Watchwords

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Fires rage across the East Coast of Australia. Interstate and New Zealand firies join our New South Wales and Queensland fire fighters, volunteers and residents, in a desperate attempt to save lives and property. More coming soon…(Photo by L.J. May S/S)

Watchwords

This is Brisbane! Queensland, Australia

Greetings and welcome to Watchwords. This site is about writers, readers, artists, filmmakers and our beautiful City of Brisbane.

WHAT'S ON IN BRISBANE RIGHT NOW?

QUICKLISTS FOR 'WHAT'S ON AUTHORS?', WHICH COVERS AUTHOR, ILLUSTRATOR AND FILMMAKER EVENTS, AS WELL AS WRITING AND FILMMAKER COMPETITIONS FOR THE CURRENT UPDATE, ARE UNDER THE TAB ON THE MENU AT LEFT - OR CLICK HERE EVENT QUICKLISTS! 

DUE TO THE LARGE NUMBER OF GENERAL EVENTS, THERE IS A SECOND PAGE FOR 'WHAT'S ON NOW?' AT EVENT QUICKLISTS! P2.

THIS WEBSITE IS CURRENTLY BEING UPDATED - PLEASE COME BACK SOON!

 WHAT'S THE NEWS? TELL US WHAT'S HAPPENING!

 MAKE SOMEONE’S CHRISTMAS AND DONATE TO HOMELESS CONNECT

Help to change a life and donate to help Brisbane’s homeless. Until Friday, 15 November 2019, you can donate TOILETRIES to your local Brisbane City Council library. PLEASE NOTE that BCC libraries can accept TOILETRIES ONLY – they have limited room to process donations. You can also take both NON-PERISHABLE FOOD and TOILETRIES to your local ward office.

Although Council appreciates your generosity, they can’t accept clothing donations for this Homeless Connect event – please take them to your local charity shop: the Salvos and Vinnies will make sure they get to the people who need them.

HOMELESS CONNECT brings together businesses and community groups at a one-day event. It provides free services to people experiencing homelessness, or those at risk of homelessness. The project has helped more than 17,290 people, and is part of Brisbane City Council's commitment to improve the quality of life for all residents. 

This event is run completely by volunteers with donations from schools, businesses and residents of Brisbane. Homeless Connect events provide the following: 

  • volunteer medical and allied health care professionals including doctors, dentists, optometrists, podiatrists and massage therapists
  • housing support and community support
  • haircuts by volunteer barbers and hairdressers
  • immunisation delivered by Council's immunisation team
  • personal grooming items such as face washers, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo and deodorant
  • clothing and shoes for adults, children and babies
  • non-perishable food items
  • lunch and entertainment.

The next Homeless Connect event will be held on Thursday 28 November 2019. Housing and community support organisations can register an interest to attend this event by emailing the Safe Communities Officer. You can register your interest to volunteer for this event by visiting the Volunteering Queensland website.

REMEMBRANCE DAY 2019

This November, REMEMBRANCE DAY SERVICES were held in Brisbane and around Queensland. In Brisbane, the State’s largest Remembrance Day Ceremony was held at the Shrine of Remembrance, ANZAC Square, Brisbane on Monday, 11 November 2019. 

Visitors wore a poppy and joined with family and friends to remember and honour the 57,705 Queensland soldiers who enlisted in the First World War and those who have lost their lives since in the service of their country.

Beneath the Shrine, visitors can embark on an interactive journey from the First World War to today inside the refreshed ANZAC SQUARE MEMORIAL GALLERIES – a free exhibition curated by the State Library of Queensland. Anzac Square and the Memorial Galleries are at 285 Ann Street, Brisbane, Queensland.

The Memorial Galleries are open Monday to Friday, and Sundays, from 10.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. (closed Saturdays). Lay a poppy, wreath, or message of remembrance for Queensland associated battalions, regiments and other units. For more information, go to https://www.anzacsquare.qld.gov.au/commemorate.

What is the difference between Remembrance Day and ANZAC Day?

REMEMBRANCE DAY marks the anniversary of the Armistice which ended the First World War (1914–18). Each year on 11 November, Australians observe one minute’s silence at 11.00 a.m. in memory of those who died or suffered in all wars and armed conflicts, in appreciation of their sacrifice.

