Roughly this time last year we were approached by the lovely people at Wesley Mission to put together a workshop for women who have sought refuge in Australia from other countries with the aim of keeping them engaged with the community. Very rarely does an opportunity come along where we are able to be purely altruistic and offer one-on-one time from our hearts at a grassroots level.
All we really knew at this time about “asylum seekers” was what we had been fed by the media.. I won’t delve into this, but if you entertain the human side of the story for a minute, you would, like us, be very touched and honoured to be able to make a difference in the lives of women who have mostly come from a place of adversity that we in the first world have a very hard time coming to understand.
With some research and time with the Wesley Mission staff, we realised how complex the issue is, and essentially sad. We discovered that the women may not find ways to express their gratitude to those who have helped them along the way. With language and cultural barriers, it has never been more true that flowers speak when words fall short. As highlighted in this case, they speak a universal language that is understood right around the world.
Off we went to put together a format for a class that taught these beautiful women how to select, care, and arrange a thank you bouquet.
The morning was a huge success and very emotional for us. In the beginning, the women seemed very reserved and closed off, and by the end the room was filled with smiles and laughter. I simply cannot express how beautiful it was to see. There can be no better gauge for success in a floral class, or life for that matter!
If I can take one thing from our experience, it is to not take for granted the gift of living in one of the greatest countries on earth. In every sense we are born with abundant wealth here in Australia—every single one of us, and it’s all too easy to lose perspective of that.