Dear Members of Multi-Cultural Integration Australia (MCIA),
It is with great honor and excitement that I assume the role of President of MCIA, an organization that stands for the values of multiculturalism, integration, and unity. As we embark on this journey together, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all of you for entrusting me with this responsibility. I am truly humbled by the opportunity to lead such a diverse and vibrant community.
Before I delve into our shared vision for the future, allow me to share a glimpse of my background, which has shaped my dedication to fostering harmony and success in our society. As a doctoral graduate of Curtin University and someone who has worked across various fields, including business, teaching, and politics, I bring a wealth of experience to this role. Having served as a Cabinet Minister in the government of Maldives, overseeing critical portfolios such as Environment and Energy, Foreign Affairs, Gender Family and Human Rights, and Health, I have witnessed firsthand the transformative power of collaboration and understanding.
In addition to my diplomatic position as Honorary Consul for Belgium in Maldives, I currently serve as the CEO of SIMDI Group, a conglomerate encompassing diverse businesses ranging from trading to hospitality, education, health, and wellness. Furthermore, my involvement with Curtin University, as an Advisory Panel member for the School of Management and Chair for the Advisory Panel for Executive Education and MBA, has allowed me to contribute to the growth and development of future leaders.
I am proud to share that my commitment and achievements have been recognized beyond my immediate sphere. Being chosen as the International and Business Role Model of the Year 2023 by Women in Management and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has only fueled my passion to inspire and empower individuals, especially women, to overcome barriers and reach their full potential.
Now, as President of MCIA, my primary goal is to foster a sense of togetherness among the multicultural associations in Western Australia. By harnessing the power of the arts, such as pageantry, fashion, and other community functions, we can celebrate our diverse backgrounds, traditions, and stories. Through these mediums, we can build bridges of understanding and appreciation, thereby strengthening the fabric of our society.
I firmly believe that success lies not only in individual achievements but in the collective progress we make as a community. MCIA will be at the forefront of promoting collaboration, facilitating dialogue, and encouraging mutual respect among the various cultures and communities we represent. By embracing our differences and recognizing the richness they bring to our society, we can create an inclusive environment where everyone has an opportunity to thrive.
To achieve our goals, we will need your active participation, passion, and unwavering commitment. I encourage each of you to contribute your unique skills, talents, and ideas to shape MCIA into an even stronger force for positive change. Let us unite our efforts, leverage our collective wisdom, and work together to build a multicultural society that is not only diverse but also harmonious.
As we embark on this exciting journey, I am filled with hope and optimism. Together, we can create a society where every individual, regardless of their cultural background, can flourish and realize their dreams. I am confident that with our shared dedication, resilience, and the support of the wider community, we will achieve remarkable success.
Thank you once again for the trust you have placed in me. I am eager to collaborate with each and every one of you to make a lasting impact and leave a legacy of unity, understanding, and prosperity.
Dr. Mariyam Shakeela
President, Multi-Cultural Integration Australia (MCIA)