With a noble intent of “To us all towns are one, all men our kin” – (Kaniyan Poongunranaar) and a hunger to seek green pastures as in “Seek wealth, even by riding the waves” (Konrai Vaendhan – Avvayaar), many years ago Tamils moved in to South Australia state in Australia and started living across in this scattered in many places. As they were lesser in population, they could not form a community.
After year 2000, slowly and gradually Tamils started settling in South Australia just not from India but from many different countries. They got jobs in their trades and started living in this state ever since then. As the numbers increased post 2004, Tamils got opportunities to meet each other and to socialise among them. Continuing that, around 50 Tamil families joined together in an event centre at Edwardstown and celebrated Deepavali for the first time as a community here in October 2005. In December 2005 around 100 Tamil families joined together at Burnside community hall and celebrated Christmas, as a community. This was when and where the seeds of Adelaide Tamil Association, germinated.
After that Adelaide Tamil Association was registered duly in the year 2006 and the Deepavali event was celebrated at the Salvation Army function hall at Kilkenny. In the same year, Tamils joined along with Srilankan, Malaysian Tamils and celebrated the Tamil New Year (Chiththirai Thiruvizha) at Elders Park in the city of Adelaide.
In the year 2007, due to lack of interest and cooperation, Deepavali was celebrated along with other communities such as IAASA. The first ever Pongal celebration by Tamils was celebrated in the same year at a Park at South Terrace, in the city of Adelaide.
In 2008, Pongal was celebrated in the City Bingo Hall. The executive committee which assumed office in the year 2008 brought in regulations to the community and the Tamil community started following those ever since. Deepavali was celebrated at Woodville Hall in that year.
Deepavali was celebrated at Dom Polski hall at the city of Adelaide in the year 2009. Pongal was not celebrated that year but the Tamil community introduced a new arts festival called Sangamam and celebrated the same at the Woodville hall in the same year.
Adelaide Tamil Association and Ceylon Tamil Association jointly celebrated Pongal at a park in Flinders University in the year 2010. ATA decided to celebrate all 3 festivals of Pongal, Sangamam and Deepavali every year, then.
Following that in 2011, ATA and CTA celebrated Pongal together at a park in Glen Osmond. Towards the end of 2011, the ATA general body decided to start Tamil school for Tamil children. Subsequently on 02.12.2012, Tamil school was started successfully with 23 students and a teacher. In 2012, Deepavali was celebrated at Dom Polski Hall in the city and Pongal was celebrated at Reknown Park.
Pongal was celebrated at Pennington Tamil School and Deepavali was celebrated at Family Christian Centre at Seaton in the year 2013.
Tamils Day, Pongal was celebrated with much fervour and zest at Bonython Park in the year 2014, where ATA joined hands with CTA in the celebrations. Ever since, Pongal has been celebrated in the same venue every year with zeal.
Deepavali was celebrated at Woodville hall in the years 2015, 2017 and 2018 and at Christian Family Centre at Seaton in the years 2014, 2016 and 2019.
History continues ….