Nilu Bizhani arrived in Australia in 2017, after living in a refugee camp in Indonesia for four years. She lives in Geelong and is currently studying at Deakin University.
What was life like before coming to Australia?
When we lived
in a refugee camp in Indonesia, life was not easy over there as we had limited
resources and we weren’t allowed to go to school. However, I made every effort
to concentrate on my goals and ambitions.
I taught myself English online and
shared what I learned with other refugees my age in the camp.
We had study
groups as well as sports and artistic activities together, which helped us to
improve our social, mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being.
healing mean to you?
In my opinion,
healing means having some “me time”. It is important to take some time to
reflect on our actions in order to determine our strengths and weaknesses.
is OK to be sad and it is also OK to make a mistake. All we have to do is
recognise that no one is perfect. Healing takes many forms for different people
depending on their past experiences and their level of self-esteem.
of wellbeing (social, mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being)
need to be acknowledged, valued, and cherished in order to complete the process
How can art and storytelling help with healing?
engages both the brain and the body to aid healing. I can express my feelings
in my art which helps me to appreciate how far I’ve gone on my own, making me
feel proud of myself and encouraging healing.
Storytelling, whether written or
spoken, may assist us in releasing a great deal of anxiety and tension.
our experiences with others in the community may provide hope and purpose to
What are you most looking forward to in the future?
I am looking forward to a future in which every
child has access to quality education to be able to pursue their desires and
make a difference in the world.
I would love to see the war stop so that we can
learn in peace in our communities, take on new challenges/experiences, and
What do you love most about living in Geelong?
I love the community in
Geelong. It is a peaceful city for me where I can easily talk to people and
Geelong residents are very empathetic and respectful of one
another's differences, and it is amazing!