Australia Day

26 January 2015

92 days to go

Muslim & non-Muslim Understanding

The Award for Muslim & non-Muslim Understanding is a new National award launched in 2012, presented by the Australia Day Council of SA & the University of South Australia

Who do you know who helps Muslims and non-Muslims to understand each other?

This award recognises the efforts of individuals and organisations, with any or no religious affiliation, that have done the most to improve understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims in Australia. It is part of the centre’s remit to work towards improving relations between those who are Muslims and those who are not and is a means of celebrating those members of the community who have done the most to improve understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims in Australia. 

The award:

  • widely disseminates good practices that make a significant contribution to improving relations between Muslim and non-Muslim people
  • publicly acknowledges and rewards good works and inspirational role models
  • acts as a catalyst for public debate and engagement.

Nominations for the Award for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding have now closed

Previous Recipients

Individual 2013Heather Kirkpatrick

Hobart filmmaker Heather Kirkpatrick was awarded the MnM Award 2013 in the individual category for her film Mary meets Mohammad, which documents the transition in one woman’s life from prejudice and mistrust to understanding and friendship. Through the key protagonists, Mary, an older Christian Australian woman, and Mohammad, a young Muslim asylum seeker in detention, we see an evolution of understanding built through conversation, kindness, patience and experience. The film comes with a study guide for use in Australian schools, providing an opportunity to enrich students’ understanding about the reasons why asylum seekers come to Australia and what it means to be Muslim.

Organisation 2013 - Muslim Women's Association of South Australia

The winner in the organisation category is the Muslim Women’s Association of South Australia. Established in 1993, the association has been working to improve understanding between Muslim and non-Muslim communities for 20 years. Outstanding programs run by the association include the You Will Achieve program, a special speaking circuit of Adelaide schools that aims to build understanding and inspire achievement. This association also works within the community to support families, runs conferences around key issues of misunderstanding including Sharia law, and works to debunk stereotypes about Muslim women.


For more information about these awards, please visit the website