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GIANTS Iftar Unites Western Sydney

2017 GIANTS Iftar Dinner The GIANTS welcomed over 250 guests to the club for the annual Iftar Dinner.
There is no greater way of representing cultural diversity than what you see here tonight.
Minister for Multiculturalism, Ray Williams

The GIANTS welcomed over 250 guests to their annual Iftar dinner, at the WestConnex Centre on Monday night.

Hosted by the GIANTS for the fourth consecutive year, the Iftar dinner brings the Western Sydney community together to embrace cultural diversity and celebrate the breaking of the fast during Ramadan.

Special guest, Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassador and Richmond footballer, Bachar Houli performed the call to prayer as the sun set, to mark the end of fasting. 

Houli explained Ramadan to those in attendance through a football metaphor, describing it as the football pre-season where people of Islamic faith refocus, set personal goals and prepare for the season ahead, or in this case, the year ahead.

GIANTS Community Engagement Coordinator, Emad Elkheir said the event is designed to strengthen understandings of different cultural groups within Western Sydney.

“The Iftar dinner is all about bringing different communities together,” he said.

“It’s a great opportunity for the AFL and the GIANTS to further engage diverse and multicultural communities.”

The Honorable Tony Burke MP and Minister for Multiculturalism, Ray Williams were in attendance, along with Australia Post Multicultural Ambassadors, Stephen Coniglio and Aliir Aliir.

Mr Burke was delighted that the club generously opened its doors during a time that is extremely personal for the Islamic community.

“At the moment, throughout Australia there is a debate going on about what it means to be an Australian,” he said.

“A whole lot of people who are observing Ramadan this month are the focus of a lot of that conversation.

“I have never known a time where a group in the community puts out the invitation to everybody else the way the Islamic community in Sydney do during Ramadan.

“To those of you who are observing, you could have kept this to yourselves, but the invitation for us to share the breaking of the fast with you is a deeply giving act.”

Mr Williams also commended the AFL and the GIANTS for continuing to be at the heart of Multiculturalism in Australia.

“There is no greater way of representing cultural diversity than what you see here tonight,” said Minister Williams.

The Iftar dinner was held as a key pillar of the GIANTS’ social inclusion program as part of GIANTS Care - a major community initiative that will see the club double its community outcomes, and further enrich the lives of people in Western Sydney. Click here to find out more.