0466 124 303

An Hour with Dr Bogumiła Żongołłowicz

4-Sept-2022 | By Nadia B. Porter

Bogumila (Good or nice to God)

Our guest this month is a versatile and amazing woman the aptly named Bogumila. 

She was born in November 1955 in the town of Slupsk in north western Poland. She had a normal Polish Catholic upbringing. She graduated from the Tertiary Teachers’ College at Slupsk, and she also studied at the University of Gdansk, a city made famous by the Solidarity Movement and Lech Walesa. She completing her tertiary education in Poland at the University of the capital Warsaw.

Bogumila worked as a teacher, a journalist, editor before following her heart and migrating to Australia in 1991; to marry the man she loved. The couple settled in St Kilda and soon had two daughters. On her 40th birthday, they moved to Rowville, first living in Trevena Close then moving to the current home near Wellington Village Shopping Centre when it was still an empty paddock. Her younger daughter attended Karoo Primary School. 

In 1997, Bogumila penned a poem about her experience with her new life in the land of Oz, which will give you a glimpse of what most new arrivals feel, especially women.

The loneliness and isolation of a new mother, in a new country with a different language, culture and way of life, did not deter a spirited high achiever like Bogumila from seeking knowledge and improving herself. She completed an Advanced Certificate in Broadcast Journalism with the Open Channel, a Diploma of Arts in Professional Writing and Editing from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, and a Doctorate in the Department of European Languages at Macquarie University, Sydney, in 2003. In Melbourne, she has been a contributor to the Polish program on Radio SBS-3EA (1994-95), editor of the ‘Polish Weekly’ (‘Tygodnik Polski’) (1996) and a guest lecturer in Polish Studies at Monash University (2003). In addition to research and writing about aspects of Polish culture and the history of the Poles in Australia, she is a graphic Designer. She is a member of the Polish Authors’ Association, the Polish Journalists’ Association, Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance-Australian Journalists’ Association and the Polish Historical Institute in Australia Inc.

Bogumila and her husband have contributed tremendously to the Polish-Australian Community. 

Bogumila’s story and achievement are still ongoing, she is still very active and productive.

She embodies the spirit of thousands who uproot, leaving familiar and comfort zones; and replanting themselves in a new soil, seeking more fertile grounds and a new life. It may be right that you need to be ‘crazy to immigrate”, you also need to be ambitious, driven, adventurous and a freedom seeker. Sometimes we do not have to immigrate physically, but can remove ourselves from a slump or the doldrums of our daily lives impacting our happiness and wellbeing, and progress to a new level.

Dziękuję pani. Thank you Bogumila for sharing your inspirational story with us. 


Bogumila Zongollowicz looks for family documents in The Lithuanian State Historical Archives, 2018. Photo. Archives B. Zongollowicz

Digital Newspaper Subscription

Sign up for our Digital Newspaper
Local History
      Sarah Taylor Sarah Taylor (nee Sutton). Sar...
Vancam Boys Jonathon and Peter at the front of their home in Hillview Avenue ...
Williams Children Fred Williams (at rear) with his younger brother and four sis...
Translate this page