Wissam Alfarhan

Award for Leadership in Languages and Cultures - Category 2 - Recipient 2024

As a Syrian immigrant Wissam arrived in Australia in 2016, unable to speak English very well. She can now speak English and Arabic fluently and is currently learning French.    

Wissam is a member of the Islamic Student Society at the University of Adelaide, a participant in the Multicultural Communities Council of SA Leadership Youth Program and the Syrian Refugee Association. Wissam actively participated in Youth Parliament, where she has advocated for policies that promote multilingual education and cultural awareness in schools. Wissam has influenced policy discussions and decisions and this impacts students across the state, ensuring future generations can embrace and learn from diverse languages and cultures. Wissam is a confident public speaker, having been actively involved in public speaking engagements for Australian Migration Resources Centre events and at her school, Pinnacle College. Her eloquence and ability to articulate complex issues have had a profound impact on raising awareness about the importance of languages and cultures in our diverse society. Through her leadership roles, she has effectively collaborated with youth from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds to organize events and initiatives that celebrate cultural diversity. This includes multicultural festivals and cultural exchange events that have brought together people from various backgrounds to celebrate their languages, traditions, and heritage.