Mar 17 2017 12:48 PM
With enough funds raised to attend the three day conference in Brisbane, members represented a range of South Australian women affected by the criminal justice system.
Last month Seeds of Affinity attended the biannual Sisters Inside’s 8th International Conference, Is prison obsolete?
With enough funds raised to attend the three day conference in Brisbane members represented a range of South Australian women affected by the criminal justice system.For Seeds of Affinity members this was not just a forum to meet with individuals, organisations and governments to share information and get creative about responses to issues affecting women in prisons globally, but it was also a space to feel a sense of belonging, understanding and solidarity.
Co-founder, Linda Fisk says, ‘The conference was amazing. Our women felt a real sense of solidarity and community and for some, were able for the first time to retake the circumstances of their criminalisation. Understanding that our society and lack of equal opportunity contributed and there is nothing inherently wrong with them.’
Deputy chairperson, Michele Jarldorn says, ‘The Brisbane conference was just brilliant. It was a space where scholars, activists, public intellectuals, advocates and exprisoners came together in solidarity. We laughed, sang, cried, often during the same presentation. We are already thinking out Seeds running their own workshop at the next conference in two years time.’
Co-secretary, Andrea Duff says, ‘Being able to present at this conference was a privilege. More importantly, it provided a launching pad for a conversation about the very real needs of mothers and children in the prison system. There is much work to do to put things right on so many levels.’
The announcement of Linda Fisk as Australian of the Year State Finalist, Local Hero 2017 really topped off the conference for Seeds of Affinity members as the organisation enters its tenth year running.
'I was flabbergasted that I was a finalist,' Linda says.
'I don't see myself as helping women, more walking alongside them.
'I think it has given them hope to see someone that has been where they've been, successfully reintegrate into he community and thrive.
'Being a part of Seeds has meant everything to me. It has allowed me to have an authentic identity that I can be proud of,' says Linda.
Seeds of Affinity: Pathways for Women offers quality guest speakers with years of experience in talking about what they do.
Seeds of Affinity were the winners of the 2015 Community Group of the Year and both co-founders, Linda Fisk and Anna Kemp are on South Australia’s Honour Roll in recognition of their contribution to the community.
For further information please read the guest speaker price list.
Please contact us directly to discuss your group’s or organisation’s needs.
I was pleased to have the opportunity to support an initiative which represented the work of women who are very much in need of gainful employment and the support which is derived from the group setting. I am aware from my own work of the benefits that the program has produced in the lives of women who have participated. - Greg Mead, Senior Counsel, Legal Services Commission of SA