The NSW Premier’s Multicultural Award for Best Audio-Visual report was award to Plus61J Media for the series ‘Palestinian Citizens of Israel’.
Plus61J Media was last night recognised by the NSW Premier’s Multicultural Communications Awards for the landmark video series From their perspective: Palestinian citizens of Israel.
The series consists of five short video interviews with Palestinian Israelis who discuss issues including politics, identity, social challenges, culture and Arab-Jewish partnership.
It is the second year in a row that Plus61J Media has won Best Audio-Visual Report in the awards, which recognise the valuable contribution multicultural media and marketing make to our society by connecting people to their culture, identity, and language.
Last year, the video series Covid Courage Stories took out the award.
Plus61J Media commissioned Palestinian citizens of Israel filmmaker Ghousoon Bisharat and videographer Tom Dallal to interview well-known and representative personalities from their community, to ensure that the voices would be authentic. The entire series was produced from within the Palestinian community, rather than from an external production lens, looking in.
The series was filmed in December 2022 in the wake of the election of Israel’s most right-wing government.
The winning series was initiated and developed by Communications Director Sharon Offenberger, who has lived for many years in Israel, where she worked closely with local media and civil society and Israeli-Palestinian peacebuilding, and raised her Jewish family deep in an Arab neighbourhood in Jaffa. She was inspired to bring what she had learnt to her Jewish-Australian community in an authentic and unfiltered way, breaking down stereotypes of Palestinian citizens and challenging the audience to listen to a different narrative.
Plus61J Media publisher Uri Windt said he was extremely proud that the platform had been recognised for its contribution to multiculturalism again.
“Our vision is to create an informed, engaged, diverse and socially aware Jewish community and in doing so we hope to make a contribution both to Australian society and to the causes of peace and social justice in other parts of the world, including Israel.
“Breaking down stereotypes of the ‘other’ is a valuable tool for improving inter-communal relations between Jewish and Arab Australians, and other cultural communities. It encourages the Jewish community, which is actively engaged on Israel, to incorporate the perspective of a large national minority (over 20%) of Palestinian citizens into their vision of the country. It also offers a chance for Palestinian/Arab Australians to feel more comfortable engaging with a Jewish community that is better informed about their background and narrative.
“We are thrilled those values have been recognised through this award.”