ANZAC DAY marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War – the landing on Gallipoli. Each year on 25 April, Australians gather at dawn to remember those who served and died in war and on operational service past and present.

What’s happening about the pigeon?

Yes, a POPPY PINCHING PIGEON has purloined paper poppies to create a nest in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra. Staff at the AWM were puzzled as to why poppies were regularly going missing from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in early October, but eventually found that the crafty pigeon has been nicking the poppies to create a nest in an alcove above the stained-glass window of a wounded Australia soldier.

It’s one of those bizarre stories that eventually drift off into the jungles of urban myth, but in this case it really is true, and it has particular significance for many people, given the bird has built its colourful nest so close to Remembrance Day 2019.

Historian, Dr Melah Hampton says: ‘Pigeons have been in use in both war and civilian life for centuries. Whenever we talk about animals in war, they are fulfilling a purpose or performing a task that people can’t do easily on their own. So we use horses for transporting people or pulling guns, and we use pigeons as an answer to our problems with communication.

‘Particularly in the early wars, communication is really difficult. Wireless is in its absolute infancy in the First World War and telephone wires get broken apart in the shellfire on the Western Front. So pigeons are particularly of use in warfare when you’ve go a couple of men trying to get a message from where they are back to the backline; a pigeon can get that through sometimes when nothing else can.’

Unless they’re mugged by a magpie of course.

Two Australian pigeons were awarded the Dickin Medal for their actions during the war. This medal was instituted by Maria Dickin, the founder of the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals in England, and is often popularly referred to as the Victoria Cross for animals (although not by the custodians of the Victoria Cross, who aren’t happy about that description). Pigeons, dogs, horses and a ship’s cat all have been awarded a medal). Really! Go to https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dickin_Medal for more.

Any animal who displays conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty in wartime is awarded the medal, which delights animal lovers. Of course, there are those who think the rodents of the air are just trying to get home for a feed, but that is probably unkind. Anyone who would like to learn more about our feathered friends’ adventures will find some fascinating information at https://www.awm.gov.au/articles/blog/pigeons-at-war.

So, what to do about the boid? The AWM has decided to leave the pigeon alone until after it’s finished nesting – which could be quite some time. Those who are fascinated by this story will be even more enthused about National War Animals Day coming up early next year. The Australian War Memorial in Canberra will commemorate this day with lots of activities on Sunday, 23 February 2020. Who knows – the AWM nesting pigeon might be a special guest. For a Channel 7 News video of this story, go to https://m.facebook.com/7NEWSsydney/videos/535251350602740.

IN OUR PHOTO ESSAY THIS MONTH!

Find information and pictures of EVENTS HAPPENING AROUND BRISBANE AND QUEENSLAND on EVENT QUICKLISTS!, EVENT QUICKLISTS! P2, and WHERE IS BRISBANE? See NEWS PAGE 2 for information and events happening during the BRISBANE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL (BIFF) and the ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL. Go to the top and bottom of this pageWHAT'S ON AUTHORS? (4 pages), and COMPETITIONS ETC. (4 pages) for Halloween pictures and stories. Visit the top and bottom of the WHAT'S ON NOW? (5 pages) for pics and information on where you can snoop during BRISBANE OPEN HOUSE.

UPDATED PENSIONERS AND SENIORS KIT

The updated PENSIONERS AND SENIORS KIT is full of useful information and contact numbers, written in no-nonsense, plain English information for people aged 65+. Download your copy here Download your copy. This information kit contains helpful information about local services and pension entitlements, available to our older Australians, and how to access them.

Seniors play crucial roles in our communities, families and civic life. They have made a tremendous contribution to the life and prosperity we enjoy today. We owe a duty as a nation to ensure that every older Australian in our community can age well – with the respect, support and opportunities they deserve.

FREE OFF-PEAK TRAVEL FOR SENIORS IN BRISBANE!

The Brisbane City Council plans to get residents home quicker and safer by providing FREE OFF-PEAK TRAVEL FOR SENIORS, which will create more opportunities for older residents to move around the city and connect with family and friends.

The free off-peak travel for eligible Senior go card holders applied from Tuesday, 1 October 2019 on Brisbane buses, CityCats and ferries from 8.30 a.m. to 3.30 p.m., and from 7.00 p.m. to 6.00 a.m. Monday to Friday, and also on buses all day and night on weekends. Go here to Read More.

SCREEN CREATIVES ON BOTH SIDES OF CAMERA CALL FOR ACTION ON LOCAL CONTENT

Leading Australian actors, directors, crew, writers and producers recently went to Canberra in a united push to convince Parliament to introduce local content requirements for booming digital viewing platforms. They were part of the MAKE IT AUSTRALIAN campaign backed by the Australian Directors' Guild, Australian Writers' Guild, Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance, and Screen Producers Australia.

With a growing consensus that Australian content rules must keep up with the growing appetite for on-demand and streaming media, a star-studded delegation including actors MARTA DUSSELDORP, HUGO WEAVING, LEAH VANDENBERG and RHYS MULDOON, director GILLIAN ARMSTRONG, screenwriters SHANE BRENNAN and ELLIE BEAUMONT, cinematographer ANDREW CONDER, and producers BARBARA STEPHEN and KEVIN WHYTE met with politicians from all parties to call for obligations to make original Australian stories for all media platforms.

During the two-day visit, the delegation argued for the retention of Australian and children's content rules for commercial free-to-air and pay television, competitive incentives to support film and television production in a global market, and sustainable funding for public broadcasters and Screen Australia.

They explained that Australia's screen industry delivers enormous cultural and economic value to our nation, generating about $3 billion in economic activity each year and employing about 20,000 people, but this cannot be taken for granted.

This is particularly the case for rapidly changing viewing habits which have seen vast audiences migrate from traditional terrestrial television to digital services like Netflix, YouTube, Apple TV, Amazon Prime and Stan.

‘In a time of great challenge and change, telling our own Australian stories to each other and the world has never been more important,’ said Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance chief executive Paul Murphy. ‘We will be urging federal politicians to not only keep in place Australian and children's content rules for commercial television, but to extend them to the digital realm.’

‘These rules ensure that a diverse array of Australian stories is shown on Australian screens, and without them we would be flooded with content that speaks with a British or American accent,’ said Matthew Deaner, CEO of Screen Producers Australia. It is time that content regulation evolved to keep pace with changing audience and viewing habits so streaming services, ISPs and telcos also have obligations to invest in original local programming.’

Politicians were also told how Australia's screen industry is being held back by our tax system. The Make It Australian campaign has been calling for the producer offset for Australian TV, which is currently 20%, to be brought into line with the 40% offset for feature films.

The important role of public broadcasters and Screen Australia in the film and television ecosystem was also raised with politicians. Since 2014, almost $350m has been cut from the ABC. Over this same period, the ABC's commissioning budgets for adult drama and children's content each dropped by 20%.

‘The ABC and SBS commission more local content than any other broadcaster, but they need to be properly funded,’ said Jacqueline Elaine, executive director of the Australian Writers' Guild. ‘It is time for our federal politicians to ensure funding of the ABC, SBS and Screen Australia is prioritised and returned to levels that enable them to adequately invest in the creation and development of Australian scripted and children's content.’

While in Canberra, the Make It Australian delegation met with representatives of the Liberal, National, Labor, Green and Centre Alliance parties. An open letter to New Communications Minister Paul Fletcher, signed by over 200 of the industry's most accomplished writers, directors, producers, actors, creatives and crews, was published in The Canberra Times.  Paul Fletcher recently indicated that the government was considering some form of local content requirement for streaming video services.

For more information on the Make It Australian campaign, go to the website at https://makeitaustralian.com/home. Performers, producers, writers, directors and crew are joining forces to campaign for the future of the screen industry. Interested people can sign up for news and updates at https://makeitaustralian.com/take-action.

(Thank you to the AWG for this information)

AND THAT REALLY IS THE END OF THE NEWS! 


See NEWS PAGE 2 for more NEWS.

UPDATES

18. Nov, 2019
See THE NEWS above for the exciting events happening in Brisbane and around Queensland. As usual, during November 2019, there are COMPETITIONS to enter and OPPORTUNITIES for creators, as well as AUTHORS to meet, WORKSHOPS to attend, and GENERAL EVENTS to go to – most events are FREE or LOW COST.
SMOKE HAZE OVER BRISBANE from the New South Wales and Queensland bushfires, photo taken from the Mt Coot-tha lookout. The air quality in Brisbane is said to be currently worse than Beijing – and that is bad! Stay indoors if possible, until it clears. (Photo by L.J. May)