Play Together and Live in Harmony



Sunday, 12 March 2023

Tumbalong Park

Darling Harbour, Sydney

11:00AM - 5:00PM

Children's Festival Excellence Award 2023 Nomination

Children's Festival Participating Groups are invited to nominate a member or members of their team who continue to excel in their study as well as actively involved in the community as a school student, a member of a group or a local resident

Please click here to nominate.



up coming events


Sunday, 12 March 2023

Tumbalong Park

Darling Harbour, Sydney


Date: TBA

Location: Koshigaya Park, Campbelltown


Sunday, 10 September 2023

Gazzard Park, Yagoona 2199

(Next to Yagoona Railway Station)


Date: TBA

Time: TBA

Venue: Koshigaya Park

Corner of Camden Rd and Hurley St,

Campbelltown, NSW 2560


The Canterbury – Bankstown Children’s Festival 2022 at Abel Reserve, Revesby on Sunday 30 October was blessed with a beautiful sunny day and hailed as another success story for diversity building with fun and creative activities, colourful children parade, vibrant onstage performance... The festival is a proof that we can work together harmoniously to build a stronger, mutual respect, supportive community where everyone can thrive to their full potential irrespective where their cultural backgrounds are.

Check out for feedback, support messages for the day


This much-loved community event at Pyrmont Bay Park, Darling Harbour from 11:00am to 4:30pm on 26 June 2022 has been lauded as the best Sydney Children's Festival ever!

Check out for the Message from the CFO's President, Support Messages and photos for the day

Children's Festival Book II


Following the successful publication of the Children's Festival Book I -“Playing together and Living in Harmony”, the Children's Festival Book II - "How to successfully organise Children's Festivals” provides a clear and solid understanding of how we have successfully staged these events in the past. It aims to bring the Children’s Festival experience to wider audiences and to encourage like-minded people to hold a festival in other parts of the state and across the country. The work will be a great reference for organisers, and we are hopeful that it will help the Children’s Festival concept to keep growing long into the future.

We are fortunate that the contributors who have also been our key volunteers for a long time come from different professional areas: youth leaders, teachers, lawyers, event organisers, social workers… but all of them have the same vision: “to contribute to social harmony and cohesion, starting with children, because as we always acknowledge Children are our future.”

We strive to achieve that vision by bringing joy to children, their families and the community at a Children’s Festival, because “Those who play together stay together”.

However, our world is changing rapidly because of the COVID-19 pandemic and many things in our lives are different, including in the area of event management. Therefore, our Children's Festival Book II will be updated following the completion of this year’s Children’s Festivals to reflect the changes that we will discover are required to run such a cultural event in the years to come, and also add more interesting details to the Book.

We sincerely hope you find in this work not only the guidelines to successfully organise a Children’s Festival but also that you learn something of the heart and soul of the many unwavering volunteers who work together with the hope to contribute to building a better world for all of us and the next generations.

Children’s Festival Organisation Inc.

The eBook "How to successfully organise Children's Festivals" can be downloaded here

EoY Celebration 2021

It was great that the CFO was able to hold an EOY gathering in early December 2021. Given the fact that there had been no Children’s Festival for almost two years in the wake of the pandemic except the Book launch and AGM in early December 2020, the gathering was a wonderful opportunity for CFO’s members, volunteers, performance groups, supporters and friends to interact, socialise and party face to face, making everyone so happy. And here’s the feedback from some of the attendees:

“… The end of year party was a huge success. Everything was well organized…”

Tina Kaur, one of the Children’s Festival’s main MCs over the many years.

“… Thank you for the wonderful afternoon, entertainment and food, you always express so much gratitude to all, the photos are very good...”

Catrine Von Dinklage, member of the Universal Peace Federation Australia.

… It was nice to finally meet and enjoy face to face interaction. Thank you for a lovely presentation and the amazing food…”

L. Constantinova on behalf of Kalinka Creative Arts Group

“…Thanks for inviting us to the end-of-year gathering I really enjoyed it. It was wonderful to see everyone again…”

Amanpreet Kamal, Events Coordinator, Sikh Association of Sydney Revesby Punjabi School

“…Thank you for inviting us to your event. We thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon…. We look forward to working with you in the new year…”

Chris Bailey, Officer Commanding, Australian Air League, Riverwood Squadron

The event was attended by some 40 people.


