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AustralAsian Centre for Human Rights and Health

Our Mission is to enhance gender equality, gender based empowerment,  build safer  families and grow resilient communities.

ACHRH was founded in September 2012 by Founding Directors Dr Manjula OConnor, Mr Viv Prasad and Dr Jonathan Harrison. ACHRH is a think tank that proposes innovative solutions to woman's health, human rights and aiming to strengthen family units. ACHRH was formally launched on Saturday 16 February 2013 at Punjabi Masala Restaurant with 80 invited guests in attendance.


All of the three founding Directors and the inaugural chairman Prof Ian Howie were present including the ACHRH advisors and community ambassadors. VIP s included MP Elizabeth Miller, MP Neil Angus, MP Jude Perera, VMC commissioners Srini Chidambaran , Elizabeth Drozd, Ministerial Advisor Nitin Gupta, Ms Melba Marginson, Mr Deepak Vinayak, and Film Maker Anupam Sharma.

Starting off as ACHRH Anti-Dowry Petition, the extensive media and community campaign grew to be fully accepted by the Royal Commission into Family Violence and became Recommendation 156 in the RCFV Report (2016)

Our Work


In this community participatory theatre (CPT),  community volunteer actors will act out scenarios to concretize the images of what are nebulous and abstract concepts.  Theatre will explore our community’s understanding of what does help seeking involve, where to go for help, how to navigate the system, why early help seeking is better than delaying it.  Theatre will explore how we can maximise family relations, how family can impact mental health and enhance resilience.


Based on action research principles Natak Vihar was led by Principal Facilitator Dr Manjula O’Connor in association with Theatre Director Dr Rosemary Blight of the University of Melbourne. It was conducted in Greater Metropolitan Melbourne with 172 Australian-Indian women and men. The project was funded by the Victorian Multicultural Commission (VMC). Street Theatre is much loved by people in India gave rise to the concept using community participatory theatre project “Natak Vihar” (Sanskrit for Theatre Space).


UNITED WE STAND. UWS is a Primary Prevention of Family Violence Program. This is a video resource created with the help of Australian South Asian community. Interactive discussions with community members centre. The discussion is centred around the meaning of Patriarchy, wealth control and decision making power; arranged marriage and dowry The discussions were videotaped and the resource is available by contacting us. 

United We Stand was funded by the Victorian Government’s Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPC) 

To learn about the above initiatives in detail, our other socially critical initiatives or for collaborating with us, please please visit our website and get in touch with us. 


MRR interactive workshops are designed to engage community members in exploring gender constructs, stereotypes and drivers of family domestic violence MRR is based on Our Watch principles of understanding the drivers and underlying causes of family domestic violence as described in Change the Story. MRR is a primary prevention program and supports the Commonwealth plan to reduce violence against women and girls.  The program is funded by the Federal Government’s Department of Social Services (DSS). Migrants explore their own cultural values vis-a-vis that of Australian cultural values around gender based values, using adult learning principles.

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