HIỆP HỘI TƯƠNG TRỢ GIA ĐÌNH CÔNG GIÁO VIỆT NAM

Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network Inc


About Us

" He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God. "
(Micah 6,8)

The Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network Inc. (ViCaFaMAN) is a social and charitable association based on Christian faith, consisting of Vietnamese individuals and families, whether Catholic or non-Catholic, sharing Catholic values.
ViCaFaMAN is a non-political and not-for-profit organisation, operated within the State of Victoria, Australia. Its main aim is to encourage the members to support each other to achieve a peaceful and happy life in this second homeland and serve the community, in particular to the sick and elderly members at home, hospital and nursing home.

The organisation is an official member of the Catholic Social Services Victoria (CSSV), a peak body for Catholic community service works in Victoria with a mission to assist the Catholic Church in Victoria to fulfil the gospel imperatives to: “stand with and serve the poor, disadvantaged and marginalised; and work for a just, equitable and compassionate society”.

It was established from a meeting of the 12 founding members with Rev Fr Peter Nguyen Van Cao SJ at the parish house of St Ignatius’s church on 17 January 2011. The association was officially introduced to the Vietnamese community in Victoria, in particular to the Catholic Vietnamese people, on 19/3/2011  (St Joseph’s Day). It was unexpected the growth in which the association has achieved. The association  acquired 1484 current members by the end of 2014-2015, including:


  • 406 members in the age group of 70-85 (27.18%)
  • 931 members in the age group of 50-69 (62.32%)
  • 157 members in the age group of 20-49 (10.51%)

By religion, we have 1084 catholic members (73%) and 410 non-catholic members (27%)

Looking back at the history of ViCaFaMAN, we can see it was through a small group of Catholic  Vietnamese people who committed themselves to be commissioned to be witnesses for the LOVE of Jesus Christ by volunteering their time and talent for the association that it fruitfully blossomed. With their determination and devotion to God, for more than 4 years we can all see that He will also send you rain for the seed you sow in the ground, and the food that comes from the land will be rich and plentiful. In that day your cattle will graze in broadmeadows” (Isaia 30:23).



The 12 founding members were:

1 Mrs Nguyễn Phương Châm 7 Mrs Bùi Thị Nữ
2 Mr Nguyễn Chính 8 Mr Nguyễn Văn Hinh
3 Mr Mai Văn Hội 9 Mr Lưu Ngọc Hoàng
4 Mr Châu Xuân Hùng 10 Mr Phạm Ngọc Lâm
5 Mr Nguyễn Hữu Lâm 11 Mr Nguyễn Xuân Nhượng
6 Mr Nguyễn Hoàng Sơn 12 Mr Nguyễn Xuân Tự

 The first Executive Committee (2011-2014) was selected by these founding members include:

1 President Mr Nguyễn Hoàng Sơn JP
2 Vice President – Internal Affairs: Mr Phạm Ngọc Lâm
3 Vice President – External Affairs: Mr Nguyễn Xuân Tự
4 General Secretary Mr Châu Xuân Hùng JP
5 Treasurer Mrs Nguyễn Phương Châm

On the 3rd September 2012 the Episcopal Vicar of Melbourne Archdiocese, Bishop Leslie Tomlison celebrated a Commissioning Mass and blessed all the members of the Administrative Council and the Executive Committee with a solemn rite, to send them forward to be willingly serve as disciples of Christ with an assignment to “Go forth in peace and love thy neighbour”.

In 2012, Rev Fr Peter Nguyen Van Cao SJ, our spiritual adviser, was transferred to another mission and replaced by Rev Fr Peter Tran Van Tro SJ. In 2014, with more responsibilities at his local parish in the role of an Assistant Parish Priest, Fr Tro SJ has since stopped his role as an official spiritual adviser for the Association.

Bishop Vincent Long OFMConv, Episcopal Vicar for Migrants in Melbourne, was kind enough to celebrate thanksgivings mass on 15/09/2012 and attended our 2012 AGM after that.

On 20 September 2014, the Second ViCaFaMAN Executive Committee for 2014-2017 was voted and approved by the participating members at the 2014 Annual General Meeting in Collingwood, Melbourne.

The members of the second Executive Committee (2014-2017) include:

1 President Mr Lê Quang Trung
2 Vice President – Internal Affairs: Mr Phạm Ngọc Lâm
3 Vice President – External Affairs: Mr Nguyễn Xuân Tự
4 General Secretary Mr Châu Xuân Hùng JP
5 Treasurer Mrs Nguyễn Phương Châm

 

ViCaFaMAN has organised regularly 4 thanksgivings masses in March, June, September and December every year at four different churches in Melbourne’s North, South, East and West for its members, families, friends and relatives.