Dear Children’s Festival Friends and Supporters,

I hope you all stay safe and well.

In the previous weeks, we attended two COVID-19 video conference meetings held by Multicultural NSW (NSW State Government) and one COVID-19 forum held by the Department of Home Affairs (Federal Government):

- The first meeting on 5.7.21 with over 140 attendees was chaired by the CEO of Multicultural NSW, Joseph La Posta with the attendances of Dr Jan Fizzell, Senior Medical Adviser, NSW Health and a NSW Assistant Police Commissioner.

- The Ministerial Forum on 13.7.2021 with over 130 attendees was chaired by the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon Alex Hawke MP. The Prime Minister, the Hon Scott Morrison MP was also present.

- The Forum on 19.7.21 with over 300 attendees was facilitated by the CEO of Multicultural NSW, Joseph La Posta along with the Minister for Multiculturalism, the Hon. Natalie Ward MLC, Dr Jan Fizzell, Senior Medical Adviser, NSW Health and a NSW Assistant Police Commissioner.

Each meeting attracted community representatives from various cultural and religious backgrounds. All meetings were very informative, the great majority of questions were answered and suggestions were noted by the organisers. The information had been previously announced by the media as well as in other campaigns by governments but was reinforced at these gatherings.

Due to the current construction of the Western Sydney Uni campus at Paul Keating Park, this park is not available for big events in this year. Therefore, on 4.6.2021, together with a Canterbury-Bankstown Council staffer, we carried out an on-site inspection at Abel Reserve (corner of The River Road & Marco Ave, Revesby NSW 2212 - next to Revesby Train Station). We have been working with the Council staff on the preparation of the annual Children's Festival to be held on Sunday 14.11.2021. With the increasing number of fully vaccinated people and the effective operation of our Public Health system, we hope the annual Children's Festival in Bankstown can be held as planned.

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) is scheduled for November 2021, and details of this will be sent in due course. Following the successful publication and launch of the Children’s Festival Book I in December 2020, the creation of the Children’s Festival Book II is underway and will be launched at this AGM.

Last but not least, the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2021 was announced on 14.6.2021, and I was honoured to be appointed a Member of The Order of Australia with the citation "for significant service to the multicultural community of New South Wales, and to youth". Please refer to the link:

The report printed in the Canterbury-Bankstown Torch on 23.6.2021

I would like to thank you all for walking with me on the journey through various projects over the last 31 years, particularly for being my long-term work mates in either Scouting or the Children's Festival. The recognition and the success of our 35 Children’s Festivals in the last 22 years also mean that we are on the right track and apparently effective in doing the good things for our younger generations and in helping to build harmony in the community. It is a win for all of us! I do hope that your worthy contributions will also be recognised similarly some day in the future. Voluntary provision of meaningful service to the community enriches our lives and makes us happier. Remember this is a long-term commitment.

I would like to wish you all good health and urge you to stay well. I hope to see you all at our upcoming Children's Festival.

Best regards,

Thuat V. Nguyen AM

President, Children’s Festival Organisation Inc



- "They are beautiful! So professionally done with many great photos." (Elena Samsonova)

- "Beautifully done and highly recommended I am sure they (the children and their parents) will be all happy."(Cora Bojarski)

- "Many hardworking volunteers have produced a wonderful Festival and followed on with a very beautiful historical book. "(Gwen and Colin Platt)

- "The book is a great testament to the work and success of the organisation." (Harry Fuelling)

- " As the years go by and the world changes, the work of the Children's Festival becomes even more important. I was thinking of the verbs - Playing & Living and the adverbs Together in Harmony - how powerful are those words." (Vivi Martin)

- "... So many beautiful and meaningful photos of different sizes in the book" (Thiên Lý Tôn Nữ Ly)

- "... I like the quote "Children are our future" which is referred to in the book..." (Tammy Tran)

- " A highly successful book launch with the supportive attendances of representatives of the governments at all levels." (Duc Hung Bui)

- "Congratulations on a wonderful book and thank you for taking the time to post it to me. The photos are awesome! Gosh what a lot of work, you have done a great job collating all the memories." (Jennifer Craddock)

- "The book sends a great message. The photos are wonderful." (VanHoa Nguyen)

- "Thank you CFO supporters for a wonder show. The Audio Visuals were fantastic!!!

