I dodged a bullet. But most people don’t.
“Grief is not linear. It comes, and it goes, it can be all encompassing, it can be a fleeting moment…and it is different for every person.”
I grew up in a South Asian Muslim household where periods – and the pain I got alongside them – were never openly talked about.
I missed out on the joy of swimming carnivals as a kid, but here is how I am now making up for lost time.
“There is this idea that addiction is their fault — the rest of us can control it, but those people who can’t are mentally weak.”
When I sing with others, I feel the strength of banding together in times of uncertainty and change.
"Michael B. Jordan being named People’s Sexiest Man Alive is the *only* thing that’s made sense this year."

Voices video

The SBS Emerging Writers' Competition Winner 2020
Alana Hicks tells us about her winning entry for the SBS Emerging Writers' Competition 2020 and what writing the story meant to her.
  • Produced by SBS Voices


Eight Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander creatives share their reflections on the theme ‘Always Was, Always Will Be’.?

Curated by Mununjali author Ellen Van Neerven.?

To practice makarrata is to seek a full understanding of a conflict and, after this understanding has been reached, seek a settlement for both conflicting parties and...
For Aboriginal people, white people’s anger over having their movements limited, are somewhere between funny and scary. “Haven’t they had to wait for anything...
Nan decides to make her answer clear. “If you’re Aboriginal then you ARE Aboriginal. There’s no such thing as ‘how much?’”
It wasn’t until my degree in ancient history that I came to understand the erasure or invalidity of Indigenous peoples in institutions when the information of...
"The practice of dreaming our futures allows ourselves to be honest and vulnerable with what it is that we actually want and need."
That’s why “Always Was, Always Will Be” is so significant for us, because although intangible, this statement remains truthful and one power that no one can strip...
In 2011, Adam Thompson was one of the protesters who fought against construction at a Tasmanian Aboriginal heritage place of world significance. He tells the...

Read the winning entries

Of more than 2000 entries submitted to the inaugural Emerging Writers' Competition these are the top four prizewinning stories, as judged by Melissa Lucashenko and Benjamin Law.?


SBS Emerging Writers’ Competition Winner: Alana Hicks.


How it feels to be a First Nations person inside a colonial education system
Emerging Writers’ Competition Highly Commended: Amy Duong.
Emerging Writers’ Competition Highly Commended: Nakul Legha.
Four winners have been chosen from thousands of entries into the inaugural SBS Emerging Writers' Competition. Read more about their writing journey and what...


Addicted Australia?premieres Tuesday 10 November, 8.30pm on SBS and SBS On Demand. The four-part documentary series continues weekly on Tuesdays at 8.30pm and will be available with simplified Chinese and Vietnamese subtitles.

Join the conversation #AddictedSBS

I was still going to my new job; I was getting home safely, and I was having normal conversations with friends and colleagues. No one suspected that every time I went...
“There is this idea that addiction is their fault — the rest of us can control it, but those people who can’t are mentally weak.”
If you’re trying to overcome addiction, you don’t need to do it alone.
“A food addiction is almost more exhausting than the drug addiction – you can put the drugs and alcohol down but you can never put down food. You always have to...
Stick thin, sunken eyes, blistered sores, violent rages; how accurate our perceptions of ice addicts? We get the facts from a drug expert.
There is debate on what the most addictive substances are. So why the disparity and what can you do?
Being able to attend from the comfort of my couch has literally been a lifesaver, but for me online meetings miss a crucial ingredient important for my sobriety.



Beyond studies and research, we examine how our health impacts the rest of our lives.??

I looked at my beautiful baby and I cried about the unfairness of it all. Was I to blame? It should have been me who suffered, not him. Was this my punishment, what...
My mother taught me to cook. She was patient with me. She didn’t carry on if I didn’t get it right.
I have gone from being the one looked after (yes, even as a grown woman) to be the one to look after her.
The free YouTube dance-fitness class is a chaotic breed.
A Hula-Hoop basically makes standing exciting.
Besides affordability, there are other barriers that deter culturally and linguistically diverse Australians from addressing their mental health.
“Laughing yoga” is a growing trend in India that is helping victims of trauma find their way back to the light, after enduring the horrific practice of acid burn...

Culture & Society

Your stories. Your words.

Would you like to write for SBS Voices? Send us an email at voices@sbs.com.au?

Mum tells me of how she flew to Melbourne from Adelaide just to see me for five minutes before I flew away.
Some kids grow up in a family business and leave it behind, but for Amal Awad, her father’s video rental store sparked an enduring love of cinema.
It seems to get a run every time there's any kind of social upheaval and it's easiest to blame migrants who can't really argue back.
The #saymyname hashtag was sparked after Senator David Perdue made fun of Vice-Presidential candidate Kamala Harris' name.
"I need to report a hate crime."
For those who grew up in immigrant homes, scanning for sex-ed info from the grapevine or through the pages of Dolly magazine was part of coming-of-age.
“It is the closest to being pain free I have been since I was diagnosed,” she excitedly said. For her, this was an incredible reprieve from the constant pain she...


Celebrating the diversity of the LGBTIQ+ community in Australia.

Follow SBS Pride?on Facebook.?

