The Australian Multicultural Foundation (AMF) has announced the opening of applications for the 2023 Carla Zampatti Scholarship for Young Women.

This national initiative, now in its second year, aims to honour the legacy of the late Carla Zampatti AC, an acclaimed Australian fashion designer, businesswoman, and advocate for multiculturalism.

Zampatti, who was of Italian descent, dedicated 56 years to pioneering the Australian fashion industry and breaking down barriers for women in business.

The $10,000 scholarship is available to support a range of personal ventures, projects, or activities led by young women (aged 18-29) from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds who face financial obstacles and lack sufficient support in pursuing their aspirations that can include business startups, educational pursuits, and goals in the creative arts, design, or sports.

Carla Zampatti behind the scenes during a runway. Photo: Supplied

Dr Hass Dellal AO, Executive Director of the Australian Multicultural Foundation, said that the program “seeks to empower young women from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, including newly arrived refugees, to overcome barriers and achieve their aspirations. The scholarship plays a vital role in strengthening the future prosperity of multicultural Australia.”

Alexander Schuman, CEO of Carla Zampatti Pty Ltd and Carla Zampatti’s son, sees the scholarship as a meaningful continuation of his mother’s legacy,” reflecting her commitment to empowering women, promoting the arts, and championing multiculturalism.”

Last year’s scholarship recipient, Sofia Abel, used the funding to launch her fashion label, Cienti the Label, and expand her business. Sofia gained valuable experience through an internship at Carla Zampatti, where she learned firsthand about the fashion industry from Alexander Schuman. Sofia expressed her gratitude for the scholarship, emphasizing its positive impact on her business growth and the overwhelming response from customers.

The program also awarded a distinction prize to Natacha Adanlessossi, a humanitarian refugee from Togo, West Africa, who runs her Afro-hair styling business, Afro – Hair by Natacha, in Ballarat. Natacha used the scholarship to expand her product range and develop her online brand, affirming the transformative effect of the Carla Zampatti Scholarship on her entrepreneurial journey.

Last year’s recipient was designer Sofia Abel. Photo: Supplied

Applications for this year’s scholarship will close on Friday, July 14, with the winner set to be announced later this year in Melbourne.

For further information on eligibility and application details, please visit this link.