MUSICAL MONDAY: You’re the Voice…

Colour me naive and call me “Pollyanna” but I still don’t understand why people don’t  stand together to bring about change for the betterment of all.  Way back “before Adam was a boy” John Farnham described my feelings, sentiments and view perfectly with  “The Voice” and I’ll never stop speaking my truth, and describing my views, despite all attempts to silence. Suspect it’s in my DNA – come in Susan   😆

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We have The chance to turn the pages over
We can write what we want to write
We gotta make ends meet, before we get much older

We’re all someone’s daughter
We’re all someone’s son
How long can we look at each other
Down the barrel of a gun?

Chorus:
You’re the voice, try and understand it
Make a noise and make it clear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!
We’re not gonna sit in silence
We’re not gonna live with fear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!

This time
We know we all stand together
With the power to be powerful
Believing, we can make it better

Oooooooh,
We’re all someone’s daughter
We’re all someone’s son
How long can we look at each other
Down the barrel of a gun?…

You’re the voice, try and understand it
Make a noise and make it clear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!
We’re not gonna sit in silence
We’re not gonna live with fear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!

Ooooooh
We’re all someone’s daughter
We’re all someone’s son
How long can we look at each other
Down the barrel of a gun?…

You’re the voice, try and understand it
Make a noise and make it clear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!
We’re not gonna sit in silence
We’re not gonna live with fear
Oh-o-o-o, whoa-o-o-o!

Freedom of Speech. Voltaire

Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

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Quotable Quote: True compassion…

Martin-Luther-King-Jr-9365086-2-402

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:

“True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice that produces beggars needs restructuring.

-Martin Luther King, Jr., civil-rights leader (1929-1968)”

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Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: Social Media… a force for good

THINKING - makes me smileI was an annoying child always asking “WHY???” … and nothing has changed.  I still drive people crazy with the constant questioning and, as this blog is a legacy for my descendants I’ve  started up a “Thoughtful Thursday” posts to share some of the thoughts which  have en-gaged me. The events of the past 48 hours have focussed my attention on our use of computers and, as with all technology, it has its positive and negative aspects.

Social Media tends to get a bad rap with a focus on trolls, cyber-bullying, mis-use by paedophiles etc.  However, it can be a “force for good”.

My daughter-in-love, Sylvia, posted a most poignant FaceBook message alerting all to the plight of Anthony Fox, a young husband and father of two, who had suffered a massive stroke and spent 6 months in Royal Adelaide Hospital and Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre, South Australia.  Anthony is now ready to be discharged but is unable return to his home and family because there is no funding for a carer to attend a couple of hours a day to assist with his basic needs.

Anthony Fox

I commented and shared the message… other FaceBook friends did the same as did many of their friends.  The last I saw, about 5,000 people had shared this message with their FaceBook friends.  Within 24 hours the announcement came over Adelaide’s Channel 7 news that the South Australian Government has promised to give him assistance to get back home to his family. Click HERE to read the news report and watch the Video.

Anthony Fox and son

It gave a warm fuzzy feeling to all who championed Anthony’s cause and no doubt others can give similar examples.  If so, I’d love for you to share your experiences.

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computer-readingThe second example, within 48 hours, happened just a few hours ago when a FaceBook friend posted advice on how to adjust “privacy settings” to stop the Apps, installed by other FaceBook friends, from accessing YOUR private informa-tion. So easy… so simple to do… you just need to know about it. So that very useful message is now doing the rounds too.  Just click HERE to discover how you too can guard against an “App attack.”   🙂

Bless those who use Social Media for the good of others.

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RESOURCES:
http://au.news.yahoo.com/sa/latest/a/-/newshome/16532028/stroke-victim-to-be-reunited-with-family/

http://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2013/04/03/how-to-stop-your-friends-facebook-apps-from-accessing-your-private-information/

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Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

International Women’s Day… what’s it all about?

international.womens.day.logo.2After many decades of  celebrating International Women’s Day, and fully understanding its purpose and ethos, I decided it well past time to actually look closely at its origins.

International Women’s Day (IWD), held on March 8th across the world, is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women in the past, present and future. It is an occasion for looking back on past struggles and accomplishments, and more importantly, for looking ahead to the untapped potential and opportunities that await future generations of women.

Although much progress has been made to protect and promote women’s rights, in recent times, nowhere in the world can women claim to have all the same rights and opportunities as men. According to the United Nations (UN) the majority of the world’s 1.3 billion absolute poor are women and, on average, women receive between 30 and 40 percent less pay than men earn for the same work. Women also continue to be victims of violence, with rape and domestic violence listed as significant causes of disability and death among women worldwide.

Women's Day, Clara_Zetkin_Denkmal_Dresden

In 1910, Clara Zetkin, the leader of the Women’s Office for the Social Democratic Party in Germany tabled the idea of an International Women’s Day at the second International Conference of Working Women in Copenhagen. The proposal received unanimous assent from over one hundred women representing seventeen countries. Meetings and protests were held across Europe with the largest street demonstration attracting 30,000 women. The day sparked great public debate, and advocates drew attention to the absolute necessity of extending the right to vote to women to make parliament more democratic.

Women's votes

The very first International Women’s day was held the following year on March 19th. The March 19 date was chosen because it commemorated the day that the Prussian king promised to introduce votes for women in 1848. The promise gave hope for equality but it was a promise that he failed to keep. The inaugural event, which included rallies and organized meetings, was a big success in countries such as Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. In 1913, IWD was transferred to March 8th and has been held on this day ever since.

womens_history

The UN drew global attention to women’s concerns in 1975 by calling for an International Women’s Year and  held its first official celebrations in Mexico City. Two years later, in December 1977, the General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace inviting Member States to proclaim a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace – International Women’s Day – to be observed on any day of the year in accordance with their historical and national traditions.

UNWOMEN.lofo

Since then, the United Nations Organisation has observed March 8th as International Women’s Day The UN considers the purpose of this day is to recognise the fact that securing peace and social progress, and the full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms, require the active participation, equality and development of women and to acknowledge the contribution of women in achieving these goals.

women_india

Since those early years, International Women’s Day has assumed a new global dimension for women in developed and developing countries alike. The growing international women’s movement, which has been strengthened by four global United Nation’s women’s conferences, has helped make the commemoration a rallying point to build support for women’s rights and participation in the political and economic arenas. Increasingly, International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.

Indira Ghandi.

For the women of the world, the symbolism of International Women’s Day has a wider meaning. It is an occasion to review how far women have come in their struggle for equality, peace and development. It is also an opportunity to unite, network and mobilise for meaningful change.

women.worldwide

For newspaper articles which discuss the continuing challenges facing women, in 2013, please click on the following links:
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/international-womens-day-has-yet-to-achieve-its-purpose-20130305-2fiv3.html

http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/1349889/international-womens-day-is-to-recognise-plight-says-ballarat-scientist/?cs=12

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jill-van-den-brule/this-international-womens_3_b_2828951.html

http://www.humanrights.gov.au/about/media/news/2013/20_13.html

http://www.smh.com.au/comment/this-womens-day-remember-fallen-in-domestic-wars-20130307-2fo1v.html

RESOURCES & FURTHER INFORMATION:
http://www.isis.aust.com/iwd/stevens/origins.htm
http://www.isis.aust.com/iwd/stevens/firstiwd.htm
http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/un/international-womens-day

Since 1999 International Men’s Year is celebrated on 19 November each year.

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Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

Reconciling Black & White Australia

Eliza Jane (Rowen) Murray - (c) C.Crout-Habel

Eliza Jane (Rowen) Murray – (c) C.Crout-Habel

I well remember the sob in mum’s voice as she spoke about how her Grandmother was abused and often called a “filthy Irish bitch” as she walked through the streets of her country town on the way to do the washing for the local hotel… with a child in tow and one on her hip.

My Great Grandmother Eliza Jane was a first born Australian with an Irish mother who had immigrated, at the age of 18, to escape the aftermath of the “Irish Potato Famine” into which she’d been born and had managed to survive. The family story is that her parents were told, by their Landlord, that at least one of their children had to emigrate or they would be evicted and so my Susan Kelleher, and her sister Bridget, headed for South Australia under an “assisted passengers” scheme.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are advised that the following may contain names, images or voices of the deceased.

Part of my Family History narrative is also about the problems my pioneering ancestors had with “the Blacks“. Stories of how, as Eliza Jane would sit on the verandah of their modest homestead, whilst her husband was working away, with a babe in arms to try and escape the cloying nightime heat  and being terrified by the eerie sounds of “the Blacks having a corroboree” in the nearby creek. Added to this was her fear, when she was home alone, and aboriginal women would come knocking on the door for “tea and baccy” whilst their men were standing further back with spears in their hands.

So many similar stories peppered my childhood. Added to this is that my very first personal experience was when I was about 10 years of age an Aboriginal family moved in nearby. It was not a positive one. However, what is also very clear in my memory is mum talking about the Aboriginal families, who shopped in the Port Adelaide branch of David Murrays where she worked, and how they were the best “payers” and the most honest of their shoppers.

