for yourself; set profiles to ‘private’ or ‘friends only’ and only accept friend requests from people you know and trust or/and set an agreement with friends that consent must be given by all parties before uploading and/or tagging a photo and videos
Top ten points for the teen who chooses to drink alcohol at Schoolies (remember you don't have to drink to have a great time and that you may prefer to be bouncing around at dawn instead of dragging your feet):
  1. it is illegal to drink alcohol at Schoolies under the age of 18
  2. it’s an offence to supply alcohol to someone under the age of 18 – you could face fines of up to $10,444
  3. it is illegal to drink in public and to be drunk in a public place – no matter what their age - these are the laws for all of Queensland - not just during Schoolies
  4. under 18’s can’t carry alcohol in public (even if you’re holding it for a mate whilst he does up his shoe lace)
  5. it’s okay to say no – if you think you have had too much or don’t want to drink at all, just say no
  6. avoid mixing alcohol and medication (or any type of drug) - the side effects could be very serious
  7. take it in turns to have one sober friend every night
  8. give your body a break - just because it’s Schoolies doesn’t mean you have to drink every night (the human body is not designed to party for seven straight nights)
  9. when out and about, if you (or a friend) have had too much to drink, they can always ask a Safer Schoolies volunteer for assistance
  10. balconies can become very dangerous after drinking alcohol – stay well away from them if under the influence.
There’s plenty of help around if you need it, so don’t be afraid to ask police, security, emergency services, officials and volunteers - that's what they're there for - to help you
There’s other tips about how to party safely and avoid potential dangers, plus what to do in an emergency here - if you're heading overseas, please check out these tips from Smart Traveller 

Also available: – provides tips and advice regarding the practicalities of booking accommodation for Schoolies venues across the country. is in its 34th year of operation with over 680,000 students having used their services in that time. They offer centralised, online (or telephone) booking services for over 140 properties in all popular Schoolies destinations nationally (QLD, NSW,VIC, WA) and internationally (Bali, Fiji). Packages offered to students include photo ID passes, 24-hour helpline for students/parents/property managers and additional security arrangements.

Red Frogs – in 1997,  Red Frogs Australia founder Andy Gourley hit Schoolies Week on the Gold Coast with his skateboarding mates and realised the need for a designated sober person. Over the next 20 years, Red Frogs grew to be the largest harm-prevention program in Australia for both Schoolies and universities. In situations such as Schoolies/Leavers Weeks, excessive consumption of alcohol and other substances means that things can often get out of hand and potentially alter the direction of a young person’s future. The Red Frog crew act as the eyes and ears in accommodation venues and out on the streets, providing a positive peer presence to school leavers. Each year over 1500 Red Frog volunteers provide direct relief, safety and support to young people during Schoolies Week across 17 locations nationally and internationally.

Byron Bay Schoolies 2022

More than 6,000 school leavers are expected to celebrate the end of their formal education in Byron Bay over the Schoolies Week period which starts on 26 November 2022.

“It’s such an exciting time for these young people who are all brimming with enthusiasm about not only finishing high school, but what the future holds in store for them,” Byron Shire Mayor, Michael Lyon, said.

“My message to Schoolies is one of welcome but it’s so important that they party responsibly, don’t take risks, and look after each other,” Mayor Lyon said.

Schoolies in Byron Bay is not an organised event, rather Byron Bay just happens to be the destination that people come to.

Council has no role in planning activities or promoting Schoolies Week, with the NSW Police taking the lead on community safety.

“Our local Police are prepared for the influx of school leavers and their aim will be to make sure that everyone has a great time but in the safest possible way,” Mayor Lyon said.

Council staff work with the Police as well as other community organisations such as Red Frogs and the Byron Youth Service who will provide services during the Schoolies Week period.

Council has provided funding to the Red Frogs and Byron Youth Service to support their Schoolies Week programs.

The Red Frog volunteers will be there to talk to and support young people and the Byron Youth Service will be operating the Street Cruise program which is also aimed at reducing harm and connecting teenagers with information and services.

Much of Byron Bay’s CBD is an alcohol-free zone and Council and Police enforce these zones year-round, including during Schoolies Week.

“I still remember the incredible feeling of finishing school and I hope all the teenagers who come to Byron Bay go home with fond memories of a wonderful time,” Mayor Lyon said.

“I do ask everyone to please respect our town, our residents, businesses and our natural environment while you are here,” he said.

Schoolies road safety tips

The countdown is on to the biggest celebration of high school – Schoolies. Have you thought about how you’re getting there and home safely?

RACQ’s latest Young Drivers Survey found distraction (GPS and phone) and fatigue are among the most common safety issues for young drivers – and with the excitement of a week-long party with friends, these are likely to become even bigger concerns.

RACQ Education Manager Rhonda McKenzie said it was best to plan ahead to ensure they’re getting to their destination safely.

“Leave the car at home and get dropped off by parent or guardian if that’s an option,” Ms McKenzie suggested.

“If you are carpooling with friends, make sure you ‘set, forget, no regret’.

“Before you turn your car on, set your phone up – give it to a friend in the car, set it to ‘do not disturb' or put it away out of sight, then forget about it. You don’t want to be faced with a fine, loss of your licence, or more importantly harming yourself or friends by crashing your car due to distraction.”

And don't forget the restrictions for red P-Platers.

“Remember, you must have a zero blood alcohol concentration to drive, even the morning after, and you’re only allowed to have one passenger under 21 who isn’t an immediate family between 11pm and 5am,” she said.

When you’re at Schoolies make sure you’re looking out for your friends.

“Before you go away, talk to your parents about the ‘one phone call – no questions’ strategy and think about who you would call for help if you found yourself in a bad situation.

“Don’t let the fear of getting in trouble stop you from saving a life or helping a friend.” 

Rat Park, Warriewood
Celebrate summer's first Sun Set. 3 stages. 42+ artists. Making memories. Together

The Rions Christmas Special 2 at Dee Why RSL

Announcing the 2nd edition of our Christmas Special show! It's happening on December 17th at Dee Why RSL (18+) and tickets are on sale now! Our last one sold out so make sure you get in quick. It's gonna be next level with special guests Molly Millington, The Good Love, Liquid Time and Chloe Dadd.


School Leavers Support

Explore the School Leavers Information Kit (SLIK) as your guide to education, training and work options in 2022;
As you prepare to finish your final year of school, the next phase of your journey will be full of interesting and exciting opportunities. You will discover new passions and develop new skills and knowledge.

We know that this transition can sometimes be challenging and the COVID-19 pandemic has presented some uncertainty. With changes to the education and workforce landscape, you might be wondering if your planned decisions are still a good option or what new alternatives are available and how to pursue them.

There are lots of options for education, training and work in 2022 to help you further your career. This information kit has been designed to help you understand what those options might be and assist you to choose the right one for you. Including:
  • Download or explore the SLIK here to help guide Your Career.
  • School Leavers Information Kit (PDF 5.2MB).
  • School Leavers Information Kit (DOCX 0.9MB).
  • The SLIK has also been translated into additional languages.
  • Download our information booklets if you are rural, regional and remote, Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, or living with disability.
  • Support for Regional, Rural and Remote School Leavers (PDF 2MB).
  • Support for Regional, Rural and Remote School Leavers (DOCX 0.9MB).
  • Support for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander School Leavers (PDF 2MB).
  • Support for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander School Leavers (DOCX 1.1MB).
  • Support for School Leavers with Disability (PDF 2MB).
  • Support for School Leavers with Disability (DOCX 0.9MB).
  • Download the Parents and Guardian’s Guide for School Leavers, which summarises the resources and information available to help you explore all the education, training, and work options available to your young person.

School Leavers Information Service

Are you aged between 15 and 24 and looking for career guidance?

Call 1800 CAREER (1800 227 337).

SMS 'SLIS2022' to 0429 009 435.

Our information officers will help you:
  • navigate the School Leavers Information Kit (SLIK),
  • access and use the Your Career website and tools; and
  • find relevant support services if needed.
You may also be referred to a qualified career practitioner for a 45-minute personalised career guidance session. Our career practitioners will provide information, advice and assistance relating to a wide range of matters, such as career planning and management, training and studying, and looking for work.

You can call to book your session on 1800 CAREER (1800 227 337) Monday to Friday, from 9am to 7pm (AEST). Sessions with a career practitioner can be booked from Monday to Friday, 9am to 7pm.

This is a free service, however minimal call/text costs may apply.

Call 1800 CAREER (1800 227 337) or SMS SLIS2022 to 0429 009 435 to start a conversation about how the tools in Your Career can help you or to book a free session with a career practitioner.

All downloads and more available at:

Be The Boss: I Want To Be A Meteorologist

For those of us who are frequently looking up to watch cloud types sail across the channels of the sky or those who check the tides and moon phase to see what swell may be about to roll through, a career in the field of Metrology may be worth looking into.

Meteorologists are scientists who study and predict atmospheric conditions. They also offer advice in natural disaster scenarios and research current and past weather events. Meteorologists usually work in scientific laboratories, although some work in the field, and a few work in broadcasting as weather presenters.

Duties and tasks
  • Advise governmental and non-profit agencies, as well as private businesses and individuals, on safety during natural disasters.
  • Forecast both short and long-term weather patterns and changes.
  • Teach at universities or other higher-education institutions.
  • Research the physics and dynamics of climate change.
  • Study the atmosphere to understand weather patterns.

In 2012 Pittwater Online News ran a Profile on Mona Vale gentleman David Hanley who was at that time part of the Australian BOM - there was interesting reading, insights and knowledge through experience shared there. Thank you David!

The Australian Bureau of Metrology offers this information about becoming a Meteorologist.

Graduate Meteorologist

About our Graduate Meteorologist Program
Our Graduate Program pays you to study for a Graduate Diploma in Meteorology. With our training and support, you will be equipped with the qualification and skills to become the next generation of Meteorologists at the Bureau.

We're the only Australian education provider to offer an internationally recognised Graduate Diploma in Meteorology that meets the World Meteorological Organization standard.

Entering the Graduate Meteorologist Program as a full-time, permanent employee with the Bureau, you'll be paid as you complete the 10-month intensive training course. At the Bureau Meteorological Training Centre in Melbourne, you'll study:
  • foundations of meteorology
  • synoptic-scale meteorology
  • mesoscale meteorology
  • weather services and procedures.
On successful completion of the training, you will transition into one of our operational centres, developing knowledge as you work with our experts.

A new outlook for your career
Successful graduates will continue on to employment with the Bureau of Meteorology and be placed in a role within a range of industries and sector across the country, these include -
  • Forecasting and warnings for emergency services
  • Supporting the Australian Defence Force
  • Providing services to domestic and international aviation customers
  • Supporting Australia's Antarctic operations
  • Providing services to the energy and resource sector
  • Offering services for the maritime industry
  • Decision support services to a variety of specialised agencies
Eligibility and entry requirements
Australian citizens must have an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in science, engineering or other field with studies in physics and mathematics from a recognised university or tertiary institution.

Copies of your academic transcripts, must be submitted as part of your online application.

