TAS Afghani Community Profile
The current Afghani Community Leader in Launceston, Mr. Yousef Mohammadi gave an insight on the cultural context of Afghani people and life experiences as migrants in Tasmania, during a recent interview with Irene Mukiira, TTMHN. He says that Afghani people are community oriented, with hospitality and food being a major thing for community members. He says, ” Afghani people are rich in welcoming and food”. They like to participate in food festivals and cultural functions like new year celebrations where enjoy entertainments that remind them of cultures from their country of origin.
The common challenges they have faced in Tasmania include limited English language skills, lack of jobs as a result of language barriers and lack of accessibility to a community hall where they can hold their regular forums. Most families are moving to mainland due to these challenges, and there are only about 30 families left here. Mr. Yousef says getting support to acquire a Community Centre would improve the sense of belonging, where community members can connect and hold programs that help alleviate mental heath issues associated with loneliness and isolation.
Mr. Yousef says the media portrays a different picture of Afghanistan, of ruthlessness and aggression, which is not a true representation of Afghani community. He says, “the real Afghani people like to share their food, culture and heritage….. they are hospitable people”.
To learn more about Afghani culture and other cultures here in Tasmania, visit the SBS Cultural Atlas website.