Family Members of ECAs

NECTAR aims to assist ANU in “providing … an inclusive and welcoming environment” for our diverse population by welcoming our staff and PhD candidates as well as their family members.

Email to sign up for the NECTAR Partner Mailing List, and be the first to find out about the next activity or initiative. NECTAR has taken the following initiatives for family members of our ECAs:


NECTAR Partner Activities

NECTAR will organise four Partner Activities in 2019. Through these activities, we aim to create a space for partners/spouses of ANU staff and PhD candidates to connect with each other and form community.  Many of you are new to Canberra, or even Australia. We hope that, through the NECTAR Partner Activities, you can meet people who are in a similar situation and exchange tips or even make friends!

The first NECTAR Partner Activity took place on Wednesday 19 June at the Australian National Botanic Gardens. Our international group with native speakers of Chinese, Dutch, Spanish, Turkish, French, Afrikaans, Mongolian, German, Catalan, Japanese and English met on a sunny autumn afternoon. We enjoyed a stroll and a warm drink together. Tips and phone numbers were exchanged, making this a very successful first Partner Activity.

Our second Partner Activity was on Friday 16 August. Ngunawal Elder Wally Bell guided us around ANU Campus and talked about sites of cultural importance. A very informative and interesting talk, which was followed by a stop at a café to exchange our own stories.

At the third activity, on 26 September, we welcomed a few new participants. After exchanging course and event-recommendations, we enjoyed tulips, coffee and music at Floriade - Canberra's celebration of spring.

Our fourth and final Activity will take place on Wednesday 13 November from 1.30-4pm. We will hold a potluck picnic in a park near Civic. Bring a dish, dessert, or snack to share and pack a picnic blanket. NECTAR will take care of cups, napkins, and a couple of bottles of juice.

The NECTAR Partner Activities are a collaboration with the ANU Family Friendly Committee.

PARSA Playdates

The ANU Postgraduate & Research Students’ Association (PARSA) organises monthly Playdates which are now open to ECAs and their family members. Check out what is on at the PARSA Facebook events site.


Family Friendly Committee

We are collaborating with the ANU Family Friendly Committee on future developments for 2020. Watch this space for updates.



NECTAR has gained inspiration from 'Get in Touch', led by Carola Eijsenring of Indigo-Wereld, an award-winning social support program for spouses of international knowledge workers in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Thank you Carola!