Meet an Australian Migrant and Refugee
An Award Winning Artist and one of Australia’s best loved Entertainers
After surviving two pirate attacks on a boat travelling from Vietnam and then spending 7 months in a Malaysian refugee camp, Anh Do arrived in Australia.
Determined to get his family out of poverty and buy his mother a house, Anh began studying Law and Business at UTS.
However Anh turned down offers of a law career and instead chose to focus on stand up comedy.
Anh took every job opportunity he could get which included hosting boxing tournaments and spruiking fruit and vegetables in shopping malls.
In 2000 when Anh was only 23, he finally saved up enough money to put a deposit on a house for his mother, ”We all cried” he said.
After winning countless comedy awards and appearing in many of Australia’s beloved television shows such as Rove Live, The Footy Show and Dancing with the Stars, Anh took his hand to film producing and writing.
In 2010, Anh published a memoir called The Happiest Refugee which won many awards including Australian Book of the year in 2011.
In the book Anh explains how he and his family came close to death while battling hunger, dehydration and disease on his voyage to Malaysia. It goes on to explain how he has become one of Australia’s most loved entertainers.
Fans of Anh can currently watch him on Channel Ten on the television show Long Lost Families, where he assists in reuniting lost family members with each other.
Judy Cassab, was born in 1920 in Vienna.
As a young, Jewish woman she escaped the Holocaust by assuming the identity of her German maid. After losing her family in Nazi concentration camps, Judy arrived in Australia in 1951 with her husband and two sons.
Living in Bondi with Hungarian migrants, Judy and her husband had a lack of funds however her husband encouraged her to pursue her passion of painting.
Judy followed her passions and before long she was a media favourite.
Prizes and solo exhibitions soon arrived and Judy could afford a flat and a housekeeper for her family. She became wanted internationally and began painting for British, Indian and Thai royalty.
Judy was the only woman, migrant and artist on the Advisory Council to establish Australia’s Honours System.
In addition to being one of Australia’s most acclaimed portraitists she was the first woman to win the Archibald prize twice.
Judy Cassab died on 3 November 2015 but left behind a legacy in which she was an admired artist and in the words of The National Gallery of Australia (NGA) director Dr Gerard Vaughan “a major part of the Sydney art world”
Despite experiencing some tragic beginnings, many migrants and refugees bring their talents, passions and dreams with them to Australia.
Talents, passions and dreams that have contributed to making Australia the unique, magical and thriving
country that it is.