In 2014-2015, we had thanksgiving masses at:

  • St Joseph’s Church, Collingwood, celebrated by Rev Fr Peter Hoang Kim Huy dbs & Rev Fr Hoang Van Quang SJ (20 September 2014)
  • St Vincent Liem Centre, Flemington, celebrated by Rev Fr Tran Ngoc Tân SSS.
    After mass was the celebration of Christmas (27 December 2014)
  • Holy Name’s Church, Reservoir celebrated by Rev Fr Vu Nhật Thang.
    After mass, we have celebrated the ‘2015 Harmony Day’ with Vietnamese music, dances and foods. (21 March 2015)
  • St Anthony’s, Noble Park, celebrated by Rev Fr Tran Nguyen Lam.
    After mass, we celebrated 40 years of the Vietnamese community settling in Australia (20 June 2015)

One of the key activities of VicaFaMAN is a Bereavement Fund for its members. Each time the Association has a deceased member, depend on the joining time, all of its current members will contribute an amount of $5 or $10 to this Bereavement Fund, and up to 90% of this collected fund will be given to the deceased member’s family to financially support them toward the funeral cost. 

Up until 30/6/2015, we had 21 deceased members with $190,585 collected through members’ contribution to support these deceased members’ families in their difficult time. The money is not a form of funeral insurance, but more a gesture members to their support each other in a practical way in this second homeland.


Our Purposes


  1. To support all levels of the Catholic Church to:
    • Provide information of workshops / seminars focusing on Holy Bible, Marriage, Fostering Children, to enhance faith, family and social life for members.
    • Encourage members to participate and support Catholic priests to organise retreats or spiritual exercises so as to maintain and enhance spiritual life for members.
    • Encourage young people to participate in all activities and study the Bible in order to serve the Catholic Church and others effectively.
    • Develop cultural programs with the focus on serving the Community, especially God’s people.
  2. To support needed members and to visit the deceased members’ families.
  3. To visit the sick and the elderly members at home, hospital or nursing homes.
  4. To provide information on social welfare, immigration and other human development programs in order to enrich a peaceful and harmony life of members in the Australian Multicultural society.





Rules of ViCaFaMAN


   Rules of ViCaFaMAN   





Kairos Catholic Journal


THE Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network provides a strong example of the power of community.

Before 2011 there were various services in Victoria for the Vietnamese community but there was a lack of a central organisation and many Vietnamese were still disadvantaged in society.


A group of 12 in the community saw the need and held a meeting at St Ignatius in Richmond to discuss ways to bring together social services for the Vietnamese in Victoria, estimated in 2008 at almost 60,000 by the Victorian Multicultural Commission. The result was the formation of the Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network.

The group elected Hoang-son Nguyen as president. A worthy choice, Hoang-son is himself an immigrant who came to Australia first by boat to Indonesia in 1983 then by plane to Melbourne in May of 1984. It was his own experience with the isolation, fear and loneliness he experienced upon arriving in Melbourne that compelled him to start work as a migration agent and help others like himself settle in Victoria. He now also works as a pastoral worker at St Ignatius church, the main office for the network.

Although the Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network is firmly grounded in Catholic beliefs, the organisation aims to help all Vietnamese families achieve a peaceful and happy family life. The services range from social events for the elderly to pastoral training and spiritual retreats. They also include marriage services and visitation in hospitals and nursing homes. Hoang-son himself recently visited an elderly woman in St Vincent’s Hospital.

“Many of our members are isolated with no family here in Australia,” says Hoang-son, which is why the network also helps with migration and reuniting families. The purpose of all services is to enhance the members’ faith, family, and social life.

So far there are more than 700 members in the network. Recently, when a member of the community died, all the members were notified with a letter and many of the members donated $10. The result was that the family of the departed had $7000 to cover funeral expenses. “Imagine what we could do if we had 1000 or 2000 members,” Hoang-son said.


The Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network is different from other social service organisations as its main source of support comes from within the membership.

Being member-supported creates a strong sense of accountability and togetherness, which empowers the Vietnamese community. Though anyone is welcome to join, Catholic teachings and principles form the foundation for the work. As Hoang-son says, “It’s about love. We may have different histories, languages, or skin colour, but love brings us together and commits us to action.”

In regards to last year’s Bible seminars and spiritual retreats, Hoang-son says, “We hold them to increase people’s knowledge about God and the Gospel. We have to understand someone to love them.”

Hoang-son stressed the importance of this as the network looks to add youth spiritual retreats and Bible studies to its services next year. “How can they love what they do not know?”

The future looks promising for this organisation in its infancy. The network’s main focus for 2013 is to expand its range of services. It has also opened offices in St Albans, Springvale and Meadow Heights to reach Vietnamese throughout Victoria.



Kairos, December 2012




Our Mission

The Vietnamese Catholic Family Mutual Assistance Network Inc is a social and charitable association based on Christian faith, consisting of Vietnamese individual and family, whether Catholic or non-Catholic, sharing Catholic values in helping each other to achieve a happy and peaceful life in this second homeland and serve the community, in particular to the sick and elderly members at home, hospital and nursing home.

Mơ Ước

Mơ Ước của Hiệp Hội Tương Trợ Gia Đình Công Giáo Việt Nam là đồng hành với cộng đồng Dân Chúa, kết hợp với mọi người không phân biệt tôn giáo để cùng tiến bước dấn thân phục vụ tha nhân trên căn bản tinh thần Phúc Âm của Chúa Giêsu Kitô để “thực thi công bằng, quý yêu nhân nghĩa và khiêm nhường bước đi với Thiên Chúa.” (Micah 6.8).

Get in Touch

   vicafaman@vicafaman.org.au
   www.facebook.com/vicafaman

 PO Box 9, Richmond VIC 3121


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