- What a great Book launch!! " (John Pestana Jnr)

A big thank to those who helped with the Book Launch, the Torch newspaper as well as everyone who has sent us their feedback so far.

Copies of the book can be purchased by contacting Kim Vo on 0414 545 440 or email:



by Ross Leighton

Ross Leighton, although not being directly involved in the CF, is not a stranger to these celebrations. As one of the longest serving officers with the NSW government’s multicultural agency, starting with the Ethnic Affairs Commission, then later Community Relations Commission and finally Multicultural NSW - Ross has had a close look at these celebrations over the many years and has kindly provided his assessment in the form of a book review as follows (Kim Vo)

From simple beginnings in Bankstown in 1999 the Children’s Festival has evolved to become an important event in the calendar of multicultural events in New South Wales. Children’s Festivals have since been held in Bankstown, Canterbury, Marrickville, Sydney and Campbelltown. This commemorative publication covers the history of the Children’s Festival since 1999 and is intended as the first volume of a comprehensive record of the event. A second volume will deal with the steps involved in organising the Children’s Festival.

The Children’s Festival has grown so much that the Children’s Festival Organisation Inc was established to oversee the event and coordinate the participation of more than four hundred community organisations. The importance of the Children’s Festival can be gauged by the large number of messages of support from dignitaries and community representatives which are included in this excellent publication.

Over the years the Children’s Festival has been characterised by parades, songs, dancing, poster and essay competitions, stalls and costume displays representing an impressive number of cultural and community groups. These are all mentioned in the publication and accompanied by many photographs which depict the cultural diversity of the event and of New South Wales.

The text is brief and interesting, leaving ample space for the most significant part of the publication, the aforementioned photographs which are a valuable record of the Children’s Festival over the past twenty-one years. It must be interesting for those involved with the Children’s Festival for so long to see how it has grown and developed.

The success and longevity of the Children’s Festival is a testament to the Founder, Mr Thuat Van Nguyen OAM, who also coordinated the efforts of the editing and layout team. Mr Nguyen’s remarkable contribution to our multicultural community is commendable. I enjoyed reading the publication and have returned to it many times. I look forward to reading the second volume when it becomes available.

Ross Leighton


Children's Festival 2020 stopped by COVID-19

The annual Children’s Festival in Bankstown, now its 22nd year, which was set down for Sunday November 1st has been cancelled.

Founding President of the Children’s Festival Organisation Inc, Mr Thuat Nguyen OAM, announced the decision today.

“The worsening situation with the pandemic and the Public Health Restrictions on Gathering and Movement leave us with no alternative but to cancel this year’s Canterbury-Bankstown Children’s Festival and look forward to a festival in the City of Sydney at Tumbalong Park in late March 2021, on the occasion of Harmony Day.

“Our decision is also in line with a decision of Canterbury-Bankstown Council to put all community festivals on hold due to the Covid-19 crisis.

“Naturally, it was a very difficult and painful decision to make, knowing how much the children look forward to this event and the amount of effort they put in to prepare for their performances.

“We have already had to cancel a festival planned for First Fleet Park, Sydney, in April and the Macarthur Multicultural Children's Festival planned for this month”, he said.

The Canterbury-Bankstown Children’s Festival attracts thousands of people and features singing, dancing, music and martial arts presented by around 30 groups from children’s performing groups, school communities and youth groups from different cultural backgrounds including Aboriginal Australians.

It also reflects the multicultural society, as most of the children wear their traditional costumes while performing and marching in the grand parade.

“This is all about our children, the leaders of tomorrow, demonstrating their appreciation and respect for the diversity of our multicultural society.

“This festival sends a vibrant message to the adult population of Australia that whilst we all have different cultural backgrounds, we all are part of one nation where racism and discrimination have no place”, Mr Nguyen said.

Details on or

Media inquiries: Warren Duncan on 0411 507 080 or

15 August 2020

message from the president OF children'S festival organisation

Dear Children’s Festival Friends and Supporters,

I would like to assure you that the Children’s Festival is alive and well and planning for the time after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Firstly, since April, our Management Committee has held monthly productive and enjoyable video conference meetings. We are working on the preparation of our end of year financial reports. Our Annual General Meeting is scheduled for Sunday 6th December 2020. I hope that life will return to some sort of normality by that time.

