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New session of cadets welcomed for officership training

The new cadets forming the Champions of the Mission session are (from left) Sameeha Paramaraj, Michellie Higginbottom and Sam Higginbottom.

The three sessions of cadets and Eva Burrows College staff relax on a social outing in Melbourne during Orientation Week.

Eva Burrows College has officially welcomed the Champions of the Mission session of cadets, who have joined with the Defenders of Justice and Reflectors of Holiness in training to become Salvation Army officers.

Orientation Week earlier this month saw the cadets engage in various learning and development experiences.

The new cadets are Sameeha Paramaraj (placement at Camberwell Corps, Vic.), Michellie Higginbottom (placement at Brisbane City Temple, Qld) and Sam Higginbottom (placement at Brisbane City Temple, Qld).

This year’s ongoing cadets will be expanding their learning through various placements in a social or corps placements in locations other than their primary appointment.

Across Orientation Week (30 January-5 February), the cadets engaged in various learning and development experiences. The Champions of the Mission cadets were briefed on what their individualised training programs will look like this year, and the ongoing cadets set learning goals for the year and were briefed on arrangements for their social/community and short-term corps placements for the year.

At the end of the week, the cadets and Officer Formation Stream staff participated in a spiritual retreat in the city, spending time in reflection at the National Art Gallery, the botanic gardens and amid Melbourne’s cityscapes.


The dance lessons in full swing at Carindale Corps.

Dance lessons can be quite expensive, so Carindale Corps decided to offer free classes to local children.

“Parents and children place a high value on the lessons because of the quality of the teaching by Tegan, and the affordability factor,” said Luke Terracini, Next Gen Coordinator, at Carindale, in Brisbane.

Each semester Tegan teaches two groups weekly, one for primary-age and one for secondary-age students. As well as learning dance routines, they get to perform in a concert at the end of the semester. Now, some of the older students have enough experience to help Tegan instruct the younger group.

As well as dance instruction, the primary-age children participate in a devotional time focused on a Bible story or life lesson, such as kindness or friendship.

“We often have community members connect through Doorways or Kids in the Kitchen program who learn about the free lessons,” Luke said. “Now some of those from the class have joined our youth group, or other children, or youth programs.”


The Salvation Army Tamworth celebrated 20 years in its current building towards the end of last year. The Army commenced in East Tamworth and moved to its existing home in South Tamworth in 2002.

“This is a spiritual home, a place where there is love and care evident because of God’s amazing grace,” said Corps Officer Major Yan DeTommaso.

Following the celebration service, the congregation shared a delicious barbeque lunch and anniversary cake. “It was a great day for the Tamworth community!” said the Major.

In the photo, Major Yan DeTommaso cuts the celebration cake for Tamworth’s celebration of 20 years in its current building.


Dr Michael Kheirallah on his visit to The Salvation Army Museum in Melbourne.

In 1995, Dr Michael Kheirallah made an important contribution to The Salvation Army Museum in Melbourne. Twenty-seven years later, he returned, walking through the doors of 69 Bourke St to begin a new role on the third floor as manager of the AOD Victorian Gamblers Help Foundation Services.

During his lunch break, he made his way up to the museum to surprise manager Lindsay Cox.

“Michael was last in this building in 1995 as a participant in the Red Shield History Project researching The Salvation Army’s involvement in World War Two,” Lindsay said. “The project was created by Major David Eldridge, funded by the Department of Employment, Education and Training, with long-term unemployed Tertiary-qualified participants, and supervised by myself.

“Two groups of 12 participants amassed valuable research, which is now housed in our archives. This included 184 oral history interviews with World War Two Red Shield Representatives and soldiers and civilians who came in contact with the Salvos at that time.”

This research resulted in Lindsay’s book Cup of tea, Digger?, published 25 years later in November 2021.

Michael came to Australia from Lebanon, armed with a doctorate from the University of Moscow, to start a new life.

“It’s been quite a journey for Michael,” Lindsay said. “From a participant in that employment project, through to obtaining a second doctorate and working in some interesting and demanding employment situations, to working for The Salvation Army on the very floor from where he started all those years ago.”


Shoalhaven Corps Officer Captain Matthew Sutcliffe (centre) with Steelers Club General Manager Sharon Arrow (right) at the playground with some enthusiastic youngsters.

The Steelers rugby league club in Wollongong (NSW) has donated its indoor playground to the Shoalhaven Salvation Army Centre in Nowra.

Shoalhaven Corps Officer Captain Matthew Sutcliffe, the Shoalhaven Centre manager, said he was thrilled about the donation and appreciated the generosity of the Steelers Club, which included reconstructing the playground onsite.

“One of the bonuses of the playground is that it creates a safe space for kids to play allowing parents/caregivers space to sit and talk and receive support,” he said.

The Shoalhaven Centre aims to build a strong and healthy community by developing and providing programs, activities and services that respond to the needs of the most disadvantaged and isolated people within the local community. These programs include Pathways Alcohol and Other Drugs services, Doorways (welfare assistance), First Floor Program, a workshop/veggie garden for youth, the playgroup and church.

Sharon Arrow, Steelers Club General Manager, said it was an easy decision to donate the playground when the club decided to undergo renovations, which included removing the playground.

“The Salvation Army do incredible work within the region, and I know how much the organisation appreciates the playground and the benefits to the community, such as having a safe space for families to meet up and connect,” Sharon said. “It’s great to know that it is a useful asset to the Shoalhaven Salvation Army Centre.”


The architects of the Uluru Statement and First Nations leaders yesterday launched ‘Start a Yarn’, a national program that invites the Australian public to participate in online Yarning Circles to increase awareness and understanding of the First Nations Voice ahead of the referendum.

‘Start a Yarn’ sessions will commence from tomorrow (Saturday 18 February) and run intensively during the Voice Week of Action, then on demand until the referendum. Each session will run for around 70 minutes and are suitable for individuals, workplaces and community groups.

Professor Megan Davis, Balnaves Chair in Constitutional Law at UNSW and Uluru Dialogue Co-Chair, said the yarning circles would provide the Australian public with the information they need to ‘start a yarn’ with their families, friends and workmates.

“Many Australians have heard the Voice being discussed in the national conversation but don’t know much about the Dialogue process or the 12-year journey to a referendum,” Professor Davis said.

“‘Start a Yarn’ provides an opportunity for Australians to hear directly from the architects of the Uluru Dialogues about the process that led to a grassroots consensus from First Nations people on the need for an enshrined Voice.”

“This is a really exciting time for both First Nations Peoples and the wider Australian public. It’s a real opportunity for us to come together and take a step toward a brighter future for the whole country.”

Uluru Dialogue Co-Chair Pat Anderson AO said ‘Start a Yarn’ offers Australians the chance to hear how the proposal for the Voice came about through the Uluru Statement and how it will help unite the nation. “Through Start a Yarn, we hope to be able to give people a better understanding of what the Voice is all about while also providing a genuine cultural experience.”

Anyone interested in taking part can register at For more information on the Uluṟu Statement from the Heart, visit


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