If you studied overseas, you need to provide evidence that your qualifications are equivalent to these standards and provide this in English. Visit the National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition before applying.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation
We offer affirmative measure positions as part of our commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment outcomes. To discuss your options please contact us.

Learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander inclusion and opportunities at the Bureau of Meteorology.

Application process
Applications are now closed and will reopen in 2023.

More information
To view all our current career opportunities visit our current vacancies page.
To keep informed of our career opportunities, register to receive our Job Alert emails.

Watch our Graduate Meteorologist webinar
Find out more about the Program by watching our Graduate Meteorologist Program Webinar held in July 2022.

During the webinar you will learn about the program, the career outcomes for graduates and what it takes to lodge a successful application. You will also hear from our employees on what a day in the life of a meteorologist is like.

You can also watch the recording from the 2021 Graduate Meteorologist webinar online.

Graduate Diploma of Meteorology
In addition to our Graduate Meteorologist Program, we also offer the Graduate Diploma of Meteorology on a fee-paying basis.

This stand-alone course is only available to students employed by a meteorological agency or another organisation (such as the Royal Australian Navy) or international students employed by their country's meteorological agency. Your employer must pay the course costs.

Course overview
You can enrol in either the Graduate Diploma of Meteorology (4 units) or the Basic Instruction Package for Meteorologists (the first 3 units of the Graduate Diploma).

The Basic Instruction Package for Meteorologists includes the WMO-recognised qualification for meteorologists and is required by the International Civil Aviation Organization for aviation meteorologists.

The Graduate Diploma covers the above, but also includes an extra unit about weather services and procedures.

Entry requirements for international students
You must be employed by your country's meteorological agency to be eligible. They must pay your course fees and living expenses.

You also must have minimum results on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS):
  • 550 for a paper-based TOEFL
  • 213 for a computer based TOEFL
  • 6.5 IELTS
CRICOS details
CRICOS Provider 02015K
Graduate Diploma in Meteorology CRICOS Course Code 033984D

Course costs
Course costs for 2023 are still to be confirmed. Costs from 2022 are listed below.
  • A$28,700 for the Basic Instruction Package for Meteorologists
  • A$35,400 for the Graduate Diploma in Meteorology (includes the Basic Instruction Package)
How to apply for the Graduate Diploma of Meteorology
Expressions of interest for the Graduate Diploma of Meteorology can be submitted via email to

More information
For information about the Graduate Program please email for alternative arrangements.

Keep informed of our career opportunities, register to receive our Job Alert emails.

Summer Skills Fee Free Courses

Summer Skills is a fee-free* short course program to support school leavers, aged between 15 – 24 years, obtain job-ready skills over the summer months.

Whether you plan to attend TAFE NSW, university, have a gap year or are still undecided, we have a course that can give you the skills for a brighter future.

Priority industry areas have been identified under Skilling for Recovery and include short courses in Early Childhood Care, Aged Care, Disability, Hospitality, Construction, Agriculture, Business and Administration, IT and Digital, Retail, Transport and Logistics, Manufacturing/Engineering and Sport and Recreation.

For example - starting November 23, 2022 at Ryde: STATEMENT OF ATTAINMENT IN COMMERCIAL COOKERY BASICS



Find out more at:

Also available:

Word Of The Week: bark

Word of the Week returns in 2022 simply to throw some disruption in amongst the 'yeah-nah' mix.

noun; 1. the sharp explosive cry of a dog, fox, or seal.

verb; 1. (of a dog, fox, or seal) give a bark. 2. utter (a command or question) abruptly or aggressively.

noun: bark; 1. the tough protective outer sheath of the trunk, branches, and twigs of a tree or woody shrub. 2. thin sheets of chocolate topped with ingredients such as nuts, confectionery, and dried fruit and broken into irregularly shaped pieces

From: Old English beorc (noun), beorcan (verb), of Germanic origin; possibly related to break

verb. 1. strip the bark from (a tree or piece of wood). 2. (Technical)tan or dye (leather or other materials) using the tannins found in bark. Middle English: from Old Norse bǫrkr ; perhaps related to birch.

From: Middle English: from Old Norse bǫrkr ; perhaps related to birch.


noun: bark; plural noun: barks; a ship or boat; a sailing ship, typically with three masts, in which the foremast and mainmast are square-rigged and the mizzenmast is rigged fore and aft.

From: late Middle English: variant of barque. Middle English: from Old French, probably from Provençal barca, from late Latin barca ‘ship's boat’.

In the 18th century, the Royal Navy used the term bark for a nondescript vessel that did not fit any of its usual categories. Thus, when the British admiralty purchased a collier for use by James Cook in his journey of exploration, she was registered as HM Bark Endeavour to distinguish her from another Endeavour, a sloop already in service at the time. She happened to be a full-rigged ship with a plain bluff bow and a full stern with windows.

William Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine defined "bark", as "A general name given to small ships: it is however peculiarly appropriated by seamen to those which carry three masts without a mizzen topsail. Our Northern Mariners, who are trained in the coal-trade, apply this distinction to a broad-sterned ship, which carries no ornamental figure on the stem or prow."

A 1993 replica of HM Bark Endeavour. Photo: John M Wheatley.

Mukbang, #EatWithMe and eating disorders on TikTok: why online food consumption videos could fuel food fixations

Sijun Shen, Monash University and Vivienne Lewis, University of Canberra

You might have come across #EatWithMe videos on TikTok, which typically feature young women eating food while encouraging viewers to eat along with them. Many such content creators say they aim to help people with eating disorders overcome their fear of food.

But some videos tagged #EatWithMe also feature the hashtag “mukbang” (which are videos showing people eating an often vast amount of food).

So, what’s the connection between #EatWithMe videos and mukbang? And what are we to make of claims #EatWithMe videos could help people overcome a fear of eating?

#EatWithMe videos

The #EatWithMe videos on TikTok represent a relatively recent genre that emerged during the pandemic.

The creators of TikTok #EatWithMe videos usually claim to positively influence viewers’ relationship with food. They encourage viewers to eat along with them, as a way to overcome urges to avoid food. Many say they are themselves in recovery from an eating disorder.

As an expert in eating disorders I (Vivienne Lewis) can tell you these videos are very unlikely to assist people in their recovery. In fact, a fascination with eating and watching others eat can be a symptom of a restrictive eating disorder. Watching #eatwithme and mukbang content could even fuel the eating disorder.

Firstly, eating disorder recovery is about more than just eating. It is about a person’s perception of their body and themselves, their self esteem, how they deal with emotions and feelings of self worth.

The eating part of recovery from an eating disorder involves five stages called the RAVES model. This stands for regular eating, adequate eating, eating a variety of foods, eating socially and spontaneous eating.

It often takes a person many months, if not years, to achieve this. It requires encouragement and support from an accredited practising dietitian, an accredited psychologist and family and friends. It can not be achieved through simply watching videos of people eating. If that was the case, a person would recover simply from watching friends eat.

Eating disorders are serious mental health conditions that require specialist treatment and care. Turning to untrained influencers for advice or treatment strategies comes with serious risk.

A fascination with eating and watching others eat can be a symptom of a restrictive eating disorder. Shutterstock

Mukbang: ‘broadcast eating’

It’s noteworthy that many #EatWithMe videos include “#mukbang” among the accompanying hashtags. The videos that feature both hashtags tend not to centre on eating disorder recovery but rather on the spectacle of seeing a person heartily, and often noisily, eat a large meal.

However, the fact many videos feature both hashtags means it would be easy for people with eating disorders to come across mukbang videos.

Mukbang videos – a phenomenon I (Sijun Shen) have studied – feature people eating vast amounts of food, such as 10,000 calorie meals or almost 50 pieces of KFC in one sitting.

Mukbang originated in Korea in around 2008, and is a phonetic translation of the Korean words 먹방 (먹다 means eat and 방송 means broadcast) – it literally means broadcast eating. Mukbang videos, which have been described as “gastronomic voyeurism”, soon became an international trend.

As anthropologist and ethnographer Crystal Abidin has observed, the ability to consume a large quantity of food while looking slim has been a general theme or selling point for mukbang videos.

Many mukbang celebrities are physically slim. Their videos, while not always explicitly claiming to be therapeutic, often send the unspoken message one can find release by overeating, all while staying slim. Many parts of Asia have punishingly difficult beauty standards that elevate slimness as a physical ideal worth pursuing at any cost. For people starving themselves in pursuit of this goal, there may be something cathartic in watching another person eat freely and with gusto.

Mukbang originated in Korea in around 2008. Sjutterstock

As I (Sijun Shen) found through my research of mubkang culture, certain mukbang and “eat-streaming” communities in some countries (such as China) have been formed by fans who are also active in online eating disorder communities. Less discussed are reports of mukbang influencers being hospitalised, fainting or losing teeth during live eat-streaming sessions.

Mukbang and #EatWithMe videos share some common visual themes. Both usually (but not always) use the image of a relatively slim girl eating food as a form of visual entertainment and release.

It is not hard to see how people with eating disorders may start by watching #EatWithMe videos centred around eating disorder recovery but end up watching mukbang videos.

Given the link between mukbang communities and online eating disorder communities, it seems unlikely exposure to these videos is helpful for a person recovering from an eating disorder.

Eating disorders are complex

Eating disorders are complex and require evidence-based treatment. This treatment can be expensive and hard to access, so it may be no surprise people are turning to TikTok for help.

But online influencers are generally not trained professionals.

While many content creators may mean well there is scant evidence watching TikTok #EatWithMe or mukbang videos can successfully treat eating disorders – and they may end up fuelling food fixation in people with eating disorders.

If this article has raised issues for you, consider contacting the Butterfly Foundation on 1800 33 4673 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.The Conversation

Sijun Shen, Lecturer, Media and Communications Studies, Monash University, Monash University and Vivienne Lewis, Assistant professor – Psychology, University of Canberra

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Scientists need help to save nature. With a smartphone and these 8 tips, we can get our kids on the case

Judy Friedlander, University of Technology Sydney and Thomas Mesaglio, UNSW Sydney

Citizen science is touted as a way for the general public to contribute to producing new knowledge. But citizen science volunteers don’t always represent a broad cross-section of society. Rather, they’re often white, male, middle-aged, educated and already interested in science.

This lack of representation has several problems. It can undermine the potential of citizen science to bridge the divide between lay people and experts. It also means fewer people benefit from the chance to advance their informal science education and gain valuable life skills.

It’s important that citizen science projects engage volunteers from across society, including young people. A new Australian initiative is doing just that.

The B&B BioBlitz aims to get school students gathering data about Australia’s natural environment. This year’s event shows how citizen science in school can help develop STEM skills and make gains in biodiversity research.

young child hides behind tree branch
For citizen science to be truly inclusive it must engage all age groups, including children. Shutterstock

More hands on deck

It’s broadly acknowledged that Australia needs more hands on deck when it comes to scientific data collection. For example, only about 30% of Australia’s estimated 750,000 species have been formally named and documented. Rectifying this will require an enormous uptick in information gathering.

What’s more, Australia has one of the world’s worst extinction records. Citizen science is an important way to fill information gaps, identify species’ declines and their causes, inform conservation decisions and evaluate their effectiveness.

This year’s State of the Environment report recognised the need for more citizen science. It said the level of biodiversity research required “cannot be achieved by professionals and institutions alone”.

That’s where the B&B BioBlitz comes in.

Man kneels in mangrove taking notes
The task of biodiversity monitoring is far too big for professional scientists to undertake alone. Shutterstock

What exactly is a BioBlitz?

The B&B BioBlitz is a national school citizen science program co-ordinated by PlantingSeeds Projects – a non-profit sustainability organisation founded by the lead author of this article. The inaugural event ran in National Biodiversity Month in September this year. Both authors of this article were project organisers and educators.

Sixty schools from across every Australian state and territory participated. Participants comprised students from infants to high school, and their teachers.

Most schools are located in urban areas, which makes them particularly valuable sites for scientific research. Many threatened plant and animal species live in urban areas, yet, only 5% of citizen science projects in Australia are urban-based.

The project involved students taking images of plant and animal species in their school grounds on devices such as tablets and smartphones provided by the school. Students also recorded information such as the time, date and location of the photo.

A designated teacher uploaded the photos and data to the B&B BioBlitz project on iNaturalist, one of the world’s most popular biodiversity citizen science platforms and apps. At the time of writing, iNaturalist contained more than 121 million observations uploaded by citizens from around the world.

Throughout September, students made more than 2,300 observations in school grounds, involving 635 plant, animal and fungi species. Students could log onto iNaturalist to see a project “leaderboard”, browse the observations submitted and learn about species’ taxonomy and distribution.

photos uploaded to citizen science app
A screenshot from iNaturalist, showing some of the 635 plant and animal species observed during the BioBlitz. iNaturalist

A study has demonstrated young people can contribute observations to iNaturalist that are “research grade” – and therefore more accessible and potentially useful to biodiversity research and monitoring. And the longer they participate for, the better their observations become.

Observations of species during this project contributed to more comprehensive datasets that scientists can now draw upon. Of note were images of an uncommon “Balsam Beast” katydid and the iconic Sturt’s desert pea.

Almost all observations uploaded to iNaturalist are also directly exported to the CSIRO’s Atlas of Living Australia.

The pros and cons

Verbal and online feedback by students reveals how citizen science can be a practical and positive experience.

One North Melbourne primary school student said the activity made her feel “like being more a part of a community”.

One student in Darwin said the activity was “the most fun he had ever had” and his teacher reported that while taking part, the student was “the most engaged he had seen”.

But the B&B BioBlitz was not without its challenges.

Many teachers, including science teachers, had limited knowledge of citizen science and often hadn’t heard of the term. This meant that teachers needed basic education on the topic prior to any school involvement in the BioBlitz.

Teachers are busy and face many pressing demands. However, if the benefits of citizen science are to be fully realised, there’s a need to broaden teacher awareness of the practice, and improve their skills in accessing databases such as iNaturalist.

8 tips for successful biodiversity citizen science

So how can young people be helped to take a good citizen science observation? The following eight tips offer a guide:

  1. Capture as many angles and as much information as you can. While some groups such as birds can often be recognised from a single photograph, many other taxa require multiple features for a positive identification to be made

  2. When observing plants, photograph as many features as possible. This includes flowers and leaves (from above and below), bark, fruit if present, a branch showing leaf arrangement, and a shot of the whole plant to give a sense of its growth habit

  3. Photograph fungi from above, below (showing the gills or pores) and the side

  4. Record the “substrate” you find a fungus on, such as soil or dead wood, and the type of soil a plant is growing in

  5. Insect identification can often be helped by the number and position of veins in an insect’s wing. Try and capture this by getting shots from directly above

  6. Noting the plant you find a beetle or bug on can aid identification and provide useful ecological data

  7. If you find a spider in a web, photographs of both the upper and undersides can be helpful

  8. If in doubt, just record as much information as you can. You never know who might find your data useful!The Conversation

Judy Friedlander, Adjunct Fellow, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney and Thomas Mesaglio, PhD candidate, UNSW Sydney

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Clothes women wanted to wear: a new exhibition explores how Carla Zampatti saw her designs as a tracker of feminism

Carla Zampatti middriff top and pants, 1971. Photograph: Warwick Lawson
Peter McNeil, University of Technology Sydney

The late Carla Zampatti is celebrated in a splendid retrospective Zampatti Powerhouse at the Powerhouse Museum. Planned well before the fashion designer’s untimely death last year, the unveiling of her legacy will be bittersweet to her many fans.

Zampatti is often referred to as “Carla” by friends and those who worked for her, rather than her brand name, Carla Zampatti. Here, the simple name “Zampatti” removes the emphasis from Zampatti as designer to a simpler assertion: businesswoman, mother, philanthropist-entrepreneur.

It is a move as deft and elegant as the rest of the exhibition choices.

In one of the best-looking fashion exhibition designs Australia has seen, creative director Tony Assness serves up a dynamic vision of clothes punctuated by a vibrant red (one of Zampatti’s favourite design choices) that encourages excitement and discovery. Clothes are arranged by themes – jumpsuit, jungle, graphic, blouson, power – rather than date.

Curator Roger Leong leverages his years of experience to do a relatively new thing for Australian museums: tell the stories of clothes through the stories of women who wore them.

‘Animal’ group with close-up of beaded ‘Carla’ cape, 2016 . Zampatti Powerhouse exhibition. Photograph by Zan Wimberley.

A migrant story

Zampatti’s story is an Australian migrant story. Born Maria Zampatti in Italy in 1938 (not 1942, as is often believed), she did not meet her father, who had migrated to Fremantle, until she was 11.

In Australia, she was forced to change her name to Mary. It was claimed the other kids could not pronounce Maria. She did not finish school. When she moved to Sydney in her late 20s, she reinvented herself as Carla.

The fashion business started on a kitchen table in 1965 under the label ZamPAtti. By 1970, Carla had bought out her business partner husband, and was sole owner of Carla Zampatti Pty Ltd.

Zampatti flourished in fashion. She had a finger on the pulse, was in the right place at the right time, and knew a more glamorous role was possible for a fashion designer than the industry “rag trader”.

Zampatti Powerhouse exhibition. Photograph by Zan Wimberley.

In the 1970s, the markets suggested that the ultra-expensive haute couture was about to disappear, to be replaced by informal ranges created by a new type of designer often called a “stylist”. It was the decade of flower power, retro dressing and ethnic borrowings.

Until the 1960s, fashion had been dominated by the rise of haute couture and the “dictator-designer” system – mainly men who determined hem lengths and silhouettes for women. But in 1973, the French body governing high fashion added a new layer of designers, créateurs (literally “creators” or designers), who produced only ready-to-wear.

In 1972 Zampatti opened her first Sydney boutique, inspired by informal shops she had seen in St Tropez. Zampatti offered women bright jumpsuits, art deco looks and peasant-inspired ease.

Model promoting the Carla Zampatti Ford Laser and Ford Meteor, 1987. Photo courtesy of the Carla Zampatti archives

She aimed to provide women clothes they wanted to wear. She draped the cloth and colours on herself. Like many women designers historically, she was alert to how her clothes made women customers look and feel. Zampatti remained the fit model for the whole range and would not produce anything in which she did not look and feel well.

Zampatti saw her “clothes as a tracker of feminism”.

The 1980s cemented Zampatti’s rise to prominence. She became a household name, even designing a car for women. In this time, personal expression became more important than unified looks dictated by designers. Zampatti’s Australian designing coincided with a new development in Italy: the stylisti. Small, focused family businesses alert to the zeitgeist and understanding quality flourished. It was an approach that emphasised quality and glamour.

Zampatti identified talent. She employed well-known couturier Beril Jents on the shop floor after she had fallen on hard times. She then employed Jents to improve the cut of her designs.

Zampatti continued to embrace the services of stylists and other designers including Romance was Born, whom she recognised could take her work to the next level.

Carla Zampatti preparing models for Spring - Summer 2010 show. Photo courtesy of Prudence Upton

The stories of clothes

Worn equally by politicians and their circles on the right and the left, Zampatti injected more than power dressing into women’s wardrobes. She inspired a sense that women wore the clothes, not the clothes them.

In this exhibition we are given many examples, from Linda Burney’s red pantsuit worn for her parliamentary portrait to a gown worn by Jennifer Morrison to the White House.

Zampatti Powerhouse exhibition. Photograph by Zan Wimberley.

The exhibition viewer can turn from serried ranks of brilliantly styled mannequins and enter large “listening pods”, screening brilliantly edited videos in the manner of artist Bill Viola. The women, who include Dame Quentin Bryce and Ita Buttrose, discuss the creative mind of Zampatti or reflect on their own Zampatti wardrobe. They are amongst the best such “talking heads” I have seen in a museum.

Like many designers, Zampatti was not that interested in her own past. She did not keep substantial archives and records, which is a testament to the skills demonstrated by the museum in bringing us this show.

Zampatti never turned her back on her personal story, but she was a futurist, one who looked forward rather than backward.

Zampatti Powerhouse is Powerhouse Ultimo, Sydney, until June 11 2023.The Conversation

Peter McNeil, Distinguished Professor of Design History, UTS, University of Technology Sydney

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Minimalist poet Antigone Kefala wins the Patrick White Award for her contribution to Australian literature

Antigone Kefafa. Giramondo Publishing
Elizabeth McMahon, UNSW Sydney

The news that Antigone Kefala has won the Patrick White Award is completely thrilling. She is a most deserving winner by all the terms of that prize.

White established the award with funds from his 1973 Nobel prize. It is awarded without application “to a writer who has been highly creative over a long period but has not necessarily received adequate recognition”.

This well describes Kefala, who has been writing extraordinary poetry and prose for over half a century and who, though immensely admired and respected, is far too little known and celebrated in Australia.

Kefala was born in Brăila, Romania, part of the Greek diaspora settled there since the mid-19th century. Her family became refugees, fleeing to Greece then to New Zealand, after World War II, when Romania was occupied by the Soviets. She arrived in Australia on her own in December 1959. Her account of sailing into Sydney must be one of the most joyous acclamations of arrival in Australian literature:

AUSTRALIA … AUSTRALIA … we entered Sydney Harbour a summer morning. The colours of the rock wall at the gap were warm apricot, the sun was coming down on the waters, the whole landscape shimmering, overflowing with light, with heat, with movement.

I was suddenly released from the greenness, from the rain, the wind, released, at least for the moment, from my inner problems. My past in Romania, in Greece came back as meaningful experience in a landscape that had similar resonances. Sydney seemed alive with people, activity and intellectual excitement.

Kefala’s jubilation comes from her recognition that she might be able to forge a way of living in this new place that resonates with the landscape and culture of her past. Sydney is both new and old, simultaneously evocative and original.

The passage shows the profound interconnection between the outer world and Kefala’s inner self, something that is characteristic of her writing. It also demonstrates her awareness of the necessity of community and a milieu. Inevitably perhaps, those initial hopes met with some disappointments, but her three volumes of memoir – Summer Visit (2003), Sydney Journals (2008) and Late Journals (2022) – provide a record of her daily constitution of this community, and of a creative life.

New, revived, original English

Kefala’s first language is Romanian, her second language is French, her third is Greek. Finally, there is English – her fourth language and the language of her literature. As she writes:

I feel you have to live in a language to be able to write in it and […] I couldn’t write in Romanian or Greek or French because they were languages that I had somehow passed through. English was the language I was actually living in – imperfectly.

But, as she continues:

My approach to English is not quite an English approach. The kind of imagery that I use, the kind of vocabulary that I use, the whole texture of my language is not an English texture.

The result is a new, revived, original English, as in this short example from her poem Nameless:

You are the resonance
in the fanatic colour
of the sky
intoxicating light
that fans over the sea
a heavy cloth of shimmering
white gems on the horizon

Excesses of a terror
that can never be appeased.

As her publisher Ivor Indyk has observed, Kefala’s voice is distinctive, characterised by a minimalism that is “evident in the short lines, which throw emphasis on syllables that are barely audible in English”.

This “accented English” is integral to the energy and intensity of her poetry. It revivifies English and its poetic capacities.

Patrick White Award recipient Antigone Kefala and her publisher Ivor Indyk. Giramondo Publishing

Some early readers of Kefala’s work struggled with these features, though she has always had her champions. The Patrick White Award recognises her brilliance. In their citation, the judges observed:

Kefala is a deliberately spare writer, practising an aesthetics of asceticism that is crucial to the power of her work across all forms. Her poetic minimalism belies the meticulous construction of echoes and patterns in her poetry, while the notable formal compression of both her prose and poetry distils intense experiences and perceptions.

Kefala has been contributing to Australian literature for 50 years, publishing many volumes of poetry, fiction and memoir. She has also been a strong supporter of community arts and has contributed to the promotion of a diverse Australian literature. In 2018, my colleague Brigitta Olubas and I held a conference on Kefala’s work, which led to the publication of Antigone Kefala: New Australian Modernities. In our introduction, we argued

Antigone Kefala is one of the most significant of the Australian writers who have come from elsewhere; it would be difficult to overstate the significance of her life and work in the culture of this nation.

Official recognition of Kafala’s enormous significance is not premature, but it is warmly welcome. The Conversation

Elizabeth McMahon, Professor of English literary studies, UNSW Sydney

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Watching Casablanca on its 80th anniversary, we remain in awe of its simplicity – and profound depth

AP Photo
Ben McCann, University of Adelaide

In November 1942, a romantic drama directed by a Hungarian immigrant and starring an ex-naval officer and an obscure Swedish actress was released. The film began shooting without a finished script.

Many at Warner Brothers Studios thought the film would quickly disappear into obscurity.

It would end up winning three Academy Awards (for best picture, director Michael Curtiz, and screenplay), starred the iconic pair Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman alongside a host of recognisable supporting players, featured a lush score and evocative set design, and contained endlessly quotable lines. Its reputation grows and grows.

Casablanca has become one of Hollywood’s most beloved films.

A film of vivid moments

Casablanca is a heady mix of romance, cynicism, thrills and danger. Based on an unproduced play, Everybody Comes to Rick’s, the film mainly takes place in a night-club run by Bogart in the Moroccan city during the second world war.

Rick’s Café is where desperate refugees try to get hold of illegal exit visas to America. Complications – with Nazi officials and officious French bureaucrats – ensue.

One night, Rick’s old flame Ilsa (Bergman) turns up with her resistance leader husband in search of safe passage to the States. Cue the famous line:

Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine.

It is full of vivid moments: Bogart and Bergman drinking champagne in Paris, Sydney Greenstreet in a fez, Peter Lorre trying to escape, Dooley Wilson sitting at the piano and singing THAT song.

Its production was fast-tracked to take advantage of the recent Allied invasion of North Africa. Casablanca was originally scheduled for an early 1943 release, but Warner Brothers capitalised on the resounding success of the US-led invasion, which in turn boosted box office receipts.

Casablanca would go into wide release on January 23 1943, to coincide with the Casablanca Conference, a strategic meeting between Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

A political allegory

Casablanca’s clearest theme is that neutrality – whether in war or in love – is difficult to maintain.

At the outset, Rick is staunchly apolitical: he is jaded, unmoved by the refugee crisis unfolding around him.

But we also learn Rick has been involved in political causes, supporting losing sides against the Fascists in Spain and Ethiopia. The film traces that ambivalence through Bogart’s masterful performance. His cynicism gradually softens once Ilsa turns up, and his animosity to the Nazi chief Strasser grows.

This political about-face comes to a head in one of the greatest scenes in Hollywood cinema: the singing of La Marseillaise at Rick’s Café in full defiance of the Nazi officers belting out a German anthem.

It is a deeply patriotic and uplifting scene, and reminds us of cinema’s power to engage us, move us and make us cheer.

It also turns the night-club into a microcosm for the war, with it multinational clientele and the competing strands of partisanship, neutrality, aggression and political commitment.

For an America wary of entering the European theatre, scenes like this reminded audiences of the need to fight injustice, intolerance and belligerence.

Remembering Ingrid Bergman

It is worth dwelling on Ingrid Bergman’s luminescent performance.

She plays the role of a woman who never displays where her romantic allegiances lie. Should she leave with Lazslo to America, or should she go back to Rick, and rekindle a love affair that ended abruptly in Paris?

The ambiguity in Bergman’s performance is due in large part to both a script that was constantly being rewritten and Curtiz’s indecision on how the film should end. But it is also a reminder of Bergman’s greatness.

The critic Roger Ebert once noted:

[Bergman] doesn’t simply gaze at [a man’s] eyes, as so many actresses do, their thoughts on the next line of dialogue. She peers into the eyes, searching for meaning and clues, and when she is in a close two-shot with an actor, watch the way her own eyes reflect the most minute changes in his expression.

Her scenes with Bogart exemplify this approach.

Many film historians argue Casablanca’s greatness is due to its “invisible” style: there are no flashy camera movements, or ostentatious cuts, or “look at me” acting.

French film critic André Bazin once famously attributed the success of Hollywood studio films to “the genius of the system”.

Films like Casablanca succeeded because they were made within a thriving ecosystem that placed storytelling, creative expertise, and cast and crew competence at the heart of its artistic practice.

And Casablanca’s script remains unbeatable. It’s worth remembering the lines of dialogue that have stayed with us ever since: “Here’s looking at you, kid”; “This is the beginning of a beautiful friendship”; “We’ll always have Paris”; and “Round up the usual suspects”.

Casablanca’s afterlife

Casablanca’s legacy is long-lasting.

Today, it ranks third on the American Film Institute’s 100 best movies of the last 100 years, and it is one of the most referenced films of all time.

Scholars love the film for its Freudian intertexts, while others see the title casa blanca – “white house: in Spanish – as a symbol for American foreign policy.

The Italian novelist Umberto Eco wrote Casablanca was "not just one film. It is many films […] it is a phenomenon worthy of awe”.

Watched today, we remain in awe of its simplicity, but also of its profound depth.The Conversation

Ben McCann, Associate Professor of French Studies, University of Adelaide

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Spending too much money? Tempted by sales? These ways to ‘hack’ your psychology can help

Jezael Melgoza/Unsplash
Adrian R. Camilleri, University of Technology Sydney

It’s late November, which means the holiday sales period has well and truly begun. If you haven’t already seen your spending go up, the possibility is looming.

And you probably have some concerns about spending your money wisely. Furthermore, shopping can be a harrowing experience, and our attitudes towards money are tied up in all kinds of feelings.

Based on psychology, here are three tips to improve the way you spend your hard-earned cash this holiday season.

Before the purchase – patience is your friend

One of the amazing features of the human mind is that we can mentally time travel: we can imagine what the future is going to feel like. Scientists call this “affective forecasting”.

Thinking about a future trip – imagining the warm sun, the sand between your toes, finding yourself smiling – is an example of such mental time travel.

However, it turns out we’re not very good at affective forecasting. We get wrong not only the emotions we will experience, but also their intensity and duration. Lottery winners are a classic example – contrary to expectations, many are not happy, or not happy for long.

More importantly, you can derive happiness from just anticipating future experiences. For example, one study measured the happiness of 974 people going on a trip compared with 556 people not going on a trip. As you might expect, the vacationers were relatively happier – but only before the trip.

So, how can we take advantage of our capacity to mentally time travel?

Tip #1: Pay now, consume later. These days, fuelled by the rise of “buy now, pay later” options, we get to consume what we want immediately. However, this instant gratification deprives us of a key source of happiness: anticipation. A better strategy is to commit to buy something and then wait a little before actually consuming it.

At the point of purchase – notice you’re paying

An inevitability of every purchase is spending money. This represents a cost, both in terms of the monetary value but also the opportunity to buy other things.

Costs are a form of loss, and we don’t like losing things. For that reason, it psychologically hurts to spend money. Scientists call this the “pain of paying”.

According to one theory of shopping, we decide to buy after making a mental calculation: is the anticipated pleasure of consuming higher than the anticipated pain of buying?

This calculus is even represented in the brain. For example, one study looking at people’s brains with fMRI while they purchased food found neural activity in areas linked to higher-order, affective pain processing, which correlated with how high the price was.

How did you pay for your last meal? Did you have to dig into your wallet or purse trying to extract the appropriate combination of notes and coins? Maybe you simply pulled out a plastic card and swiped it on the reader? Or perhaps you absentmindedly touched your smartphone to the machine.

A person holding up their smartphone to a contactless payment system
‘Tapping’ with your phone greatly reduces the pain of paying.

It turns out your method of payment changes how much pain you feel. In one study, researchers asked some university employees if they would like to buy a mug at a discounted price. Half were only allowed to pay in cash, whereas the other half had to use a debit or credit card.

Those who paid in cash self-reported more pain of paying. So, how can you use this to your advantage?

Tip #2: Ramp up the pain. If you’re worried about overspending this holiday period, ramp up the pain of paying. You can do this by using cash or receiving a notification each time money leaves your account.

After the purchase – stop chasing rainbows

A fundamental feature of human beings is that we are adaptive – we easily get used to the new normal. This applies to our purchases, too. Scientists call it “hedonic adaptation”: over time, consumption of the same thing brings decreasing happiness.

Remember the day you got your smartphone? You may have felt joy as you caressed the smooth aluminium back and watched light glint off the unblemished glass. Now look at your phone. What happened to the joy?

It’s normal to experience hedonic adaptation. However, one problem is that we don’t anticipate it.

Remember affective forecasting? Since satisfaction is a function of expectations relative to performance, when we fail to adjust our expectations in light of the inevitable hedonic adaptation, we end up dissatisfied.

The second problem with hedonic adaptation is that the obvious solution appears to be buying something new. Maybe you need a new smartphone to replace your slightly scratched-up old one? If this is your thinking, you’ve just hopped onto the hedonic treadmill.

Now the only way to maintain your happiness is to spend more and more money to get better and better versions of everything. So, how can you get off this treadmill?

Tip #3: Buy experiences, not things. It turns out people end up happier when they buy experiences rather than things. For example, a study that tracked how older adults spent their money found that only one category of spending was related to happiness: leisure purchases, such as going on trips, seeing a movie at the cinema, and cheering at sporting events.

One reason for this is that we adapt to purchases of experiences more slowly than purchases of material things.

