Community partners play a vital role in the hostel stories research project. We work together with the following organisations.
The Migration Museum, managed by History SA, works towards the preservation, understanding and enjoyment of South Australia's diverse cultures. It is a place to discover the many identities of the people of South Australia through the stories of individuals and communities. The Migration Museum has contributed to the project via curator participation in the research, access to existing archival materials, oral histories, and material artefacts, and the hosting of reunion and other events with former hostel residents. The partnership with the University of Adelaide team on this project has contributed significantly to their Hostel Stories exhibit by providing detailed scholarly information about all of the SA hostels as well as assistance with sourcing relevant artifacts and photographs which were displayed in the exhibit.
City of Charles Sturt
The City of Charles Sturt, located west of the Adelaide CBD, provides a wide range of services to a socially and culturally diverse community of more than 108,000 residents and ratepayers. As a local government, we are responsible for maintaining and improving the assets of the City for the ongoing enjoyment of the community. Our cultural heritage and stories of migration and settlement are very important to the Charles Sturt community.
The City of Charles Sturt has a significant interest in the Hostel Stories project as three hostels were once located in the council area. These hostels were at Hendon, Woodville, and Pennington (formerly Finsbury). The hostels had a direct impact on shaping the Charles Sturt community, with many former hotel residents permanently settling in the suburbs surrounding each hostel. Through the Hostels Stories project we are gaining a greater knowledge of the three local hostels and the role they played in the migrant experience. Charles Sturt has hosted a travelling exhibition based on the project as well as a number of community events, and has assisted greatly in recruiting participants to provide oral histories for the project.
City of Port Adelaide Enfield
The City of Port Adelaide Enfield was established in 1996 with the amalgamation of the City of Port Adelaide and the City of Enfield. The City extends from the River Torrens to Outer Harbor and covers an area of approximately 97 square kms, with a growing population of over 118,000 residents and 800 businesses. Port Adelaide Enfield has historic and contemporary interests in this project, as several major hostels were located in the current day boundaries of the Port Adelaide Enfield (Semaphore, Rosewater, and Gepps Cross) as well as being the location of Outer Harbor which was a major port for migrant entry. Many migrants have remained within the Port Adelaide Enfield area.
The Hostel Stories project is closely aligned with a number of Port Adelaide Enfield Council's current goals including promoting recognition of the city's historic significance, as well as preservation and promotion of critical heritage sites, and supporting the City's vision as a vibrant and diverse cultural community by allowing experiences of an important subpopulation of its residents and former residents to be recorded, preserved and exhibited. It also will contribute to shaping a resilient and vibrant multicultural community into the future, given that the Council area continues to serve as a key focal point for new migrants. Port Adelaide Enfield has hosted the Hostel Stories travelling exhibit at several locations as well as numerous community events to bring together former migrants, and has assisted in locating relevant local materials and contacts.
Vietnamese Community in Australia (SA chapter)
The Vietnamese Community in Australia /SA Chapter Inc. (VCASA) was established in 1978, as a result of the wave of boat people (refugees) who fled Vietnamese communism after the civil war ended. This community organisation was originally formed to address the settlement needs of Vietnamese people and advocate for socially disadvantaged people and those whose human rights have been violated. The organisation has grown significantly and now offers a range of culturally competent services to an increasingly culturally diverse client group: services target Vietnamese and non-Vietnamese people in need, with a focus on people from non-English speaking backgrounds, especially new arrival communities.
The VCASA has considerable interests in preserving local settlement histories of their community as part of their broader mandate to further social welfare concerns within this community. The Hostel Stories Project fits well within this mandate as most Vietnamese currently residing in South Australia came through the hostel system. The organisation is providing invaluable in-kind support for promoting the project in a culturally-appropriate manner, as well as assistance in proofreading translated materials. Through this partnership with the University of Adelaide, VCA will continue its engagement with socially-relevant scholarship.
State Records of South Australia is the official custodian for archival records created by state and local government agencies within South Australia. Under the State Records Act 1997, its responsibilities are to:
• ensure the preservation of official records by controlling their transfer, custody and disposal;
• provide the public and agencies with ready access to the vast collection; and
• assist agencies in observing best practice records management.
State Records houses many relevant archival records associated with migrant/refugee experiences in hostels which were previously poorly described or not easily identifiable, and hence underutilized. The role of State Records in the Hostel Stories project has covered a number of areas including hosting an undergraduate intern who prepared a report covering archival holdings, assisting team researchers to identify and obtain archival materials, providing digital photographs of key materials, and providing the venue for public consultation with former migrants who lived in hostels in South Australia. The Hostel Stories exhibition at the Migration Museum includes a photographic album from State Records' collection (Woodville Reception Centre in c.1971 - GRG7/96). By partnering with the University of Adelaide, State Records has been able to promote knowledge about this important period of South Australian history in direct response to community needs, as the project will result in resources which will have future use by other researchers and by the broader community.