Georges River Council will collaborate with the City of Sydney to create a new Museum of Chinese in Australia.
Councillor Nancy Liu put forward a Notice of Motion at the October 26 council meeting in support of the establishment of the new Museum of Chinese in Australia (MOCA) in Haymarket, Sydney.
The museum wil have particular significance for the Georges River area where almost 30 per cent of the populatoin have Chinese heritage.
Georges River also hosts one of largest Lunar New Year festivals in NSW outside of the Sydney CBD.
Councillor Liu explained how the council could collaborate with the City of Sydney to offer curatorial advice and loan objects, artefacts and oral histories from the Hurstville Museum and Gallery.
"We as a community have a very strong identity related to Chinese migration," Councillor Liu said.
"More than a quarter of Georges River residents have Chinese ancestry, and Mandarin and Cantonese are the two most spoken languages other than English at home," she said.
"The Georges River's unique Chinese culture has previously been showcased through collections in the Hurstville Museum and Gallery, and I understand that we are working in partnership with Create NSW to develop a new exhibition exploring Chinese migration in the Georges River area for 2021.
"The development and opening of the MOCA will provide additional resources for our local community and allow for possible partnership opportunities with the Hurstville Museum and Gallery in the future," she said.
Chair of the Board at the MOCA, Dr John Yu supported Councillor Liu's Motion and spoke about the important role Council can play in the museum's development.
"As the Georges River population with Chinese heritage approaches 30 per cent representing one of the biggest Chinese communities in Australia, I really welcome the support of Georges River Council through its promotion of MOCA, encouraging the local community to contribute to this project and celebrate the contribution of Chinese immigrants in Australian history," Dr Yu said.
City of Sydney Councillor Craig Chung thanked Councillor Liu for bringing the MOCA to the attention of Georges River Council.
"The next phase of MOCA is to encourage all Australians to support and engage with the organisation to develop a sustainable fundraising platform and to commence the exhibition of the history of Chinese in Australia," Councillor Chung said.
"I welcome the support of Georges River Council through its promotion of MOCA and curatorial support," he added.
Council currently hosts a collection of objects and oral histories exploring the rich migrant history and living culture of Chinese Australians in the Georges River area, including the MAGNA award-winning permanent exhibition St George Stories: people - places - community which explores the diverse communities who have helped shaped the Georges River Region. The MOCA will encourage Georges River residents with Chinese ancestry to explore their roots.
MOCA will be located in the former Haymarket Library within the Sydney CBD and Georges River Council is encouraging members of the community to donate to the project by visiting: https://australianculturalfund.org.au/projects/museum-of-chinese in-australia-moca/