the dance of the ink riddled fingers

dentention within me

Posted in handfuls of ambition, how was your day?, thought spills by enisea on 03/11/2010

I’m here again so quickly only because there are better places for me to be and more productive things I could be doing – like those 2 assignments I haven’t really touched.  I’ve come to the conclusion that I achieve nothing – or near to nothing academic at home…

I began looking up local holiday getaways. I’ve been thinking of doing a solitary thing for a couple of days – someplace nice, to myself – excluding myself from the world, from technology and overcoming the boredom of a sparsity of “buzz” to force myself into the focus of a woman who loves God and cares about others by starving herself of daily attention.  That thought evolved into searching for volunteering jobs for camps or events for children, preferably underprivileged or unloved. Nothing like a bit of beauty to make one appreciate life and see blessing through humble perspective.   This then changed to shallowly researching detention centres…

and this: I want to visit a detention centre.


I’ve wanted to for a little while now and now more than anything. What with job prospects seemingly elusive and applications untouched, clouds of uncertainty brew over which to apply for, which I actually want to pursue: full-time, part-time, primary school, kindergarten, sessional, church, casual, relief teaching, teaching abroad (Japan, Europe, South America)… and somehow, somehow, teaching at a detention centre became an option.

HAHA, I speak as though I am free to. I am not yet even a confirmed graduate-to-be (though my graduation date is Dec 14th). I’ve two assignments and 2 exams to pass.  It’s not that I plan to fail them. But I am familiar with my habits of neglect during times when I cannot afford to…

I digress. For those unfamiliar (like myself) with the “system” of detention and or anything not plastered on the news during australian media’s occasional field-day controversies (less frequent than celebrity news).
There are six:

  • Christmas Island Immigration Detention Centre
  • Maribyrnong Immigration Detention Centre
  • Northern Immigration Detention Centre
  • Perth Immigration Detention Centre
  • Villawood Immigration Detention Centre
  • Curtin Immigration Detention Centre

Further facilities (excluding community detention) include:

  • Perth Immigration Residential Housing
  • Sydney Immigration Residential Housing
  • Brisbane Immigration Transit Accommodation
  • Melbourne Immigration Transit Accommodation

Sure, a quick visit to the department of immigration and citizenship told me so. 

So of the ten current facilities (not including community detentions – which I perceive as a little more complicated), 2 are Victorian: the Maribyrnong Immigration Detention Centre (MIDC) and Melbourne Immigration Transit Accommodation (MITA). Now originally I thought that visiting MIDC would be preferable, since their capacity for people is greater, hence would give me a broader picture. However, although my visit is curious about the treatment of humanity, it is the children I am interested in.  So what intrigued and puzzled me was the statistic (apparently updated weekly) most frequently published as at the 30th September (2010) identifying that MIDC accommodated 78 men, 18 women…and no children. In fact, NONE of the actual detention centres accommodated children and only half of them accommodated women (Villawood: 22, Perth, 1 and MIDC, 18) compared to hundreds to thousands (Christmas Island) of men.   Now here’s where the statistic stirred my curiosity, of MITA’s capacity to accommodate “30 people with the ability to expand by a further 30”, there was stated: only one man, no women and 44 children.  This was starkly contrasting to the other state Immigration Residential Housing and Immigration Transit Accommodation.

So now I want to visit MITA.  Though as far as I’m concerned, visiting is for those who have somebody to visit… of whom I have none.

Now what? And what do I expect to achieve? What if I am granted entry? And what if I am not? What do I want to see? What do I hope to do?  What if nothing occurs? What if I fall in love with the children? What could I do about it?  What if? What? If?  Whatever?

My assignment has not written itself yet. I plan to despair about it tomorrow.  Tomorrow, I won’t make the same mistake by staying home. Tomorrow I’m going to start ONE of my assignments. Tomorrow I’ll try not to dream, it’s not good for my concentration or my academics.

I'd love escape right now.

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