Upcoming events at Hadassah


Please join us to hear The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG speak on Is the United Nations the best chance for peace? The Tikkun Olam Award will be presented to Prof Les White AM, by the Hon Dame Marie Bashir AD CVO.

Date: Sunday, 27 August 2017

Time: 8.00pm

Venue: National Council of Jewish Women Centre, 111 Queen Street, Woolahra, Sydney.

Cost: $20 ($15 for concession holders)

Keynote Speaker:
The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG
Tikkun Olam Award presenter:
Prof. The Hon Dame Marie Bashir AD CVO
Tikkun Olam Award recipient:
Professor Les White AM

About the speakers and the awards

The Honourable Michael Kirby AC, CMG, is one of Australia’s leading jurists and a former judge of the High Court of Australia.

His topic will be ‘Is the United Nations Our Best Chance for Global Peace?’

Since his retirement from the High Court in 2009, after 13 years of distinguished service, Michael Kirby has been busy with numerous international tasks, including his work as chairman of the UN Human Rights Council’s commission of inquiry on crimes against humanity in North Korea (2013-14). More recently, he has been a member (and chairman of the technical advisory group) of the High Level Panel established by the former UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, on universal access to essential healthcare (2015-16). The report was delivered in September 2016.

Justice Kirby said:

One of the report’s goals is that by 2030, people everywhere will have access to essential life-saving medical technologies. That goal will not be achieved if people in poorer countries cannot afford even the most basic medicines on the UN essential medicines list.


The work of the High Level Panel looks at the problem of delivering healthcare in a global context. Hadassah responds to the same challenge in a practical and immediate context. It reaches out to help the most disadvantaged and to do so without discrimination.


We must think globally. But at home and abroad, like Hadassah, we must be willing and able to act locally, including in the most challenging of healthcare circumstances. Nothing less will fulfil the obligations and promises of universal human rights.

The 2017 Tikkun Olam Award will be presented to Professor Les White AM, Emeritus Professor at the School of Paediatrics at the University of NSW. In September 2010, he was appointed the inaugural NSW Chief Paediatrician. The award will be presented by Professor Marie Bashir AD, CVO, the former Governor of NSW, Chief Patron of Project Rozana, a former practising psychiatrist and a recipient of the Hadassah Tikkun Olam Award in 2013.

The President of Hadassah Australia, Ron Finkel AM, says the Tikkun Olam Award is given to an individual who represents the finest qualities and traditions of medicine, science and humanity. The name is taken from the Mishnah, a body of classical rabbinic teachings which are sacred to the Jewish religion. It is a concept defined by acts of kindness performed to perfect or repair the world. He said:

Professor Les White is eminently qualified to receive the award and is a very worthy recipient.


He has contributed to the betterment of society in Australia and overseas, and his example is a tribute to the academic and clinical excellence of Australian scientists and researchers.

The Executive Director of Hadassah Australia, Alissa Woolf, paid tribute to the keynote speaker who is passionate about human rights and recognised internationally for his advocacy on behalf of disenfranchised communities.

Michael Kirby is an eminent Australian who has dedicated his life to justice and human rights. It is a privilege to have him deliver the Hadassah Australia Oration, which has become a platform for some of Australia’s most distinguished communal leaders.

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