Author Archives: Grace Demaio

Another Great Celebration – International Women’s Day 2017

Co.As.It. Community Services celebrated yet another successful International Women’s Day Morning tea, last Saturday 4 March at the Victoria Park Golf Complex. This year Co.As.It supported the global theme “Be Bold For Change” calling on the community to help forge a better working world – a more gender inclusive world.

The event reminded community members that each one of us can be a leader within our own spheres of influence and that taking bold pragmatic action can be the first step in accelerating gender parity. Hosted this year by Channel 7’s The Great South East, Damien Anthony Rossi and The Voice Australia’s Naomi Price, the morning tea brought together over 250 women, recognising and celebrating their unique contributions, whether it be in their professional or personal lives.

From upper left: Kate Zegenhagen, Cr Vicki Howard, Naomi Price and Damien Anthony Rossi From lower left: COM.IT.ES President Mariangela Stagnitti, Co.As.It. Director Dina Ranieri and Community Care Manager PHN Brisbane North, Michele Smith

Distinguished guests on the day included, Councillor for Central Ward, Vicky Howard, President of COM.IT.ES. for Qld and NT, Mariangela Stagnitti and Manager Community Care PHN Brisbane North, Michele Smith. Apologies were read out by Co.As.It. Director Dina Ranieri on behalf of Hon Grace Grace MP, Hon Shannon Fentiman MP and Senator Hon Concetta Fierravanti-Wells who sent through a video message addressed to all guests celebrating International Women’s Day.

From left: Sonia Gold Dooney from Petrol and Naomi Price

Fashions from Petrol Paddington elegantly graced the runway once again for a fabulous fashion show. Conducted by Petrol owner Sonia Gold Dooney, the latest on style trends walked the catwalk showcasing a mixture of day wear evening wear and glamour. This year’s guests were encouraged to share the International Women’s Day message on social media with the help of a fun photo corner set up with various props. It was great to see the support and engagement from the audience for this important cause towards equality.

The highlight of the event was of course the drawing of the raffle prizes. Each year Co.As.It. is overwhelmed by the generous support from businesses and individuals donating a prize to help raise funds for their Aged Care Program.

Co.As.It. would like to give a special thanks to its major sponsors, Petrol in Paddington for the fashion show parade, Mt Thompson Memorial Gardens for the lovely flower centrepieces and Italiquore Brands Internationale for the flowing prosecco during the day.

Thank you to all the individuals and business who supported our annual event:

Blue Illusion, Cr Norm Wyndham, Uno Salon, Deep Grey, Brazilian Beauty Clayfield, Ultra Painting, Diva Hair Ascot, Robertson Gardens, Dello Mano, Hon. Grace Grace MP, Azentro, Peter Russo MP, Crown Family Jewellers, Ink for Hair, Shine Beauty Salons, Ella Bachè New Farm, Jeanette Thomas Nail Studio and Flora di Lizio.

Our fantastic raffle prizes

International Women’s Day 2017

Co.As.It’s Annual International Women’s Day celebration will be taking place on Saturday 4 March.
The Morning Tea event will be held at the Victoria Park Golf Complex from 10.30am –2.30pm. The event is a great way to celebrate and recognise women in our community along with their many achievements, both personal and professional. Co.As.It. is very excited to present this year’s hosts, Damien Anthony Rossi from Ch7’s The Great South East and The Voice Australia’s Naomi Price. Be sure to expect lots of fashion, prizes and a lovely ‘girls day out’.
Seats are limited, to book your table contact Co.As.It. on 3262 5755.

The Details
Event: International Women’s Day Morning Tea
Time and Date: Saturday 4 March 2017, 10.30am – 2.30pm
Where: Victoria Park Golf Complex, Herston Road, HERSTON
Tickets: $65