Do you have a story to share? Email us at voices@sbs.com.au

"Prince single-handedly taught me that, as a (straight, cis) dude, I could be "feminine"/androgynous & still be sexy."
Actor Clea DuVall is writing and co-executive producing.
Back then, living a truer version of yourself was easier in the clouds than it was on solid ground, where there were serious, and often dangerous legal...
“From living in survival mode, I have a set of experiences that I think are helpful to share.”
According to a new study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association Neurology, lesbian, gay, and bisexual people experience migraines at a rate...
When tackling dysphoria, the solutions often only comprise of hormones and gender affirming surgery. For many trans people, these are not viable options due to...
Albertalli writes, “I’ve never kissed a girl. I never even realised I wanted to.” That’s how I felt when I came out – like people would question the validity of...

Sweatshop Collective

A partnership with Western Sydney writers’ collective?Sweatshop, now in its second year, showcases stories from diverse perspectives.?


Whilst many queer spaces centre sexual liberation, my birth mum maintains cultural values around sexual modesty.
Mixed heritage is a common reality for modern day Egyptians, who are as ethnically complex as our ancestor, Cleopatra. Yet, like the fabled Queen, we claim and...
Throughout my late teens and early 20s, the first response I usually got when I came out to people was, ‘What does your family think?’
Each cell of our body contains all the habit energies of all generations of ancestors.
Of all the Chens at Sydney Girls, it had to be Vivian and Alice. After what happened last week, I do not want to face them. I go straight into the first cubicle...
This is an excerpt from the author's contribution to the speculative fiction anthology, "After Australia".
Erin Molan’s comments about Pacific Islander names became news recently. It was not the first time writer Christine Afoa had heard names of people from her...

Emerging Asian-Australian Writers

Read stories about love, sexuality, family and mental health by up and coming Asian-Australian voices, in an essay series edited by Candice Chung.?

When my daughter was finally old enough to read my books, I gave her a copy of each one. I have never been more scared about a reader’s feedback my whole life.
Besides affordability, there are other barriers that deter culturally and linguistically diverse Australians from addressing their mental health.
It is a powerful feeling to not only buck the trend, but to undo any prejudice or expectation that I should follow suit in a traditional career path.
To Filipinos, the family tree is always filled with a few extra branches - and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Everything is on the table during our catch ups: Who is having sex whilst working from home? How is everyone coping with their kids? Who might be losing their job?
For many trans people, changing their name is an important part of embodying identity. But what if your name also carries your cultural heritage?
I’m beginning to say my name the way my mum utters it. I’m reclaiming my accent and it’s drawing me closer to my identity as Filipino-Australian.

Emerging Muslim women writers

Highlights from some of the most exciting emerging Muslim Australian writers.??

Growing up, I never saw anyone like me in the media or saw any (non-villainous) Muslim characters in TV shows or movies.
Black Lives Matter is forcing important conversations about race. But what we won’t voice, is that we too, the non-black Muslim community, have absorbed anti...
For me it starts, with being unapologetically proud of being a Pakistani-Muslim Indigenous woman. It starts by sharing our stories and celebrating who we are.
Did you ever in your most outlandish dreams think you would make it to the land down under? I hope I can make you proud after all you have sacrificed for me.
Even though we may be physically separated there is something sweet about knowing that cards with my messy handwriting sit in the homes of my friends.
I am an atheist, but I'm also a cultural Muslim and it took me many years of heated debates and a frustrating search for an identity to come to this conclusion.
For the longest time, I had struggled with deep feelings of guilt and shame for choosing not to have my father in my life.


Parenting for modern families: new rules for a new age.

Judgement is being cast upon such a tiny snapshot of their day, a fleeting moment in time.
I know first-hand what he’s going through and it makes it tough as a parent.
We had grandmothers, aunties, uncles and cousins who we saw every week. If it takes a village to raise a child, my parents were never short of helping hands,...
To Filipinos, the family tree is always filled with a few extra branches - and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Weaning from breastfeeding is never a fun experience. But weaning because of needing to go back on medication is a whole other story.
Whether it’s rocks and leaves naturally shaped into love hearts, or the first to spot the arc of a rainbow, our children are the ones with eyes well trained to...
“There was a long silence after my one-sided eruption. Then I realised something about my husband I should’ve known.”


Let's talk about it all: from love and dating to divorce and estrangement (and everything in between).

As my father paused at a red light, he turned towards me and said, “you’re not allowed to have a boyfriend until you get married”.
My father was married, in fact he still is, to a woman he once described as his “best friend” but this woman was not, is not, my mother.
My in-laws only speak Bengali, while my parents only speak Mandarin. To make matters more confusing, my husband and I communicate only in English. At times, the...
It’s hard because you dilute who you are, or at least who you feel safe to be with older friends.
"Here I was thinking that I was a work in progress when in-fact I was a piece of work as I still harboured the same outdated views that my father and his father...
The mothering experience I had growing up was complex, dark and painful and as a result, I developed dysfunctional coping mechanisms.This pain is called the ...
Even though we may be physically separated there is something sweet about knowing that cards with my messy handwriting sit in the homes of my friends.

More dispatches from Voices