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Funding Celebrates Islamic Culture In Victoria

27 February 2015

The Andrews Labor Government is supporting a better understanding of Islamic culture in Victoria, with a $450,000 grant to the Islamic Museum of Australia’s (IMA) Educational Program.

Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Robin Scott, said the Islamic Museum of Australia plays an important role in educating the community about Islam, its long and rich influence on art and culture, and the story of Muslims in Australia.

Since it opened in February 2014 the IMA – the first and only Islamic museum in Australia – has welcomed more than 9,000 visitors, almost half of which are from a non-Muslim faith background. More than half of all visitors to the museum over the past year were students.

The funding, to be paid over three years, is in addition to earlier capital funding of $500,000 and will help the museum build on its already successful educational program, by developing an online resource that will expand its reach to students from across Australia who might not otherwise get the opportunity to visit the museum.

The Museum’s Educational Program works to improve cross-cultural awareness and understanding about Islam in the Victorian community and provide opportunities for Australian Muslims to celebrate a positive Australian Muslim identity.

The IMA showcases a range of Islamic art including architecture, calligraphy, paintings, glass and textiles and has a number of interactive workshops and spaces.

IMA emphasises Islam in the Australian context, telling the story of first contact with the Makassans, the Cameleers, pre-war and post-war migration and contributions from settlement to the current day.

Second-generation Australian and IMA Founder and Director, Mr Moustafa Fahour, was this year awarded an Order of Australia Medal for his contribution to the Museum and to wider Australian society.

Quotes from Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Robin Scott

“Victoria is the multicultural capital of Australia. We have a proud history of migration and celebrating culture, and the Muslim community has made a significant contribution to our vibrant multicultural society.”

“I would encourage all Victorians to visit the Islamic Museum of Australia. It is a beautiful space to explore and its incredible displays encourage a better understanding of Islam.”

“The Museum plays an important role in educating the community about Islam, its rich influence on art and culture, and the story of Muslims in Australia.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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