So, the next time you’re tossing up between buying tickets to a festival or getting the latest gadget, pick up your scratched-up smartphone and pre-purchase some festival tickets for you and your friends.The Conversation

Adrian R. Camilleri, Senior Lecturer in Marketing, University of Technology Sydney

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

18th- and 19th-century Americans of all races, classes and genders looked to the ancient Mediterranean for inspiration

In a new land, the ancient past held special meaning. 'Temple of Aphaea, Aegina' by John Rollin Tilton. Courtesy of Bowdoin College Museum of Art
Sean P. Burrus, Bowdoin College

The ancient world of the Mediterranean has long permeated American society, in everything from museum collections to home furnishings. The design of the nation’s public monuments, buildings and universities, as well as its legal system and form of government, show the enduring influence of Mediterranean antiquity on American culture.

Until the late 19th century, Americans encountered the ancient world almost exclusively through reproductions – in books, artwork and even popular plays. Very few could afford to travel abroad to encounter Mediterranean artifacts firsthand.

Yet despite barriers to access, many Americans forged personal connections with the cultures of the ancient Mediterranean – not only the Greeks and Romans, but also the Egyptians and Israelites. Perhaps the newness of American culture inspired this deep interest in the ancient past.

One of the most fascinating aspects of Mediterranean antiquity’s influence on America, even before it officially became a country, is how it cut across cultural lines of race, class and gender. Far from being the preserve of a privileged few, the art and literature of the ancients was often embraced by Americans of all stripes – including the enslaved Black poet Phillis Wheatley (circa 1753-1784) and Black and Native American sculptor Edmonia Lewis (1844-1907). But the circumstances of these encounters and the way individual Americans thought about antiquity varied greatly.

I’m an art historian specializing in ancient Mediterranean art and culture. I am particularly fascinated by the way Americans, from the earliest days, made creative connections between past and present, despite being separated by thousands of miles and millennia of history.

In researching and selecting works of art for the exhibit “Antiquity and America,” on view at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, I was excited to show an exceptionally diverse range of American encounters with the ancient world, especially in portrait painting.

Marker of education

Take, for example, Samson Occom (1723-1792), a member of the Mohegan nation, Presbyterian minister and one of the first Native Americans to pen an autobiography in English.

Painting of a Native American man in a drapey shirt and cape looking to the right. Trees and sky are in the background.
The portrayal of Samson Occom includes symbols of both the Indigenous identity of the sitter and his connections to Mediterranean antiquity. Painted by Nathaniel Smibert. Courtesy of Bowdoin College Museum of Art

His unfinished portrait, painted by Nathaniel Smibert (1735-1756) in the mid-18th century, alluded to Occom’s Indigenous identity in the coloring of his skin and the styling of his hair. Simultaneously, it also referenced his training in classical literature and oratory, acquired by studying with Eleazar Wheelock (1711-1779), a Connecticut Congregational minister.

Occom’s pose and draped cloak recall those found on ancient statues of Roman senators – a portrait convention familiar in early America from prints circulating at the time – and one that would later become quite popular in American society.

While his learning in Greek and Latin was undoubtedly a source of great pride for Occom – and a way for him to level the playing field with the European colonists – it was used by others to demonstrate the “civilizing” effect of European culture and education in the British Colonies.

In 1776, Eleazar Wheelock sent his former pupil Occom to Great Britain to raise money for a Native American school – funds that were ultimately repurposed for the founding of Dartmouth College. Occom would later charge Wheelock with using him as a “gazing stock” in Europe while planning all the while to use the funds for the benefit of white settlers.

Shaping public opinion

A portrait of Sengbe Pieh, also known as Cinqué, who led the 1839 Amistad slave ship revolt, is an example of Black Americans’ use of the classical world for political purposes.

Painting of a black man holding a bamboo staff in a toga-like outfit looking to the left. The background shows a landscape with a cliff, distant mountain, tropical trees and a moody, cloudy sky.
Portraying Sengbe Pieh, who led the revolt on the slave ship Amistad, in the pose and garb of an ancient Roman senator was an intentional way to influence public opinion. Courtesy of Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Commissioned by Robert Purvis (1810-1898), a Black Philadelphian and prominent abolitionist, this striking portrait by John Sartain (1808-1897) was intended to shape the popular image of Pieh and his fellow Africans during their Supreme Court trial for mutiny and murder in 1840-1841.

Pieh’s African identity is made evident not only in the tone of his skin, but in the bamboo staff he holds and the landscape in background depicting his homeland. The white cloak draped over his shoulder would have called to mind the white robes worn by Roman senators and, by extension, the Roman virtues of honor and dignity.

Pieh and his fellow Africans were ultimately acquitted and returned to the Sierra Leone Colony in 1842.

Feminist icon

Woman posed outdoors in flowing robes holding a lute. In the background are hand written scrolls, the ocean and distant cliffs.
At the turn of the 20th century, a portrait of an American woman portrayed as the Greek poet Sappho connected the sitter to themes in the ancient work. Painted by Jean-Léon Gérôme, 1899. Courtesy of Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Caroline Sanders Truax (1870–1940), one of the first women admitted to the New York state bar, was so enamored by the ancient past she was portrayed as the Greek lyric poet Sappho by painter Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824–1904).

This was a bold choice for a representation of an American woman in 1899. Sappho, whose writing is among the only surviving sources of female authorship from antiquity, was already an icon of the first-wave feminist movement, and the homoerotic themes of her poetry were well understood. Was the choice the artist’s – or the sitter’s? The most likely answer is it was by mutual agreement, perhaps inspired by Truax’s knowledge of classical language and literature – and her own interest in composing lyric poetry.

The portrait was a sensation in New York society when it arrived from the artist’s studio in Paris. It was featured in several portrait exhibitions and newspaper articles – and was hung with pride by Truax and her husband in their home.

Painting of a man and his daughter walking under an elaborately sculpted Roman arch.
American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882) walks with his daughter under the Arch of Titus in Rome, with the famed Colosseum in the background. Painted by George Healy. Courtesy of Bowdoin College Museum of Art

For generations of Americans, the history and literature of Mediterranean antiquity was fertile ground for contemporary comparisons. It was universal enough to be brought into debates about the Constitution and founding principles of democracy, slavery and abolition, and women’s rights and suffrage. It was also of great individual significance for Americans of many different backgrounds – a past they were on intimate terms with, despite the millennia and miles separating the United States from the ancient Mediterranean.The Conversation

Sean P. Burrus, Post-Doctoral Curatorial Fellow, Bowdoin College

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Rosetta Stone: a new museum is reviving calls to return the artefact to Egypt

The Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza. Ashy Cat Inc, CC BY-NC-SA
Claire Gilmour, University of Bristol

With the Arab spring of 2011, a downturn in tourism and the devastation of COVID, the odds have been stacked against the opening of Giza’s Grand Egyptian Museum, work on which began in 2005 and is due to complete 2023.

Nevertheless, it will house over 100,000 artefacts and become the largest archaeological museum complex in the world. It is sure to draw millions of visitors to see the most complete story yet of ancient Egypt, told by Egyptians.

Highlights will include the entirety of Tutankhamun’s treasure, displayed together for the first time. However, as dazzling as this will be, it is unlikely to completely distract from the ever-present repatriation debate.

In fact, the museum’s opening looks set to mark a turning point in the academic debate around returning its most obvious missing artefact – the Rosetta Stone – to Egypt.

The case against repatriation

The Rosetta Stone has been the subject of a lengthy repatriation campaign. Rediscovered in 1799 by the French military campaign in the Egyptian Delta, following Napoleon’s defeat by the British, the stone was shipped to England in 1802. It has been on display at the British Museum ever since.

The Rosetta Stone, a slab of stone covered in small inscriptions, stands behind glass casing. The top of the stone is jagged and diagonal where the rest of the tablet has been lost.
Rosetta Stone on display at the British Museum. Reklamer

The British Museum has maintained a steady resistance to the stone’s return to Egypt. Legislation, including the British Museum Act 1963 (which prevents the British Museum from disposing of its holdings), covers its legal right to the stone. But there is now increasing pressure to return it to Egypt as a gesture of goodwill, recognition of the stone as Egypt’s cultural property and a symbol of a country that is increasingly reclaiming its heritage.

Some academics maintain that the stone should stay in London. There, they argue, more visitors will see it, and it takes pride of place among artefacts representing the collective efforts of humanity. They also highlight that the British Museum has kept it safe for two centuries and without British and French efforts, the stone’s significance would remain unknown.

For many years, one of the main academic arguments questioned the suitability of the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square, Cairo, as a home for the Rosetta Stone.

The case for repatriation

The argument that the stone is safer from a conservation perspective in the British Museum no longer carries the same weight in light of the new Grand Egyptian Museum, which now houses many objects formerly in Tahrir Square.

Ironically, the infrastructure of the British Museum is also in need of upgrading and refurbishment. The next few years will see this work commence in a radical overhaul called, appropriately, the “Rosetta Project”.

The British Museum positions itself as a repository of world culture, and there is certainly a case to be made for a more inclusive cultural heritage network. It can be argued that the Rosetta Stone is also part of British and French history, due to the decipherment success by Thomas Young and Jean-François Champollion, but in the end, it may come down to perceptions.

Inside the Great Court of the British Museum. A large, round, white central structure is covered in a glass roof, with people standing around in an expansive forecourt.
The Great Court of The British Museum. Alex Segre

To some Egyptians, the stone is a symbol of colonialism, and the British Museum’s retention of it signals that the western dominance of Egyptian archaeology is still present. The British Museum, understandably, does not wish to relinquish its star object, but the pressure may eventually make its position untenable.

As one of the world’s most high-profile museums, its decisions are in the spotlight and any change in its stance on the Rosetta Stone could lead to other institutions being approached about the repatriation of Egyptian collections.

This year, more than 2,500 archaeologists signed a petition to repatriate the stone and, in 2021, a YouGov poll on the wider issue of returning artefacts to their country of origin found 62% in favour.

Implications for worldwide heritage

The British Museum has stated that they have received no formal request for the return of the Rosetta Stone, but as the 1963 Act prevents its return, the most logical way forward is the establishment of a partnership with Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.

Tutankhamun's golden death mask, with blue detailing around the headdress.
Tutankhamun’s death mask will be on show at the Grand Egyptian Museum. Roland Unger, CC BY-NC-SA

George Osborne’s position as chair of the British Museum is that the strength of the collection is in the representation of common humanity, but that the museum is willing to enter into a dialogue to ensure a satisfactory outcome for all parties.

However, as ownership will still reside with the British Museum, advocates for the stone’s return may feel this does not go far enough. On the other hand, there is a concern about the potential for cultural regression if museums start to divide their collections, although the likelihood of having to empty stores is small.

The Rosetta Stone is a perfect example of the continuing biographies of objects. Its significance no longer rests only on its role in the decipherment of hieroglyphs, and 18th- to 19th-century relationships between Britain, France and Egypt. It has taken on new meaning, and its importance now is as a symbol of the decolonisation debate, and of Egypt itself.The Conversation

Claire Gilmour, PhD Candidate, Anthropology and Archaeology, University of Bristol

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

How satellites, radar and drones are tracking meteorites and aiding Earth’s asteroid defence

Hadrien Devillepoix, Curtin University

On July 31 2013 a constellation of US defence satellites saw a streak of light over South Australia as a rock from outer space burned through Earth’s atmosphere on its way to crash into the ground below.

