The Spanish speaking community is a well established community in Sydney. A large influx of immigrants from Spanish-speaking countries started arriving in the 1960s and settling mostly in the Western suburbs of the city. From the 1990s onwards, the skilled migration program allowed another significant wave of Spanish speaking immigrants to come to Australia and the number of Spanish speakers in the Northern and North Western suburbs of Sydney has been increasing even since. Spanish speaking immigrants in this area come from many different countries in Latin America and there are also some coming from Spain. Argentinians, Colombians, Uruguayans, Peruvians, and Venezuelans are the most represented countries. Although belonging to different countries, Spanish speaking immigrants feel part of the same family. They not only share the same language, but also their religion, and most cultural traits.
A few community groups have been operating in this area of Sydney to service this community. Hispanitos Spanish Playgroup has been providing a space for mothers with young children to meet weekly since 2003. Te Amo Peru, is also a well established dancing company that performs Peruvian dances in Australia and overseas. Mujeres X Mujeres is an organisation that raises funds to assist poor communities in Argentina. And several other music bands, book clubs, and informal regular gatherings provide the Spanish Speaking Community spaces where they can maintain their language and culture, and feel at home in the host country. Since 2010 a website dedicated to keeping the Spanish speaking people informed about current affairs, events, and services –Latin Hub– has provided yet another point of contact for the community.
The Spanish speaking community has been part of MICS since 2009, as it intends not only to share its great heritage and traditions with other immigrant groups, and learn about other communities’ culture, but to foster peaceful and productive relations with different communities in Australia. To unify and give strength to all these different initiatives the Spanish community in this area of Sydney is now liaising with SLASA (Spanish and Latin American Association for Social Assistance), which has been operating since the 1970s in the Western suburbs, to get support to establish a branch in this area of the city. We have many ideas and projects once this partnership with SLASA begins to operate. Amongst those, we would like to organise language classes, book clubs, drama lessons, Spanish language movie nights, cooking classes, seniors’ gatherings. We would be happy to hear from you if you want to join any of our groups or assist us in establishing SLASA in Northern Sydney.
Hispanitos Playgroup and Hispanitos Escolares: firstname.lastname@example.org
SLASA Norte: http://nswslasa.com.au/es and email@example.com
SALSA Norte Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SLASA-Norte-1402184933386797/
Hispanitos Playgroup on Daily telegraph: