Kiro Pasovski: Westfield Local Heroes 2019
Helping an entire community feel at home in Australia
Macedonian Australian Welfare Association of Sydney
Committed. Self-sacrificing. Devoted
Like many Macedonian immigrants, Kiro Pasovski arrived in Australia in the 1960s with only a suitcase.
He worked in factories and built a life for himself and his family, rising to a senior position at the Rockdale City Council where he was in charge of forty parks.
He rose to prominence in the community and supported Macedonian churches and educational, cultural and artistic organisations.
He was often the person new immigrants would go to for help finding a job or support to bring their family over to Australia.
Thirty years ago, Kiro became a founding member of the Australian Macedonian Welfare Association to help new migrants at the time and now the elderly and the rest of the community.
Now in his eighties, he is still on the board of the welfare association and takes a keen interest in its programs.
“I am involved in the seniors nursing-home visiting program. It is close to my heart as many people I know are becoming isolated and do not have much support as life changes. We visit and provide cultural friendship, conversations in a person’s first language and socialising around cultural understanding,” says Kiro.
He feels grateful to be voted a Westfield Local Hero. “It is humbling to be recognised for all the work I have done. I feel content and satisfied that the community has awarded me for all I have given over the years,” says Kiro.
“I have achieved a lot for the community over the years, including improving family functioning, community identity and harmony.”
He has also been a mentor to many young people in the community
Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation.
The association will use its grant to hire a support worker and extend and develop the nursing-home program.
“We are grateful for this grant. The support worker will accompany volunteers to the facilities and help deliver traditional food and arrange music and activities,” says Kiro.
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here.