The impact created an explosion equivalent to about 220 tonnes of TNT. More than 1,500km away, in Tasmania, the bang was heard by detectors normally used to listen for extremely low-frequency sounds from illegal tests of nuclear weapons.

These were two excellent indications that there should be a patch of ground covered in meteorites somewhere north of Port Augusta. But how could we track them down?

My colleagues and I who work on the Desert Fireball Network (DFN), which tracks incoming asteroids and the resulting meteorites, had a couple of ideas: weather radar and drones.

Eyes in space

Finding meteorites is not an easy task. There is a network of high-quality ground-based sensors called the Global Fireball Observatory, but it only covers about 1% of the planet.

The US satellite data published by NASA covers a much larger area than ground-based detectors, but it only picks up the biggest fireballs. What’s more, they don’t always give an accurate idea of the meteor’s trajectory.

So, to have any chance to find a meteorite from these data, you need a little outside help.

Weather radars

In 2019, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology started making its weather radar data openly available to researchers and the public. I saw this as an opportunity to complete the puzzle.

I combed through the record of events from the Desert Fireball Network and NASA, and cross-matched them with nearby weather radars. Then I looked for unusual radar signatures that could indicate the presence of falling meteorites.

An annoyed aerial photo showing the locations of the Woomera radar station and the falling meteorites.
The Woomera weather radar station captured reflections from the falling meteorites. Curtin University, Author provided

And bingo, the 2013 event was not too far from the Woomera radar station. The weather was clear, and the radar record showed some small reflections at about the right place and time.

Next, I had to use the weather data to figure out how the wind would have pushed the meteorites around on their way down to Earth.

If I got the calculations right, I would have a treasure map showing the location of a rich haul of meteorites. If I got them wrong, I would end up sending my team to wander around in the desert for two weeks for nothing.

The search

I gave what I hoped was an accurate treasure map to my colleague Andy Tomkins from Monash University. In September this year, he happened to be driving past the site on his way back from an expedition in the Nullarbor.

Thankfully, Andy found the first meteorite within 10 minutes of looking. In the following two hours, his team found nine more.

Photo of several people walking through a desert field looking at the ground.
A field team from Monash University searched for meteorites in the strewn field. Monash University, Author provided

The technique of finding meteorites with weather radars was pioneered by my colleague Marc Fries in the US. However, this is the first time it has been done outside the US NEXRAD radar network. (When it comes to monitoring airspace, the US has more powerful and more densely packed tech than anyone else.)

This first search confirmed there were lots of meteorites on the ground. But how were we going to find them all?

That’s where the drones come in. We used a method developed by my colleague Seamus Anderson to automatically detect meteorites from drone images.

In the end we collected 44 meteorites, weighing a bit over 4kg in total. Together they form what we call a “strewn field”.

An aerial view of a desert field with a black dot (a meteorite) highlighted by a yellow square.
A machine-learning algorithm identified meteorites from drone photos. Curtin Uni, Author provided

Strewn fields tell us a lot about how an asteroid fragments in our atmosphere.

That’s quite important to know, because the energy of these things is comparable to that of nuclear weapons. For example, the 17-metre asteroid that exploded over Chelyabinsk in Russia in 2013 produced an explosion 30 times the size of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.

So when the next big one is about to hit, it may be useful to predict how it will deposit its energy in our atmosphere.

With new telescopes and better technology, we are starting to see some asteroids before they hit Earth. We will see even more when projects such as the Vera Rubin Observatory and the Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS) are up and running.

These systems might give us as much as a few days’ notice that an asteroid is heading for Earth. This would be too late to make any effort to deflect it – but plenty of time for preparation and damage control on the ground.

The value of open data

This find was only made possible by the free availability of crucial data – and the people who made it available.

The US satellites that detected the fireball are presumably there to detect missile and rocket launches. However, somebody (I don’t know who) must have figured out how to publish some of the satellite data without giving away too much about their capabilities, and then lobbied hard to get the data released.

Likewise, the find would not have happened without the work of Joshua Soderholm at Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology, who worked to make low-level weather radar data openly accessible for other uses. Soderholm went to the trouble to make the radar data readily available and easy to use, which goes well beyond the vague formulations you can read at the bottom of scientific papers like “data available upon reasonable request”.

There is no shortage of fireballs to track down. Right now, we’re on the hunt for a meteorite that was spotted in space last weekend before blazing through the sky over Ontario, Canada.The Conversation

Hadrien Devillepoix, Researcher in Planetary Astronomy, Curtin University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Banksy in Ukraine: how his defiant new works offer hope

One of Banksy’s murals in Borodyanka. Sergey Dolzhenko
Rachel Kerr, King's College London

Art, in all its forms, has always been a powerful means of representing, resisting and remembering war. And the Russo-Ukrainian War is no different, with artists responding powerfully to Russian aggression through an explosion of artwork drawing attention to, and reinforcing, the resilience of Ukrainian people and culture.

A stream of artwork has been posted on Instagram and Twitter. Some of the artworks represent grief and trauma, whereas others reflect “the fire of hope and defiance that comes with such tragedy.”

International artists have also joined in the effort. On November 11, graffiti artist Banksy posted a picture to his Instagram of a gymnast doing a handstand, painted on the side of a building devastated by shelling in Borodyanka, Ukraine.

A ruined building with a Banksy mural on its walls, a ballerina doing a headstand on a pile of rubble beneath her
Banksy’s gymnast mural in Borodyanka. Sergey Dolzhenko

A few days later, Banksy confirmed that he was responsible for six other artworks in Kyiv and other cities across Ukraine, one of which appeared to take aim at Russian president Vladimir Putin, depicting him being thrown by a child in a judo match. It is not much of a stretch to interpret the child as a symbol of Ukrainian resistance.

Banksy’s other works are shown in a video posted to Instagram (above) accompanied by a soundtrack of women singing Ukrainian folk music. They show children playing on a seesaw made from part of a tank, a bombed out transport truck, a man taking a bath and a woman in a dressing gown donning a gas mask and holding a fire extinguisher.

Ukrainian messages of thanks and solidarity were posted to Banksy’s Instagram in response.

Russia’s war on culture

The destruction of culture and cultural heritage has been among the many alleged crimes committed by Russia in Ukraine. In July 2022, Unesco reported damage to over 164 cultural sites including religious sites, museums, historic buildings, buildings dedicated to cultural activities, monuments and libraries.

As with so many aspects of the war, this reverberates with the Yugoslav War, where the searing image of the destruction of the national library in Sarajevo and its two million books and artefacts in August 1992 was one of the most iconic of the war.

An early cultural casualty in Ukraine was the Babyn Yar memorial park in Kyiv, believed to have been directly targeted by Russian forces as part of an erasure of Ukrainian history and culture.

In response, Unesco committed to the protection of cultural property as a priority. That commitment was based on the conviction that: “Culture is an essential public good for society, and access to cultural life is a basic universal human right.”

While art alone cannot change the dynamics or the course of the war in Ukraine, it can play an important role in reinforcing and demonstrating the resilience of cultural life. Whether or not it can also play a role in building peace and fostering reconciliation depends on its protection.

Unesco responds to threats to Ukrainian culture

In September, Unesco announced a joint initiative with the Ukrainian NGO Museum of Contemporary Art “to encourage the continuation of artistic creation and access to cultural life in Ukraine”.

The fund will initially disburse a total of US$100,000 (£84,000) from the Unesco Heritage Emergency Fund to support seven projects, with ten more to follow. The projects were selected from an open call and include residencies and support for displaced Ukrainian artists in Dnipro and Kharkiv.

Unesco described their support of Ukrainian artists as “vital for preserving artistic expression as a basis for social cohesion, community resilience, and our common goal – fighting for freedom and democratic values”.

What role does art play in war?

All of this points to important questions about the role of art and the responsibility of artists in times of war, artistic representation of war and its horrors, art and the politics of resistance and the potential role of art in building peace and fostering reconciliation.

As historian Joanna Bourke observed in her book War and Art, art is intrinsically political, whether deliberately so or not. Artists make choices about how they represent war, often invoking “both the bitterness and the vulnerability of modern war”.

Banksy’s artwork in Ukraine draws our eye to the devastation wrought by the Russian invasion. By being painted on bombed out buildings, the images reflect how the experience of war disrupt the everyday, juxtaposing the mundane with the extraordinary – a woman in curlers and a dressing gown also wears a gas mask, children play on a tank trap seesaw.

A family looks at mural of a gymnast twirling a ribbon on the wall of a bombed building, girl mirrors the gymnast's pose
Another of Banksy’s murals in Borodyanka, once again using the imagery of a gymnast. Sergey Dolzhenko

Banksy’s intervention was warmly welcomed by Ukrainians, “hailed as a symbol of their country’s invincibility” as part of a wider Ukrainian effort to leverage art as a powerful site of resistance and demonstration of resilience.

The extent to which art might be able to contribute to peace and reconciliation is a question for later on. It seems quite far removed from the grief, anger and defiance evident in much of the artwork created to date.

For now, as the response to Banksy’s artworks demonstrates, art in Ukraine serves as a site of expression, of solidarity and a symbol of resistance. As the Ukrainian government expressed, such works are not only “about blood, death, and destruction … but also – about love, support, and hope”.The Conversation

Rachel Kerr, Professor of War and Society, King's College London

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

The concept of class is often avoided in public debate, but it’s essential for understanding inequality

Martin Bergsma/Shutterstock
Jessica Gerrard, The University of Melbourne and Steven Threadgold, University of Newcastle

In Australian news, opinion and popular culture, the figures of the hipster and the bogan are everywhere. These figures are proxies for cultural, commercial and moral aspects of class, signalling differences in fashion, accents and tastes. Perhaps one of the most recognisable examples is the popular television series, Upper Middle Bogan.

So potent and provocative are these figures in Australian popular culture, that in our experience of talking about class in the media earlier this year, following the release of our book Class in Australia, interviewers most often wanted to talk about hipsters and bogans.

These figures are important for understanding class in Australia, including how moralised classed judgements about “good” versus “trashy” culture are made. But to talk about class in Australia involves talking about material inequality, work conditions, and the social, economic and political relations that produce wealth and poverty.

In a settler colony like Australia, it also involves addressing how class relations have been built on the foundations of colonialism and the exclusion and exploitation of Indigenous people, as Eualeyai/Kamilaroi academic, lawyer, filmmaker and advocate Larissa Behrendt noted in her contribution to our book.

The ongoing crisis of COVID-19 has highlighted the need to acknowledge the drastically different experiences of the global pandemic, depending on the kind of work you do. Front-line “essential” workers, often precariously employed, many of whom are in working-class jobs, have fundamentally different experiences of risk and exposure than white-collar workers able to work from home.

COVID-19 has also exposed the complex and fragile global flows of migrant agricultural workers, whose labour Australians rely upon to put food on the table, and whose lives were put in limbo.

