The Governor bakes for charity

May 1, 2012 by Community Editor
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Sydney’s Yeshiva Centre’s “Our Big Kitchen” in Bondi was recently the scene of a student demonstration – one of interfaith solidarity.

The Governor bakes biscuits

Governor Marie Bashir receives a gift from Laurence Muskitta and Louise Castle

The Chancellor of Sydney University, New South Wales Governor Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, presided over a joint gathering of the University’s Multi-faith Chaplaincy and the student-run Interfaith Council.

“Sydney University has a proud record of interfaith dialogue and co-operation,” said Rabbi Eli Feldman, Director of Young Adult Chabad and Sydney University’s Jewish Chaplain. “The Chancellor, Chaplains and students of the Interfaith Council were very excited at the opportunity to visit the kitchen and work together for a good cause.”

Professor Bashir put on an apron and joined with the attendees in the crowded kitchen to bake Anzac biscuits – made according to her own recipe – for sale on campus in aid of the St George Housing Student Education Bursary, providing financial assistance to fund education costs for underprivileged students.

Rev Dr Rowan Kemp, one of the Anglican Chaplains at Sydney University, addressed the assembled about the work of the Multifaith Chaplaincy and formally introduced the Governor.

Visibly moved by the occasion, the Governor delighted the gathering by stating that,“I never feel more at home than when I am here at Our Big Kitchen. The spirit of friendship and harmony between members of all faiths coming together for a common good makes me immensely proud and is a remarkable example for all of humanity”.  Her Excellency, who in the Governor-General’s absence was also serving as Administrator of the Commonwealth, noted with a smile that she extended thanks and greetings “on behalf of all the people of Australia”.

Laurence Muskitta and Louise Castle, co-ordinators of the University’s Interfaith Council, made a presentation to Her Excellency of a fascinating book on Interfaith Dialogue.

The event was attended by Cr John Wakefield, mayor of Waverley, and councillors from across the spectrum of political affiliations, including independents and representatives from the Labor, Liberal and Greens parties.

The bi-partisan support was also reflected on a State Government level, with the presence of The Hon Marie Ficarra MLC, Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier and a prominent member of the Liberal Party in the upper House of NSW Parliament, as well as Mr Robert Furolo MP, Member for Lakemba, Shadow Minister for Citizenship and Communities and a Member of the Labor Party in the Lower House of NSW Parliament.

Also in attendance were Sydney University Deputy Vice Chancellor Professor Ann Brewer, Hillel Directors Nikki Dunn and Talia Wiseman, CEO of St George Community Housing Nazha Saad and a number of honoured Rabbis including Rabbi Pinchus Feldman OAM Dean and Spiritual Leader of the Yeshiva Centre, Rabbi Dovid Slavin Director of Our Big Kitchen, Rabbi Mendel Kastel Director of the Jewish House Crisis Centre, Rabbi Yosef Feldman of Southern Sydney Synagogue, Rabbi Zalman Kastel Director of “Together for Humanity”, Rabbi Chaim Ingram, Honorary Secretary of the Rabbinical Council of NSW, Rabbi Elimelech Levy Director of Chabad Youth NSW, Rabbi Shmueli Feldman General Manager of the Yeshiva Centre, and Rabbi Danny Yaffe, Assistant Director of Young Adult Chabad, who helped coordinate the event.

Hundreds of biscuits were then sold on campus by the Interfaith Council to students and faculty alike; including to Sydney University Deputy Vice Chancellor Professor Derrick Armstrong, who made sure to come along and support the cause.


Governor’s ANZAC Biscuits Recipe


One cup each SR flour, sugar, rolled oats and coconut

1 tablespoon golden syrup

1 small teaspoon carb soda

2 tablespoon boiling water

Pinch salt

Quarter lb margarine


Mix flour, sugar, rolled oats, coconut and salt together.

Melt shortening, syrup, soda and water, add to dry ingredients.

Place in spoonfuls on greaser slide.


Bake in moderate oven (140-150º) for 20 min approx (until golden brown)


Place on trays in very small spoonfuls – because they spread


Makes 4½ dozen



One Response to “The Governor bakes for charity”
  1. Bracha says:

    Sydney Jewish community is lucky to have such a special place of goodness like “our big kitchen!”
    Don’t think there is one in Melbourne. Well done!

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