“If you can change someone’s life, you should do it – even the smallest donation eventually makes a difference.” - Dhanush, Asylum Seeker Scholarship recipient, B.Sc.
Dhanush arrived in Australia when he was a teenager, fleeing war in Sri Lanka. On every step in his journey, Dhanush sought to further his education: he taught himself English whilst in an offshore detention centre. He studied hard to achieve excellent results in his secondary school exams.
“I knew that if I just kept going, someone would help me to learn,” he says.
Dhanush’s life changed completely when he received an Asylum Seeker Scholarship funded by supporters like you, to study Science and Astrophysics at Monash. “The scholarship has made all the difference in my life. Monash is the hub from which I’m building the base for my future. Monash is the community I belong in,” he says.
Now pursuing his passion for astrophysics, Dhanush stepped up last year in the 2018 Monash Run for Refugees, raising funds so that others could receive the same chance he did to pursue his dreams.
Bob gets moving for asylum seekers
When Bob Gerrity joined Monash University a year ago as University Librarian, running marathons and supporting the community was always something close to him. Before coming to Australia seven years ago, Bob has participated in 17 marathons, volunteering as a Marathon Coach for first-time Boston marathoners who were running to raise money for charity.
Over the years he Bob has always been mindful of his health and fitness, but hadn’t done any marathons in Australia until he came across the Monash Run for Refugees. “One week out from the Melbourne Marathon, I came across a Team Monash stand with flyers about fundraising for Asylum Seeker scholarships,” Bob says. “So I decided to participate in the Melbourne Marathon.”
Working with his colleague Lisa and Heidi from the library marketing team, Bob raised more than $800 in less than a week. "It was inspiring to see so many Monash people coming together to raise funds for this special cause,” he says. “There has been so much negative publicity both in America and here about immigration and asylum seekers, which I find really shocking. Everyone deserves a good education. It’s so great that I can give back to the community and do my part to help change it.”
“In 2019 I’m organising a team, and I know my colleagues will be on board, they’re always fundraising and organising raffles for various causes.”
Monash Alumni Outreach Centre leads the pack
Fueled by their passion for making a difference through education, the Monash Alumni Outreach Centre team led the charge to raise funds for asylum seekers at Monash in 2018. With over a dozen team members competing during Run Melbourne, the team was one of the biggest presences from Monash running the streets on July 29.
“As a team, We get to hear first-hand the impact scholarships are having on our current students, but we also have the privelege of speaking with our alumi and hearing how the scholarship has impacted their life long-term,” Says Jade, Alumni Ourache Centre Manager. “For us, joining the Monash run for refguees was a practical way to raise awareness and funds for a cuase close to our hearts.”