Eight-hour day procession, Melbourne, April 1914. Public domain

The rhetoric of class

Class has a unique place in Australian public life. At times it looms large, acting as an organising frame to declare interests and political sentiments. In Australia, the concept of “class” has a cultural history with deep connections to unionism and the struggle for workers’ rights, including, for instance, the campaign for the eight-hour day.

Yet often class is obscured. It is markedly absent from contemporary public and political debates on poverty, inequality, disadvantage and wealth. These other terms appear to roll off the political tongue with ease. They lend themselves to policy discourse and political rhetoric where structural inequalities are broken down into a series of “risk factors” attributed to individuals.

When the concept of class is mentioned, it is often presented in an inverted top-down manner. Some of Australia’s most privileged and powerful people routinely use anti-“elite” rhetoric. The notion of elitism is used to stereotype and denigrate so-called inner-city latte sippers. Their education and “progressive” political values are cited as evidence that they fail to grasp the needs and beliefs of “ordinary” people, exemplified by the “quiet” Aussie “battler”.

The symbols of class are invoked when our highly paid politicians cosplay as working class, dressing in high-vis and helmets, wearing army fatigues, or getting on tractors when visiting farms. These performances are attempts to connect the political class with the everyday worker, while at the same time glossing over social and employment inequalities.

Whenever arguments about income or economic redistribution arise, we hear immediate invocations of a “class war”. For instance, arguing in favour of lowering the minimum wage in 2012, Australian mining magnate Gina Rinehart implored Australians to

get through the class warfare smokescreen […] if you’re jealous of those with more money, don’t just sit there and complain; do something to make more money yourself – spend less time drinking, or smoking and socialising, and more time working.

It seems that in Australia, as elsewhere, as US-based billionaire investor Warren Buffett quipped:

There’s class warfare all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.

What is class in Australia?

The term “class” – as distinct from related concepts like socio-economic status, inequality or disadvantage – remains useful because it refers to the cultural, social, economic and employment relations that have produced widening inequality. It means acknowledging that some must sell their labour for wages, while others generate wealth from the capital produced from that labour.

At the same time, any genuine understanding of class in Australia requires qualifications. Class also refers to deep cultural and social practices which shape our identities, our communities and ways of being.

Class is a term that is hotly contested. Many have revisited the term, considering it in relation to, for instance, Indigenous experiences, gender and women’s work, and questions of race and racism. Not all distinctive experiences of difference, disadvantage and inequality – gender, race, Indigeneity, sexuality, ability, age for instance – represent equivalences that can be subsumed into class.

For instance, in our book, Rose Butler, Christina Ho and Eve Vincent discuss how ethnicity complicates straightforward understandings of class when it comes to education. Their research shows that many white parents denigrate Asian-Australian parents who invest in tutoring for their children, believing that it is “unfair” and does not allow kids to be kids.

Behrendt, too, reflects on how Indigenous people have been left out of debates about class, as the concept itself was imported from Europe and, in many colonial settler histories, Indigenous people were not even treated as people. These examples and others in the book highlight the need for continual reflection on how different contours of inequality interact with class.

Class is often omitted from public debate because it reveals the systemic nature of inequality and poverty. It does not fit with the political narrative that society is meritocratic. The realities of class-based inequity call into question the idea that if you work hard and make the right choices, you can rise to the top.

The problem is that when wealth, inequality and success are understood to be the result of individual choices, the social relationships and structures that create such inequalities are hidden from view. This kind of thinking gives rise to individualised responses to inequality, or a presumption that inequality might be the result of personal characteristics or “failings”.

It is this kind of thinking that enables Bernard Salt to declare that young people might be able to buy a house if they just didn’t eat avocado toast, or former prime minister Scott Morrison to suggest that if you want to earn more all you need to do is work harder. Such comments demonstrate the significant and increasing discrepancy between political rhetoric and the reality of inequalities.

A richly informed understanding of class can play a powerful role in grasping how unequal social and economic experiences are articulated through relations of property, labour, capital and value in capitalist societies.

To put it plainly, class allows us to understand inequalities not as personal failings, but as experiences that are produced through social and economic relations. Using the term class makes inequality a public issue anchored in material structures and socio-cultural institutions. This makes class a necessary concept for understanding how Australian society functions, how the powerful maintain their interests, and how social and cultural institutions work to reproduce inequalities.The Conversation

Jessica Gerrard, Associate Professor, The University of Melbourne and Steven Threadgold, Associate Professor, Sociology, University of Newcastle

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

book of the month: november 2022 - the harp in the south by ruth park

The Harp in the South is the debut novel by Australian author Ruth Park. Published in 1948, it portrays the life of a Catholic Irish Australian family living in the Sydney suburb of Surry Hills, which was at that time an inner city slum.

The Harp in the South was published, initially, in the Sydney Morning Herald in twelve daily instalments, beginning on 4 January 1947, after winning a competition run by that newspaper. The prize was £2,000, and there were 175 entires.

It was controversial, with readers writing to the newspaper, on the basis of the synopsis, even before the serialisation started. Delia Falconer writes that The Herald published "forty-three responses, a symposium, and a daily tally of pro and con letters (sixty-eight for; fifty-four against)". It was published in book form in 1948 by Angus & Robertson, who baulked at the novel but "had to honour a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ to publish the winner".

It has been translated into 37 languages and never been out of print. Newly married Park and Niland did live for a time in a Sydney slum located in the rough inner-city suburb of Surry Hills and vouched for the novel's accuracy. Sydney slum life recurs in her novel for children, Playing Beatie Bow (1980).

Rosina Ruth Lucia Park AM (24 August 1917 – 14 December 2010) was a New Zealand–born Australian author. Her best known works are the novels The Harp in the South (1948) and Playing Beatie Bow (1980), and the children's radio serial The Muddle-Headed Wombat (1951–1970), which also spawned a book series (1962–1982).

Park built on her initial success with the 1949 publication of a follow-up novel titled the Poor Man's Orange. During the 1950s, despite the demands of raising a family, she wrote tirelessly. According to a 2010 tribute article printed in The Sydney Morning Herald and written by her literary agent Tim Curnow, she produced more than 5,000 radio scripts alone during this decade, as well as contributing numerous articles to newspapers and magazines and penning weightier works of fiction.

She subsequently wrote Missus (1985), a prequel to The Harp in the South, among other novels, and created scripts for film and television. Her autobiographies, A Fence Around the Cuckoo (1992) and Fishing in the Styx (1993), deal with her life in New Zealand and Australia respectively. She also penned a novel set in New Zealand, One-a-pecker, Two-a-pecker (1957), about gold mining in Otago. (It was later renamed The Frost and The Fire.)

Park and Niland had five children, of whom the youngest, twin daughters Kilmeny and Deborah, went on to become book illustrators. (Park was devastated when Niland died in Sydney at the age of 49 from a heart ailment.

Park never remarried. Between 1946 and 2004, she received numerous awards for her contributions to literature in both Australia and internationally. She was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1987.

From 1974 to 1981 Park dwelt on Norfolk Island, where she was the co-owner of a shop selling books and gifts. Her later years, however, were spent living in the Sydney harbourside suburb of Mosman. She died in her sleep on 14 December 2010, at the age of 93.

Readers who visit the Community News page may remember this Item from August 2021:

Ruth Park Account Of A Storm At Collaroy When Living At ‘Wits End’ 

Past Profile of the Week and former Warriewood SLSC member Norman Godden writes from New Zealand last week to remind us of the account of Ruth Park of a storm she witnessed at Collaroy Beach in 1945.

Norman says;

‘’I read the amazingly researched article on Narrabeen, Collaroy and Narrabeen Lakes. What was really interesting was the information on the storms over the years which washed away homes along Collaroy Beach. I was aged 8 in 1945 when my Dad took me to Collaroy to have a look at the major destruction along the beach, resulting from an huge storm. The damage was far worse than resulted from later storms, including those which wrecked homes at Fisherman’s Beach at Collaroy. Whole houses had simply disappeared and those left were completely wrecked, some a pile of debris and others skeletons of their former selves. The beach was covered with stoves, toilets, kitchenware, tiles and so on. In those days, the beach was still covered with tank traps, many weighing tons having been moved by the power of the storm.

What might interest you is that two of Australia’s greatest authors, Ruth Park and D’Arcy Niland had to flee the storm from the boarding house “Wits End” where they were living with their young baby.  Like most budding authors, they were as poor as Church Mice, living from hand to mouth. The description of that night, as in her autobiography “Fishing in the Styx” (pages 108-112), is terrifying. They ended up standing on Pittwater Road with other refugees from the houses, with some blankets around them which they managed to salvage. 

Ruth Park went on to publish 50 books including “Harp in the South” and “Dear Hearts and Gentle People”, and D’arcy Niland many, including the famous “The Shiralee” and “Call me when the Cross Turns Over”. In later years Ruth lived at Balgowlah, quite near us.’’

Thank you for your input sir!

For those interested, in June 2016 John Illingsworth placed these words of Ruth’s in a short film he made about Narrabeen – Collaroy Coastal Erosion, available at and embedded below: 

Photos: Ruth Park holding her cat outside her home in Balgowlah, 10 December 1962
By John Aloysius Mulligan courtesy National Library of Australia [nla.pic-an24574247] and cover of “Fishing in the Styx”

The world at your finger tips: Online

With current advice to stay at home and self-isolate, when you come in out of the garden, have had your fill of watching movies and want to explore something new, there's a whole world of books you can download, films you can watch and art galleries you can stroll through - all from at home and via the internet. This week a few suggestions of some of the resources available for you to explore and enjoy. For those who have a passion for Art - this month's Artist of the Month is the Online Australian Art Galleries and State Libraries where you can see great works of art from all over the world  and here - both older works and contemporary works.

Also remember the Project Gutenberg Australia - link here- has heaps of great books, not just focused on Australian subjects but fiction works by popular authors as well. Well worth a look at.

Short Stories for Teenagers you can read for free online

StoryStar is an online resource where you can access and read short stories for teenagers


Storystar is a totally FREE short stories site featuring some of the best short stories online, written by/for kids, teens, and adults of all ages around the world, where short story writers are the stars, and everyone is free to shine! Storystar is dedicated to providing a free place where everyone can share their stories. Stories can entertain us, enlighten us, and change us. Our lives are full of stories; stories of joy and sorrow, triumph and tragedy, success and failure. The stories of our lives matter. Share them. Sharing stories with each other can bring us closer together and help us get to know one another better. Please invite your friends and family to visit Storystar to read, rate and share all the short stories that have been published here, and to tell their stories too.

StoryStar headquarters are located on the central Oregon coast.

NFSA - National Film and Sound Archive of Australia

The doors may be temporarily closed but when it comes to the NFSA, we are always open online. We have content for Kids, Animal Lovers, Music fans, Film buffs & lots more.

You can explore what’s available online at the NFSA, see more in the link below.

NLA Ebooks - Free To Download

The National Library of Australia provides access to thousands of ebooks through its website, catalogue and eResources service. These include our own publications and digitised historical books from our collections as well as subscriptions to collections such as Chinese eResources, Early English Books Online and Ebsco ebooks.

