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In the year 2001, 146 children, 142 mothers and 65 fathers perished on board SIEV X.

I hadn’t planned on writing a raising great kids article about SIEV X, but on a recent weekend visit to Australia’s Capital City, Canberra, I was fortunate to stumble upon the SIEV X memorial.  It’s located at Weston Park, Yarralumla, on the banks of Lake Burley Griffin.  I was deeply moved by it and for hours afterward kept thinking about all the great kids and parents whose lives had been cut short so tragically.

What is SIEV X?

‘SIEV’ stands for Suspected Illegal Entry Vessel.   I believe the Roman numeral X means this vessel was the 10th vessel since counting began under this system.  Numbers are now at least three times that.

I haven’t written this post to express an opinion on asylum seekers, nor comment on how Governments around the World deal with asylum seekers.  But I will say that asylum seekers appear to take huge risks.

Why would families take such a risk?

I emigrated to Australia in 1992 with my husband and 8 month old son.  Almost 18 years later we are still here.  Why?  Because Australia is a fantastic place to live and perfect for raising great kids.  I believe asylum seekers take huge risks for the same reason.  They too want to live in a fantastic country, perfect for raising their children.  There is a difference though.  If my family and I had not emigrated to Australia, we would still have had a great life in England.  In many cases this would definitely not be the case for asylum seekers.  For some it could mean the difference between life and death, so taking the risk is worth it to them. Worth it to have the chance to live and work in a safe and prosperous country.  Worth it to have the chance of raising great kids.

Small Poles and Large Poles

Take a look at this photo:


Each memorial pole represents a person who died on SIEV X.  The smaller poles represent children, the larger poles adults.  The memorial is a shared effort by over 300 schools, churches and community groups across Australia.

Now take a look at this photo:


The poles forming a boat shape represent the actual size of SIEV X.  The vessel carrying all those people was only 22 meters long.  Just think about that.

By anyone’s reckoning, time spent on that vessel must have been terrible.  Yet, this is what those parents were willing to do to give themselves the best chance of raising great kids.  Perhaps I’d do the same.  I don’t know.

Australia the Lucky Country

Australia is often referred to as the lucky country – and there are plenty of other ‘lucky’ countries around the world.  But life isn’t so lucky for everyone.  Take a look at your great kids now and appreciate just how lucky you and they are.  And maybe take a moment to remember the mothers, fathers and great kids who weren’t so lucky and perished on board SIEV X in 2001.

If you find yourself in Canberra

If you ever visit Canberra, I recommend you take a look at the SIEV X memorial.   Like me, I think you’ll be glad you did.

Jan Littlehales

At Last! Law of Attraction and Goal Setting FOR KIDS! Click here to Learn More.

3 Responses to “Raising Great Kids – on board SIEV X”

  1. Thanks for this post.. I was unaware of this memorial. I honour the intent of these people who were desiring to be free. I will be visiting the site when I can.
    .-= jo carey-bradshaw´s last blog ..There is a Potent Way to Success =-.

  2. Hi Jo – thanks for your comment. Please let me know if you visit the memorial. I’d love to know what you think of it.

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