Since late May, our website has been operating from a new address with a new and attractive look. Please visit us at and provide your comments to improve the new site.

We are still hoping to stage the 22nd Children’s Festival in Bankstown on Sunday 1st November 2020. Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of New South Wales and Hon David Coleman MP, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs have both committed themselves to be present on the day.

Meanwhile, looking ahead, our Children’s Festival in Sydney is planned to be held at Tumbalong Park, Darling Harbour, Sydney in late March 2021, which is the month in which Harmony Day is celebrated across Australia. This is still a long way off and much of the detail is still to be finalised. I will keep you informed as we work towards that event.

Last, but not least, I am happy to inform you that the preparation for a publication telling the story of the Children’s Festival over the past two decades is well underway. Many volunteers and supporters have been eagerly contributing to this worthwhile project. We plan to launch the book at our Annual General Meeting on 6th December. So please save the date and do not miss this special event.

That is all I can report to you at for this time. Please maintain your interest and support and I will write to you again in the near future.

Meantime, I ask that you take whatever means necessary to keep yourselves and your family safe and healthy in the coming weeks as the current wave of COVID-19 works its way through our society.

With best regards

On behalf of Children’s Festival Organisation Inc

Thuat V. Nguyen OAM




The Children’s Festival is a significant multicultural event in Australia.

The Children’s Festival is a significant multicultural event in Australia.

It is unique in its celebration of cultural diversity with a spectacular day-long program of entertainment presented by over 30 groups from different cultural backgrounds. Thousands of children and their families participate in the day’s activities.

Under the motto “Play Together and Live in Harmony”, the Children’s Festival is a day for everyone but especially for children to get together in a multicultural environment to have fun, join in creative activities and share those new experiences with each other.

The year 2020, marks the 22nd Anniversary of our organisation and we are anxiously looking forward to even greater success at this year’s events. Following our successful Children’s Festival in the City of Canterbury-Bankstown on Sunday 15th of September, 2019, our 36th Children’s Festival will be held on Sunday 5th of April, 2020 in First Fleet Park, The Rocks, Sydney and our 37th Children’s Festival will be held on Sunday 23rd of August, 2020 in Koshigaya Park, Campbelltown.

We would like to invite your school/group to participate in this spectacular event, in particular to join in the Children’s Parade in First Fleet Park, Sydney at 1.30 pm and/or to perform on stage.

For further details, please refer to “Expression of Interest – Performances and Parade”.

If you are interested in running a stall, please refer to the “Expression of Interest - Stalls”.

There are the poster design and writing competitions for children 13 years old and under. The theme for the poster design and writing competitions are “Our environment belongs to everyone”.

Please refer to the competition announcements shown on the website for more details.

Your participation in the Children’s Festival will give you and the children an enjoyable and memorable experience.

Get ready for a day of joyous celebration!

Please come and be entertained with great music and dancing, beautiful traditional costume display, lively and exciting outdoor games and activities and the Children’s Parade. Not to forget the myriad workshop activities such as kite making and flying, lion dance and much more…..

To our sponsors and supporters, thank you for your continued support for the Children’s Festival and to the families who come on the day –you will certainly enjoy it!

See you there!

Children’s Festival Team

messages from supporters for the CITY OF SYDNEY'S CHILDREN FESTIVAL 2020

Message from the Lord Mayor

Message from the Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore

On behalf of the City of Sydney, I send my congratulations and best wishes to the organisers and participants of the Children’s Festival 2020.

The Children’s Festival is a wonderful example of a community-based event that celebrates cultural diversity. Sydney owes much of its identity and resilience to the cultural diversity of its communities, and I commend festival organisers for bringing together families from diverse cultural backgrounds in such a great setting.






2015 Sydney City Children's Festival

2014 Bankstown Children's Festival

2014 Sydney City Children's Festival

2013 Bankstown Children's Festival



We would like to thank our sponsors this year for their continual generous support for the Children’s Festival. Without your financial or in-kind donations, the Children’s Festival would not be able to continue and flourish like it has for so many years. We hope that with your tremendous support it will continue to flourish for many more years to come


Read messages from our wonderful supporters. Without their support, we would not have been able to produce these fantastic family events for all to enjoy over the past 16 years. The Children’s Festival thanks all of our believers and supporters. We hope that one day we can bring The Children’s Festival to many more different locations around the country.