What are ebooks?
Ebooks are books published in an electronic format. They can be read by using a personal computer or an ebook reader.

This guide will help you find and view different types of ebooks in the National Library collections.

Peruse the NLA's online ebooks, ready to download - HERE

The Internet Archive and Digital Library

The Internet Archive is an American digital library with the stated mission of "universal access to all knowledge." It provides free public access to collections of digitised materials, including websites, software applications/games, music, movies, videos, moving images, and millions of public-domain books. There's lots of Australian materials amongst the millions of works on offer.


Avalon Youth Hub: More Meditation Spots

Due to popular demand our meditation evenings have EXPANDED. Two sessions will now be run every Wednesday evening at the Hub. Both sessions will be facilitated by Merryn at Soul Safaris.

6-7pm - 12 - 15 year olds welcome
7-8pm - 16 - 25 year olds welcome

No experience needed. Learn and develop your mindfulness and practice meditation in a group setting.

For all enquires, message us via facebook or email

BIG THANKS The Burdekin Association for funding these sessions!

Green Team Beach Cleans 

Hosted by The Green Team
It has been estimated that we will have more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050...These beach cleans are aimed at reducing the vast amounts of plastic from entering our oceans before they harm marine life. 

Anyone and everyone is welcome! If you would like to come along, please bring a bucket, gloves and hat. Kids of all ages are also welcome! 

We will meet in front of the surf club. 
Hope to see you there!

The Green Team is a Youth-run, volunteer-based environment initiative from Avalon, Sydney. Keeping our area green and clean.

 The Project Gutenberg Library of Australiana

Australian writers, works about Australia and works which may be of interest to Australians.This Australiana page boasts many ebooks by Australian writers, or books about Australia. There is a diverse range; from the journals of the land and sea explorers; to the early accounts of white settlement in Australia; to the fiction of 'Banjo' Paterson, Henry Lawson and many other Australian writers.

The list of titles form part of the huge collection of ebooks freely downloadable from Project Gutenberg Australia. Follow the links to read more about the authors and titles and to read and/or download the ebooks. 

Profile: Ingleside Riders Group

Ingleside Riders Group Inc. (IRG) is a not for profit incorporated association and is run solely by volunteers. It was formed in 2003 and provides a facility known as “Ingleside Equestrian Park” which is approximately 9 acres of land between Wattle St and McLean St, Ingleside. IRG has a licence agreement with the Minister of Education to use this land. This facility is very valuable as it is the only designated area solely for equestrian use in the Pittwater District.  IRG promotes equal rights and the respect of one another and our list of rules that all members must sign reflect this.


Research shows that one in five Australian children aged 8 to 17 has been the target of cyberbullying in the past year. The Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner can help you make a complaint, find someone to talk to and provide advice and strategies for dealing with these issues.

Make a Complaint 

The Enhancing Online Safety for Children Act 2015 gives the power to provide assistance in relation to serious cyberbullying material. That is, material that is directed at a particular child with the intention to seriously embarrass, harass, threaten or humiliate.


Before you make a complaint you need to have:

  • copies of the cyberbullying material to upload (eg screenshots or photos)
  • reported the material to the social media service (if possible) at least 48 hours ago
  • at hand as much information as possible about where the material is located
  • 15-20 minutes to complete the form


Our mission

The Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner is Australia's leader in online safety. The Office is committed to helping young people have safe, positive experiences online and encouraging behavioural change, where a generation of Australian children act responsibly online—just as they would offline.

We provide online safety education for Australian children and young people, a complaints service for young Australians who experience serious cyberbullying, and address illegal online content through the Online Content Scheme.

Our goal is to empower all Australians to explore the online world—safely.


The Green Team

This Youth-run, volunteer-based environment initiative has been attracting high praise from the founders of Living Ocean as much as other local environment groups recently. 
Creating Beach Cleans events, starting their own, sustainability days - ‘action speaks louder than words’ ethos is at the core of this group. 

National Training Complaints Hotline – 13 38 73

The National Training Complaints Hotline is accessible on 13 38 73 (Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm nationally) or via email at

Sync Your Breathing with this - to help you Relax

Send In Your Stuff

Pittwater Online News is not only For and About you, it is also BY you.  
We will not publish swearing or the gossip about others. BUT: If you have a poem, story or something you want to see addressed, let us know or send to:

All Are Welcome, All Belong!

Youth Source: Northern Sydney Region

A directory of services and resources relevant to young people and those who work, play and live alongside them.

The YouthSource directory has listings from the following types of service providers: Aboriginal, Accommodation, Alcohol & Other Drugs, Community Service, Counselling, Disability, Education & Training, Emergency Information, Employment, Financial, Gambling,  General Health & Wellbeing, Government Agency, Hospital & GP, Legal & Justice, Library, Mental Health, Multicultural, Nutrition & Eating Disorders, Parenting, Relationships, Sexual Health, University, Youth Centre

Fined Out: Practical guide for people having problems with fines

Legal Aid NSW has just published an updated version of its 'Fined Out' booklet, produced in collaboration with Inner City Legal Centre and Redfern Legal Centre.

Fined Out is a practical guide to the NSW fines system. It provides information about how to deal with fines and contact information for services that can help people with their fines.

A fine is a financial penalty for breaking the law. The Fines Act 1996 (NSW) and Regulations sets out the rules about fines.

The 5th edition of 'Fined Out' includes information on the different types of fines and chapters on the various options to deal with fines at different stages of the fine lifecycle, including court options and pathways to seek a review, a 50% reduction, a write-off, plan, or a Work and Development Order (WDO).

The resource features links to self-help legal tools for people with NSW fines, traffic offence fines and court attendance notices (CANs) and also explains the role of Revenue NSW in administering and enforcing fines.

Other sections of the booklet include information specific to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, young people and driving offences, as well as a series of template letters to assist people to self-advocate.

Hard copies will soon be available to be ordered online through the Publications tab on the Legal Aid NSW website.

Hard copies will also be made available in all public and prison libraries throughout NSW.

Read the resource online, or download the PDF.

Apprenticeships and traineeships info

Are you going to leave school this year?
Looking for an apprenticeship or traineeship to get you started?
This website, Training Services NSW, has stacks of info for you;

It lists the group training organisations (GTOs) that are currently registered in NSW under the Apprenticeship and Traineeship Act 2001. These GTOs have been audited by independent auditors and are compliant with the National Standards for Group Training Organisations.

If you are interested in using the services of a registered GTO, please contact any of the organisations listed here:

There are also some great websites, like 1300apprentice, which list what kind of apprenticeships and traineeships they can guide you to securing as well as listing work available right now.

Profile Bayview Yacht Racing Association (BYRA)
1842 Pittwater Rd, Bayview

BYRA has a passion for sharing the great waters of Pittwater and a love of sailing with everyone aged 8 to 80 or over!

 headspace Brookvale

headspace Brookvale provides services to young people aged 12-25. If you are a young person looking for health advice, support and/or information,headspace Brookvale can help you with:

• Mental health • Physical/sexual health • Alcohol and other drug services • Education and employment services

If you ever feel that you are:

• Alone and confused • Down, depressed or anxious • Worried about your use of alcohol and/or other drugs • Not coping at home, school or work • Being bullied, hurt or harassed • Wanting to hurt yourself • Concerned about your sexual health • Struggling with housing or accommodation • Having relationship problems • Finding it hard to get a job

Or if you just need someone to talk to… headspace Brookvale can help! The best part is our service is free, confidential and youth friendly.

headspace Brookvale is open from Monday to Friday 9:00am-5:30pm so if you want to talk or make an appointment give us a call on (02) 9937 6500. If you're not feeling up to contacting us yourself, feel free to ask your family, friend, teacher, doctor or someone close to you to make a referral on your behalf.

When you first come to headspace Brookvale you will be greeted by one of our friendly staff. You will then talk with a member of our headspace Brookvale Youth Access Team. The headspace Brookvale Youth Access Team consists of three workers, who will work with you around whatever problems you are facing. Depending on what's happening for you, you may meet with your Youth Access Worker a number of times or you may be referred on to a more appropriate service provider.

A number of service providers are operating out of headspace Brookvale including Psychologists, Drug & Alcohol Workers, Sexual Health Workers, Employment Services and more! If we can't find a service operating withinheadspace Brookvale that best suits you, the Youth Access Team can also refer you to other services in the Sydney area.

eheadspace provides online and telephone support for young people aged 12-25. It is a confidential, free, secure space where you can chat, email or talk on the phone to qualified youth mental health professionals.

Click here to go to eheadspace

For urgent mental health assistance or if you are in a crisis please call the Northern Sydney 24 hour Mental Health Access Line on 1800 011 511

Need Help Right NOW??

kids help line: 1800 55 1800 -

lifeline australia - 13 11 14 -

headspace Brookvale is located at Level 2 Brookvale House, 1A Cross Street Brookvale NSW 2100 (Old Medical Centre at Warringah Mall). We are nearby Brookvale Westfield's bus stop on Pittwater road, and have plenty of parking under the building opposite Bunnings. More at:

Profile: Avalon Soccer Club
Avalon Soccer Club is an amateur club situated at the northern end of Sydney’s Northern Beaches. As a club we pride ourselves on our friendly, family club environment. The club is comprised of over a thousand players aged from 5 to 70 who enjoy playing the beautiful game at a variety of levels and is entirely run by a group of dedicated volunteers. 
Profile: Pittwater Baseball Club

Their Mission: Share a community spirit through the joy of our children engaging in baseball.

Year 13

Year13 is an online resource for post school options that specialises in providing information and services on Apprenticeships, Gap Year Programs, Job Vacancies, Studying, Money Advice, Internships and the fun of life after school. Partnering with leading companies across Australia Year13 helps facilitate positive choices for young Australians when finishing school.

Driver Knowledge Test (DKT) Practice run Online

Did you know you can do a practice run of the DKT online on the RMS site? - check out the base of this page, and the rest on the webpage, it's loaded with information for you!

The DKT Practice test is designed to help you become familiar with the test, and decide if you’re ready to attempt the test for real.  Experienced drivers can also take the practice test to check their knowledge of the road rules. Unlike the real test, the practice DKT allows you to finish all 45 questions, regardless of how many you get wrong. At the end of the practice test, you’ll be advised whether you passed or failed.

NCYLC is a community legal centre dedicated to providing advice to children and young people. NCYLC has developed a Cyber Project called Lawmail, which allows young people to easily access free legal advice from anywhere in Australia, at any time.

NCYLC was set up to ensure children’s rights are not marginalised or ignored. NCYLC helps children across Australia with their problems, including abuse and neglect. The AGD, UNSW, KWM, Telstra and ASIC collaborate by providing financial, in-kind and/or pro bono volunteer resources to NCYLC to operate Lawmail and/or Lawstuff.

Kids Helpline

If you’re aged 5-25 the Kids Helpline provides free and confidential online and phone counselling 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 55 1800. You can chat with us about anything… What’s going on at home, stuff with friends. Something at school or feeling sad, angry or worried. You don’t have to tell us your name if you don’t want to.

You can Webchat, email or phone. Always remember - Everyone deserves to be safe and happy. You’re important and we are here to help you. Visit: