ACRATH members gathered in Melbourne for their National Conference took time to celebrate the work of ACRATH over the last ten year. Three founding members of ACRATH, Srs Margaret Ng rsj, Tania De Jong rgs and Louise Cleary csb, were present at the conference and shared their memories of the beginnings of ACRATH. They reflected on the small informal beginnings of ACRATH the passion that energised them to work against human trafficking.
They recalled events such as preparing a statement for submission at the Commission for the Status of Women in 2006, receiving government funding in 2008, successful advocacy initiatives with government and effective collaboration with government and non-government agencies. The contribution of another founding member of ACRATH, Sr Pauline Coll sgs, was also acknowledged. ACRATH is now active in most states and territories of Australia and has a number of international connections. The atmosphere at the conference indicates that today’s members are fired with compassion for those who are trafficked and a determination to work against this modern day form of slavery.
An anniversary cake was then cut by the founding members each of whom are still active ACRATH members. Prior to the evening meal Sr Stancia Vichie proposed a toast to ACRATH. In reflecting on the good work that has been done she reminded members who they represent today – the various women and men they journey with or for whose human rights they are advocating.