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The School

Illawarra Multicultural Services employ specialised staff to provide a range of programs and projects to meet the needs of new arrivals and culturally and linguistically diverse individuals, families and communities who are socially and/or financially disadvantaged with low English language proficiency.

The Project


Where: Town Hall, Wollongong NSW. 
When: Wednesday, 21 June 2017. 9:00AM-5:00PM - Readings from 11:30AM-12:00PM

Red Room Poetry have partnered with Illawarra Multicultural Services to celebrate REFUGEE WEEK 2017.

Join 120 local primary and high secondary school students from refugee backgrounds as they share poems inspired by their most treasured objects. Poems from the Red Room Poetry, Poetry Object workshops at Wollongong West PS, Wollongong PS, Keira HS and Wollongong HS will be installed at Town Hall, Wollongong. 

Come along to hear the students read their original poems and to see the poetic installation for Refugee Week 2017.

For more information, email Emily at Illawarra Multicultural Services:

The Poet

Kirli Saunders

Kirli Saunders is a proud Gunai woman with ties to the Yuin, Gundungurra, Gadigal and Biripi people. Kirli is the Manager of Poetic Learning and Aboriginal Cultural Liaison at Red Room Poetry. She was awarded ‘Worker of the Year 2017’ at the NAIDOC awards in the Illawarra/ Shoalhaven region and has been nominated for a National NAIDOC award in 2018. Kirli founded the Poetry in First Languages project. Her first children’s picture book The Incredible Freedom Machines, illustrated by Matt Ottley was selected for Bologna Book Fair and is published internationally. Her second picture book Our Dreaming will be released by Scholastic in July 2019, Happy Ever After will follow in February 2020. Kirli’s First Poetry Collection, Kindred is to be released by Magabala in 2019, it was Highly Commended in the 2018 Black&Write! prize. Kirli’s poem ‘A Dance of Hands’ was Runner-up in the Nakata Brophy Prize. Kirli’s poetry has been published by Cordite and Overland and has embedded in infrastructure at Darling Harbour and the Royal Botanical Gardens, Melbourne. In 2018, Kirli will be Writer in Residence at Bundanon Trust, Q Station and The Literature Centre, Fremantle for ‘The Sound of Picture Books’.