Inaugural Women in Canning forum aiming to forge ties and listen

(L to R) Gowri Glasson, Cr Yaso Ponnuthurai, Padmini Menon, Stacey Kopa, Fathima Mahmood, E-Von Lee-Areva & Megan Grant are looking forward to the inaugural Women in Canning conference. Picture: Jon Hewson
(L to R) Gowri Glasson, Cr Yaso Ponnuthurai, Padmini Menon, Stacey Kopa, Fathima Mahmood, E-Von Lee-Areva & Megan Grant are looking forward to the inaugural Women in Canning conference. Picture: Jon Hewson

LOCAL women will have the chance to discuss what they want and need from their community at the inaugural Women in Canning forum.

The women-only conference will provide opportunities for local residents to discuss their concerns, requirements, aspirations and connect with other women.

City of Canning councillor Yaso Punnuthurai said the forum would hopefully pave the way for a dedicated group devoted to the needs of women within the City of Canning.

“The important idea behind this forum is to give Canning women a say in what kind of group they would like to see evolve from the forum and a non-intimidating environment to express their views,” she said.

“I myself see the ‘Women in Canning’ group potentially as a wide-ranging group, not limited by its focus on a specific interest or activity, covering everything from mentoring programs for start-up businesswomen to cross-cultural bridge-building, ‘get to know your neighbour’ initiatives, civic education, walks in the park and high teas.

“There may be newly arrived women, or perhaps older women, who are afraid of socialising, driving, swimming, even the internet; the group’s support networks would try to address such fears and raise women’s self-confidence generally so they can contribute to society in Canning and beyond.”

Ms Punnuthurai said it was vital the forum connected with women from a diverse range of backgrounds and ethnicities.

“You can see some of the diversity in the demographics: for example, the top three overseas-born population groups among Canning residents each comprises over 5000 residents, from the UK, Malaysia and India, with China close behind, more than 20,000 in total,” she said.

“Residents with Chinese ancestry are the third-largest population group of any kind in Canning, after English and Australian.

“The aim is to build communication bridges linking these diverse communities, and the Women in Canning forum is part of that. It’s a win-win concept and we need this women’s engagement forum to get the ball rolling.”

The forum will take place at Cannington Leisureplex on Thursday September 13 from 9.30am-2pm. To register or find out more information, head to www.womenincanning.eventbrite.com.