Australian South Asia Forum Inc. (ASAF) is a not-for-profit established in 2012 with a view to bringing Australians of South Asian heritage or those with an interest in South Asia (comprising eight nations of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) on a single platform with a view to achieving greater cohesion, assimilation, cultural recognition and economic empowerment. Since launch ASAF has grown significantly and achieved many of its objectives of acting as a bridge for the South Asian communities in Australia.
On 20th & 21st May 2017, ASAF will be holding the inaugural South Asian Film, Arts & Literature Festival (SAFAL Fest) in the North Ryde campus of key event partner Macquarie University. This is a first of its kind in the world focussed on South Asian culture and arts. The event is being supported by the City of Ryde and the Commonwealth Department of Communications and the Arts. About 4000 people are expected to visit the festival over the two days.
The event will celebrate and showcase the rich, diverse arts and cultural heritage of the South Asian region to the Australian public, as well positively present the multicultural diversity and depth of talent in Australia to international audiences, while promoting the City of Ryde as a fantastic destination for tourism, education, business and investment.
The festival program includes overseas Bollywood and Singhalese film screenings and film direction & acting masterclasses with their directors and artists, a short film competition, author book readings and panel discussions, creative writing workshop, artist exhibitions, performing arts displays, local talent quest competition and a grand SAFAL Awards Night where international luminaires and distinguished persons from the local community will be recognised for their contribution to film, arts and literature in the presence of local, state and federal dignitaries and diplomats.
SAFAL Fest welcomes communities to an inclusive and vibrant celebration of South Asian cultural and artistic traditions and seeks Expressions of Interest from local communities and residents in the event. SAFAL Fest offers a unique opportunity to recognise the importance of film, arts and literature in maintaining cultural traditions and exploring new identities in contemporary northern Sydney, and to link community activities to future creative, commercial and scholarly activities across film, arts and literature.