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Horn of Africa Relief and Development Agency (HARDA) is a non-government, non-political, secular, not-for-profit organisation, with membership open to anyone, regardless of race or creed. We support and act as advocates for the successful settlement and integration in Australia of refugees and humanitarian entrants from the Horn of Africa countries. We also develop and seek funding for model sustainable development projects in these HoA countries - Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, Sudan, Somalia, Uganda and Djibouti.




Paul Bisson's untimely death

Everyone was deeply saddened and distressed by the sudden death of Paul Bisson on 5th February. Paul came to HARDA as a volunteer soon after he retired following a forty year professional career as an accountant, including many years as Finance Director and Chief Financial Officer for Hawker Pacific Pty Ltd. He started his career with Price Waterhouse in the UK and then in Malawi.

He joined HARDA’s Secretariat where he was designated as our finance officer and filled the position of Treasurer on the Executive Committee. Paul was a gentleman in the true sense of the word, a fine and good man who worked tirelessly for the good of others - generous, a great listener, a valued advisor with a keen sense of humour. He was a consummate professional who was greatly admired by everyone in the HARDA family and the wider community, especially by members of the African Australian communities. We are richer for having known him.

Please feel free to share your thoughts and stories about Paul on our Tribute Page.


.........  Premiere of New Land, New Life

After 12 months of planning, research & filming, HARDA released its new documentary titled New Land, New Life. The premiere of this exciting film was launched by THE HON BRENDAN O'CONNOR, Minister for Immigration & Citizenship on Feb 20th. It tells the inspiring stories of 5 refugees from the Horn of Africa, all who have undergone great hardship yet made successful new lives here.  

FEW people can say they drank water squeezed from grass in a dead elephant's stomach to survive. Or wielded an AK-47 before picking up a pen... Deng Thiak Adut can... 'Survivors grab chance'-SMH News; 

Photo by Sahlan Hayes of Deng Thiak Adut, who is now a lawyer in Australia 

Funded by DIAC under The Diversity & Social Cohesion Program; Produced by Michael Power, Afterglow Productions

Swim, Survive and Socialise Project was enjoyed by all  Make sure your child is water safe! 

HARDA has just completed its fourth successful Swim Program, with this one held in the January school holidays. This program was only possible due to the support of the Lidcombe Catholic Club Dooleys through Auburn ClubGRANTS. Our heartfelt thanks goes to them.

With about 50 kids in the 7-12 age group attending HARDA's free two week comprehensive swimming & water safety program it was our biggest program to date. As always the kids had lots of fun, enjoyed the classes and went home with an new important & potentially lifesaving skill. It was fab to see the progress made by all the kids.
  2014 Program full Report 

Somali Youth Outreach Project

This very successful program was run for the second year by HARDA & Auburn Sports Club and supported by the Attorney-General’s Building Community Resilience Program. It encouraged young Somali participants to develop their leadership skills through sporting and community activities. The activities were supported by the local community, youth centres, law enforcement agencies and locally based organisations.

Central to the program’s success was the mentor-to-mentee youth leadership method. Participants attended mentoring workshops prior to attending a 7 day Leadership and Sports Camp in Melbourne. Those attending the camp had a great deal of fun and it  was a wonderful opportunity to experience the resilient spirit of the young people in a dynamic environment that nurtured their leadership capacity and instilled a deep sense of what it is to be Australian.  The young men attended more mentoring workshops on their return home and the grand finale was a 3 day Family Fun Weekend and Community Cup Soccer Tournament run by the program in Sydney with interstate teams attending. This great program has created an environment of friendship and belonging where young African-Australians and CALD young people have gained strength and power, collectively and as individuals, through creative learning and sports programs. More

Other News :

Our cooking pot project has made the news!!

SMH; Auburn Review

Listen to more about the Cooking Pot Project on SBS Radio Here



One of our affliate organisations is Southern Hope Community Organisation, an NGO working to improve the lives of South Sudanese migrants to Australia. For more info visit their website

We are also affiliated to Local Aid am NGO which empowres marginalized communities and vunerable children in Kenya; visit their website at

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HARDA acknowledges the generous support of the Edmund Rice Center without whom we wouldn't have an office base


© Copyrights, Harda 2009