In 2016, ALCASA has been proud to expand its monthly conversations sessions to include Arabic Cultural Workshops for our members and members of the general public. Four of our most popular workshops so far, drew over 150 combined guests from a diverse mix of cultural backgrounds.

The cultural workshops support ALCASA’s mission to actively promote harmony, cultural awareness, and respect for cultural diversity by providing opportunities for South Australians of Arabic and non-Arabic backgrounds to celebrate the best of the Middle East.

In April this year, adults and children get together to explore a range of traditional board games from backgammon طاولة الزهر, to chess شطرنج, cards لعب الورق, barjees برجيس, knuckles الزقطة أو الزواقيط and some other popular games.

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In June, we enjoyed the musical talents of Charlie Yarak, a local musician and teacher. Charlie inspired the audience by showcasing the history and melody of a large range of traditional Arabic instruments. In July, we held an engaging and invigorating Arabic Dance workshop facilitated by the world-renowned Nayima Hassan. Nayima took adults and children through some basic dance moves and impressed the audience with some complex belly dancing involving scarves and swords.


In September, the ALCASA committee was overwhelmed by the communities response to our invitation to the ‘Arabic Delights’ workshop. Over 50 participants were able to sample the most delicious sweet and savoury treats from Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Morocco and Yemen.  The Adelaide City Council Minor Works building was filled with the amazing aroma, colour and flavour of food donated and made by committee members, family and friends.

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We are looking forward to a fun interactive presentation to be held on Sunday 20 November about the traditional Arabic clothing with Dr Minerva Nasser-Eddine, Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Adelaide and Liaison Officer at the Lebanese Emigration Research Center in Lebanon.

It has been really rewarding to see a community share and celebrate in our rich cultural history and traditions. Thank you for your support and enthusiasm and we look forward to offering a wide range on cultural workshops.

Please visit our eventbrite page for the next scheduled cultural presentations (

Hassan Mekawy