Inspired to paint the Playground equipment in Aborignal colours. (c) C.A.Crout-Habel

Inspired to paint the Playground equipment in Aborignal colours. (c) C.A.Crout-Habel

Of course it’s not surprising, given my family background, that matters of Social Justice were always at the forefront of my professional life and so was delighted to join with others in agreeing to “pilot” the draft Aboriginal Education programme in our South Australian school. The “lightbulb moment” came unexpectedly and I burst forth with copious tears on the realisation that my GGGrandmother, who fled her home-land because colonisation had dispossesed her Ancestors of their land, then became an instrument for our Indigenous Australians to also have their land taken from them.

We were taught how our Aboriginal people passed on their Family History in dance (c) C.Crout-Habel

We were taught how our Aboriginal people passed on their Family History in dance (c) C.Crout-Habel

It’s such a joy to remember back to those years when we happily worked to educate the new generation about the culture, the spiritual “dreamtime” and customs of our “First Australians”. We read their “dreamtime” stories, sang songs, cooked their food, experimented with their art work

How wonderful it was to have teachers and students from the nearby “Kaurna” kindergarten come join us and teach some of their language. e.g. the well known “Heads, shoulders, knees and toes” ditty but sang in the language of the Kaurna people. What a privilege!

To read more about this programme please click HERE

There’s been a bit of “blah blah blah” circulating and some very blatant racist comments hitting the airwaves, and social media, recently as a result of Australia Day 2013 which is so expected it just about bores me “to smithereens”… but am delighted that the Reconciliation Australia Blog clearly  describes how there has been a huge change in attitude with younger Australians which gives such hope and points the way forward for the continuing healing of our peoples.

Music and song has always been a wonderful way of reaching through differences, making connections and healing pain so, in closing, must share one of my most favourite songs… “My Island Home”. This is the original version by the renowned, and celebrated, Warumpi Band.

Cheerio… Catherine.

Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

Qq is for – Quandary

Oh, what a Quandary I’ve been in, over the past couple of days, but happily not of the unpleasant kind. In this post for the Gould “Family History Through the Alphabet Challenge”  it’s a delight to share my most recent and incredibly delightful quandary. The question/ dilemma/ puzzle has been to decide which of the very worthy applicants for a KIVA loan would “kick start” me as a Kiva lender in an ongoing Memorium to my precious mum. What a delightful, and delicious dilemma, to be in, eh? …

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The sadness is always upon me that mum is no longer here to “chew the fat” with … do “the ins and outs of… every little thing you can think of” with, get grumpy with, laugh and make-up with and always the sharing of the family stories. 

It was a shock to realise that it’s now five years since I’ve felt mum’s loving arms around me, was about to fall into a wailing heap on the Anniversary of her death and then it seemed that her voice came to me … “don’t be maudlin’ Catherine!!!” Within a split second I saw the way forward. A way to overcome my sadness and deal with these seemingly endless feelings of loss. A KIVA loan, in mum’s memory!!! … now I was smiling again.

I’ve read about the “Genealogists for Families” KIVA team, relate to their Motto: “We loan because we care about families (past, present and future)”, decided it was a good idea but never got around to doing anything about it until I got “the message” from mum on the 5th Anniversary of her death and could see her acting out her mother’s rather rude response to the plaintive weepings and wailings of the child mum was back in the early 1930’s when she’d be saying to Nana “I wish……..”

OK … with my mind now made up but feeling a little unsure about how to go about it remembered that Pauleen, in her “Family History Across the Seas” blog, wrote about the process some time ago so checked this out too and was ready to fly!!!

Then came my Quandary and the delicious and delightful dilemma of choosing who would be the first recipient?  The KIVA website made it so easy. On the left hand sidebar I simply indicated the type of person and their aspirations that mum would most like to support. Up popped a couple of likely recipients but it was Lizzbeth Marisol, from Peru, whom I decided on and am sure that mum would be well pleased.

Lizzbeth Marisol was requesting a loan of $400 to help cover the cost of processing and obtaining her B.A. Degree in Accounting and also purchase books, learning materials to pursue further studies in languages to help progress her career opportunities. The KIVA website provided more information about Lizzbeth, her family life, study and work history and within the blink of an eye knew that Lizzbeth was mum’s choice.

Kathleen Mary (Allan) Crout, 1956 (c) C.A.Crout-Habel

Mum was always passionate about education and insistent that girls’ should have the same educational opportunities as boys. Happily another 11 people joined me, with a small loan to Lizzbeth, and she now has the $400 to continue her education.

May you forever R.I.P. my precious mum, Kathleen Mary (Allan) Crout.

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 Copyright © 2012. C.A.Crout-Habel