A Night on Broadway

Co.As.It. celebrated its 10th Annual Community Concert last Saturday 3 December at the Multicultural Community Centre at Newmarket. Held under the patronage of the Italian Consulate for Queensland and Northern Territory, the event had its 350 guests singing, dancing and giving standing ovations. Produced by D&G Entertainment, “A Night on Broadway- With an Italian Twist”, filled the theatre with Broadway hits, soaring arias and Italian classics, all performed by the stellar cast of Popera Classics. Master of Ceremonies for the afternoon, Hon. Teresa Gambaro welcomed distinguished guests including Italian Consul for Qld and NT, Dott. Ludovico Carlo Camussi, Councillor for McDowall, Norm Wyndham, and Member of the Italian Senate and part of the Democratic Party, Senator Francesco Giacobbe. It was great to see the support of the Italian community still so strong with many Italian Associations’ representatives also in attendance. At the end of the first act, community members were able to enjoy a chat amongst friends and some delicious chocolate krapfens, generously donated by Visco – Selected Fine Foods. The second act followed with more outstanding performances and concluded with a special grand-finale, a tribute to the late great tenor Luciano Pavarotti. After encore performances and standing ovations, the Hon. Teresa Gambaro was happy to announce the eight lucky winners who walked away with one of the generously donated raffle prizes. All guests were later invited downstairs to meet and greet the cast, concluding the evening with a slice of panettone and a glass of spumante, proudly sponsored by Italiquore Brands Internationale. Each year Co.As.It. is proud to be able to give something back to the community, always keeping entry tickets to a minimal so everyone is able to share in the celebration. Behind this great organisation stands its dedicated staff who, even this year, contributed their time to ensure the event was a success.
Co.As.It. would like to give special thanks to the following generous sponsors:
Italiquore Brands Internationale
Visco – Selected Fine Foods
Merthyr Village the Heart of New Farm
Basile Imports
Prime Foot Care Provider
K.M. Smith Funerals
Putia Pure Food
Merlo Coffee
Ciao Gelato

From left: Co.As.It. Director-Dina Ranieri, Co.As.It. President-Cav. Nereo Brezzi, Italian Consul for Qld and NT-Dott. Ludovico Carlo Camussi, Member of the Italian Senate and part of the Democratic Party-Sen. Francesco Giacobbe, Hon. Teresa Gambaro and Councillor for McDowall-Cr. Norm Wyndham.


Stay connected – with our computer technology classes

Stay connected and learn new skills with our Computer Technology Classes. The new course will begin next year, Thursday 19 January 2017. Every Thursday you’ll have the opportunity to learn valuable computer skills that you’ll computer-classee-2be able to apply in your everyday life. If you feel you don’t know much about computers, or maybe you would like to pick up some new skills and navigate with a bit more ease,  make sure to book your place by contacting reception on 3262 5755. Taking a weekly course is a great way to stay mentally active, while also socialising and remaining connected within the community.
Click on the flyer below for further details.
FLYER (pdf)

Start date: 19 January 2017
Location: Italian Language Centre, 42 Newbery Street, NEWMARKET
Time: Thursday, 10.00am -12.00pm
Cost: $5 per class
To book: Contact Co.As.It. on 3262 5755

* PLEASE NOTE: Computer classes now run every Friday, starting from 26 May 2017

Annual Community Concert 2016


Co.As.It.’s annual community concert will be taking place on Saturday 3 December 2016 at the Diverciti Centre at Newmarket. This years’ concert “A Night on Broadway – With an Italian Twist!” presents the ultimate excitement, passion and intensity of Popera in a sensational showcase with Popera Classics performing a dazzling cornucopia of Broadway blockbusters and classics from the world of opera, musical theatre and modern Popera Classics. “A Night on Broadway – With An Italian Twist!” promises something for everyone with magnificent musical performances from a selection of Broadway’s biggest blockbusters including; Jekyll & Hyde, West Side Story, Wicked, Rent, Cats, Evita, Les Miserables and The Phantom of the Opera. Our Italian Twist will also take us on a journey of soaring arias, classics and hits such as; Libiamo Nel Caliti, La Donna e Mobile, Volare and The Prayer culminating in a moving finale and homage to the late great Luciano Pavarotti. Book your tickets today by contacting Co.As.It. on 3262 5755.

Event: Annual Community Concert “A Night on Broadway – With and Italian Twist!”

Time and Date: Saturday 3 December 2016, 2.30pm – 6.00pm

Where: Diverciti Centre/Multicultural Community Centre, 23 Foster St, Newmarket

Tickets: $15 (includes refreshments: spumante and panettone)
To book contact Co.As.It. on 3262 5755



Italian Migration Exhibition – L’Ultimo Saluto

ultimo-salutoCo.As.It. Community Services is proud to present, with the cooperation of the National Archives Australia, “L’Ultimo Saluto” (The Last Goodbye) Italian migration exhibition. Share the history and experiences of this vibrant group through photographs which portray the vivid hopes and visions of a displaced generation, one that has now left an indelible presence in Queensland’s way of life.‘L’ultimo Saluto” will be a photographic record of the experiences of Italian migrants through the period of mass migration and will include documents relating to prisoners of war, internment, recruitment of workers for the sugar cane industry and proxy brides.

