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ANMM monument to migration celebrates 25th anniv

Press Release, National Monument to migration celebrates 25th anniversary with addition of over 600 new names, Oz Arab Media, 7 May 2024

On the 25th anniversary of the National Monument to Migration, also known as the Welcome Wall, the Australian National Maritime Museum will add 686 new names from 47 different countries to the wall in an unveiling ceremony on May 11.

The Australian National Maritime Museum is home to the National Monument to Migration and its digital hub, Faces of Migration, which shares the migration stories behind some of the people whose names have been inscribed on the Wall, adding new stories each year, as the Monument continues to grow.

Honouring those who have migrated from countries around the world to make Australia their new home, the first names were unveiled on the Welcome Wall in January 1999 and the latest additions will join the nearly 34,000 names that have been added since.

The ceremony will be held at the Museum, attended by hundreds of families, friends and community members, and feature notable guest speakers Petra Taok (SBS), Michael West (Metropolitan Land Council), Yamamah Agha (SSI), Alana Woods (UK migration story), Tran Nguyen (Vietnam and Indonesia migration story), Rebecca Khair (Lebanon migration story), and representatives from the National Maritime Museum.

Ms Daryl Karp AM, Director and CEO of the Museum said, ‘These 686 names are from 47 different countries and add to our large collection of migrant stories here at the museum. The Monument marks the long history of migrants who have shaped modern Australia. Here at the museum, we celebrate the success of our multicultural nation. We constantly need to remind ourselves of this success. It is at the heart of our social cohesion.’

Donors can also contribute a brief story about the person being honoured by the inscription, details of which are published on the museum website.

The museum is now accepting names for the next panel on the Monument, with registrations open until June 30 for the next unveiling ceremony.

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The National Monument to Migration (also known as the Welcome Wall) at the Australian National Maritime Museum commemorates those who have migrated from countries around the world to make Australia their new home. The name of any person who was born overseas and settled in Australia may be registered on the Monument. Registration opens during limited periods each year and a donation applies for each inscription. The Monument is situated on the northern promenade of the museum, facing Pyrmont Bay which is historically a place where many migrants first arrived in Sydney.

The first names were unveiled on the Welcome Wall on January 24, 1999, by the Governor General Sir William Deane AC KBE KStJ KC. On March 21, 2021, Governor General, General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC elevated the status of the Welcome Wall to become Australia’s National Monument to Migration.