National day of unity celebrations kick off around the country

TODAY in capital cities and regional centres around the country, thousands of Australians will visit a mosque then march for unity, compassion and inclusion as part of what Jewish, Christian and Muslim leaders have declared a “National Day of Unity”.

Welcome to Australia is partnering with the Lebanese Muslim Association and the National Mosque Open Day, encouraging all Australians to celebrate the National Day of Unity by visiting a mosque in their city before joining Walk Together.

“I’m visiting Lakemba Mosque seeking to add a deeper understanding to my friendship and connections within the Muslim community,” said Pastor Brad Chilcott.


“We have different beliefs but our future in Australia is shared.

“It’s through listening and developing authentic relationships that we build healthy communities.”

Celebrities, political leaders and thousands of Australians will will gather in 18 cities around Australia on Saturday, October 25 for “Walk Together”, an annual celebration that Welcome to Australia national director Pastor Brad Chilcott describes as “a tangible demonstration of the Australia that’s possible: welcoming, compassionate, generous and inclusive”.

Wally de Backer (Gotye), Andrew O’Keefe (Weekend Sunrise), Premier of South Australia Jay Weatherill, Tom Ballard, Mariam Veiszadeh and Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane are among many other Australians who will join Walk Together in one of 18 capital cities and regional centres around the nation.

The theme for Walk Together 2014 is “Common People, Common Dreams”.

“We’re walking for a day when prejudice is unpopular and cruelty hurts at the polls,” said Pastor Chilcott.

“We’re people who believe that no matter who you are, where you come from or how you arrived here that you’re a human being with hopes and dreams no different to our own.

“We believe all people deserve to be treated and talked about with dignity, respect and fairness.”

“It’s time for all Australians of all cultures, faiths and backgrounds to Walk Together,” he said.

For full list of Walk Together locations and local details please go to the website.