Co.As.It. will also be presenting a second exhibition, “Proxy Brides” which will showcase one girl’s journey to her new husband in Australia.  In the 1950’s it was not uncommon to marry a man or woman by proxy one had not met. A unique insight into the lives of many Italian migrants who took the journey across oceans for a new start.

Both exhibitions will be showcased at Festitalia – Italian Festival on Sunday 9 October 2016 at Spencer park, 42 Newbery St, Newmarket, 11am -5pm. The exhibit will be displayed inside the Italian Language Centre.

Festitalia – Italian Festival, Sun 9 Oct 2016


Sunday 9th October will showcase Queensland’s official Italian Festival “Festitalia”. From 11am – 5pm, Spencer Park at Newmarket will bring you “The passion of Italy” with authentic Italian wood-fired pizzas, pasta, international performers, traditional Italian dances, pizza acrobatics and pizza-making masterclasses, rides, Nonni’s pasta-making kitchen and ‘Italian Bubbles’ masterclasses! The festival will host various exhibitions as well as a talent competition and will not fall short on entertainment with Aria winning artist Cosima De Vito, MKR’s Luciano & Martino (AKA The Italianos) and Italian hit performers, Xpresso Duo.  The internationally acclaimed Sbandieratori Sansepolcro will also be performing. Tickets are on sale at .

Co.As.It. will be among the stallholders at the event, showing our support for the Italian Culture in Brisbane and our Italian community members. If you are interested in immersing yourself even further into the Italian culture, or perhaps just brushing up on your pronunciation, be sure to check out the The Italian Language Centre  (ILC), located right next to the park on Newbery Street.

Buon divertimento a tutti!


September is Dementia Awareness Month


Did you know that September is Dementia Awareness Month?
The theme this year is ” You are not alone” and it aims to highlight the supports and services available for people with dementia and their carers as well as encourage the general public to become more dementia aware.
To help generate dementia awareness Healthdirect Australia ( the national health information and advice service funded by the Australian Government) has published a page of informative and educational videos exploring dementia, its symptoms and effects, caring for someone with dementia and respite care. You can view these videos and help spread awareness by following the link below: 

If you would like know more and support the fight against dementia you can also visit
Alzheimer’s Australia at

Seniors Week – Health and Wellness Morning Tea

For Seniors Week this year Co.As.It. hosted their free Annual Community Engagements at their Social Activities Centres at Stafford Heights and Acacia Ridge. The two ‘Health and Wellness Morning Teas” which took place on Wednesday 17th and Thursday 18th August 2016 respectively, offered presentations, interactive Q&A’s and engaging demonstrations from professionals in various industries including nutrition, podiatry, tai chi, beauty andPicture1 fashion. Brisbane City Council and Australian Hearing also participated at the events with all the professionals offering insight into their many services and how these could improve not only your health but also your quality of life.
The Social Activities Centres provided a delicious morning tea for all guests and speakers, with freshly cooked muffins on arrival followed by deliciously prepared sandwiches and mini quiches mid morning. The events were highly informative  providing key facts as well as useful tips  that could be applied in daily life. The core Picture2theme of the day,  exploring the balance and connection between health and wellness and how it can be achieved with small changes and a proactive attitude, proved useful to many. Free hearing tests, beauty samples and cooking demonstrations added a great element of interaction for all guests.

Our Gold Coast Office had their own Celebrations for Seniors Week with a beautiful Luncheon at the Italo-Australian Club on Thursday 18th August 2016. Around 200 guests attended the event from all over the Gold Coast. Guests enjoyed great live entertainment, dancing and fabulous food. Many lucky winners took home a great raffle prize with more than 35 fantastic prizes donated by generous local businesses. A celebration luncheon truly enjoyed by all.

All our current and future events can be viewed in our Events page.


Memory Walk for Alzheimer’s Australia

On Sunday 19th June Co.As.It. participated in Gold Coast’s first ‘Memory Walk & Jog” organised by Alzheimer’s Australia to raise funds and awareness for dementia.
112modMore than 66,000 Queenslanders suffer from the disease and Co.As.It. was happy to show their support.  Over 20 staff members and their families participated in the 2.5km and 5km course, enjoying a great day out packed with entertainment and stunning ocean views.
If you would like to know more about dementia and Alzheimer’s Australia visit their website at  or to make a donation visit their fundraising page